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Helping Hands (1941)

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Inspired by his soldier brother, Spanky decides to organize a military unit among his friends, collecting odds and ends for the war effort.


Edward L. Cahn


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Credited cast:
Robert Blake ... Mickey (as Mickey Gubitosi)
Darla Hood ... Darla (as Our Gang)
Billy 'Froggy' Laughlin ... Froggy (as Our Gang)
George 'Spanky' McFarland ... Spanky (as Our Gang)
Billie 'Buckwheat' Thomas ... Buckwheat (as Our Gang)
Big Shot Big Shot ... Big Shot (as Our Gang)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Margaret Bert ... Mickey's mother
Freddie Chapman Freddie Chapman ... Boy Complainging about Nick
Raphael Dolciame Raphael Dolciame ... Kid soldier
Sam Flint ... Major Stanford
Byron Foulger ... Head of the civilian counsel
Vincent Graeff Vincent Graeff ... Sentry
James Gubitosi James Gubitosi ... Nick
Ralph Hodges Ralph Hodges ... Kid soldier
Mickey Laughlin Mickey Laughlin ... Kid tapped by bat


Inspired by his soldier brother, Spanky decides to organize a military unit among his friends, collecting odds and ends for the war effort.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Family | Comedy | Short







Release Date:

27 September 1941 (USA) See more »


Box Office


$20,440 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Two brothers of "Our Gang" members group are in Helping Hands (1941). A brother of Billy 'Froggy' Laughlin, Mickey Laughlin and Robert Blake's brother, James Gubitosi. See more »

Crazy Credits

In the final scene of "Helping Hands," seven little toddlers are marching down the street in the parade. As the toddlers are moving forward, they reveal "THE END" spelled out on the obverse side of their diapers, one letter for each child (except for the middle youngster whose diaper was blank, representing a space, between the two three-letter words). A line drawing of the MGM Leo-the-Lion and torches insignia logo then fades in near the bottom of the screen. See more »

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User Reviews

Laughs? Where's the laughs?!
28 December 2004 | by jbacks3See all my reviews

Released just prior to Pearl Harbor, Helping Hands is Our Gang goes to war... in the form of learning how to bolster the national defense by conducting scrap metal drives and buying defense stamps. Utterly weird and inconceivable by earlier Hal Roach standards, this kind of stuff became the norm for MGM. Yeah, the plot line is understandable given the times, but the laughs are non-existent. Instead of gags you get a sermon. This mentality along with MGM's gradual infusion of untalented kids that replaced the veterans would mean the death knell of the series. I can't imagine a 9-year old wanting to watch Helping Hands today. Pretty bad, folks!

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