Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops Film Details
Overview: Harry and Willie buy the Edison Movie Studio in the year 1912 from Joseph Gorman, a confidence man. They follow Gorman to Hollywood where, as stunt men, they find him directing movies as Sergei Trumanoff and stealing the studio payro
Tagline: Slapstick chases!… Pies in faces!… Shapely beauts in bathing suits!
Review: Don’t expect the major part of this comedy featuring A&C to be interactions with the Keystone Kops. This does happen in the climactic chase scene at the end, which isn’t all that interesting if you’ve seen the Kops a few times. For those who haven’t, this is probably a film highlight. The familiar-looking Fred Clark, as swindler Joseph Gorman, as well as silent film director Sergei Toumanoff, along with his fashionable girlfriend Leota Van Cleef(Lyn Bari) are the chief villains. Both had a long career in both Hollywood and TV. At age 42, Lyn was still looking quite youthful. She mostly played ‘the other woman’ or villainous women, occasionally in comedies, such as “Francis Joins the WACs”, released the year before. The film begins with Lou in a silent film theater, crying his eyes out over the plight of a woman and her child, who are being chased by the villain through snow and an ice-covered river. He creates a scene by standing up and shouting at the villain, resulting in him being roughly escorted out. But, he left his bag with $5000. inheritance from his aunt under the seat. So, he buys another ticket(from his real daughter) and enters to retrieve his bag. He makes another scene and is again roughly escorted out, where Abbott waits for him. Abbott slaps him, and a passerby socks Abbott and pushes him into a large potted plant. Lou then slaps Abbott, and the passersby ignore it. Then Abbott slaps Lou, and he again gets socked and pushed into another large potted plant. Amazingly, without Lou seeing it, Gorman sells him a small movie studio, as Abbott recommends. They find this was Edison’s old broken down movie studio, and that they aren’t the first to fall for this scam. Gorman then skips town(NYC) with Lyn, hoping to become a movie director by the name of Toumanoff. A&C attempt to follow them, mostly by hopping on various empty boxcars, with many adventures along the way. They encounter Gorman again, when they accidentally get mixed up in a western Gorman is shooting. They don’t recognize the director as Gorman, because he has donned a toupee to cover his mostly bald head. Nonetheless, he doesn’t want them around, for fear they will eventually recognize him. But the producer is very impressed with an accidental stunt they performed, so suggests they become stuntmen for him. Lou is assigned to double for Lyn, in a parachuting scene. Even though he puts on a dress and woman’s hat, he looks nothing like Lyn. Nonetheless, he and Abbott take the plane up. What follows strongly resembles a similar scene in “Keep ’em Flying”, except that they are shot at with live bullets instead of blanks, courtesy of Hinds(Maxie Rosenbloom): Gorman’s henchman. Fortunately, they survive this assassination attempt. Eventually, the producer, as well as A&C figure out that director Toumanoff is Gorman, but the director decides not to blow his cover, as he thinks he has potential to become a good comedy director. However, he doesn’t know that Gorman has stolen $75,000. from the studio. In a scene I don’t much understand, A&C go to Gorman’s house, Abbott dressed as a stereotypical cat burglar, while Costello is dressed as a Victorian bobby. Abbott gains entrance to the house, but Gorman catches him. Calling for police, Costello responds, and takes Abbott. However, he releases him outside, and Abbott again enters the house and Gorman again catches him and calls for police. This time a real policeman(or is it a Keystone Kop?), dressed exactly the same, rings the doorbell, and takes Abbott out. But Abbott soon enters the house again, and Lou answers the call for police. This cycle is repeated several more times, driving Gorman crazy. In conclusion, this is an entertaining A&C comedy, lacking any singing, which is what many reviewers want.
Country: United States
Duration: 80 min
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