Tuesday, April 17, 2012


In the wake of the new big screen THREE STOOGES movie, here's my reaction to a lesser known LAUREL AND HARDY revamp.

Who knew there were two mummy movies in 1999?

12 years ago this movie, THE ALL NEW ADVENTURES OF LAUREL AND HARDY IN FOR LOVE OR MUMMY, with Oscar winner F. Murray Abraham in a supporting role, came out of the blue. Maybe it played the theatres for a day or a week, but I never saw it nor heard of it. It popped up on cable some years later, running regularly in the twilight hours. I watched some of it. The plot was stunningly bad, but I was fascinated by the two leads. They did a good pastiche.

Why it seemed like a good idea to do this, I don't know. Bronson Pinchot and Gailard Sartain star as descendents of the original Laurel and Hardy. They do a good job of mimicking the comedy duo, but it's like New Coke. Do not want. Do not need. Best left alone, y'know? 

I read a story that Larry Harmon, who managed the Laurel and Hardy property (he created the animated shorts and comic books in the 1960s), was a friend to Pinchot. For Pinchot's 1980s PERFECT STRANGERS sitcom, he (Pinchot) portrayed Stan Laurel in a dream sequence. The story goes that Harmon loaned Pinchot a pair of Stan Laurel's actual shoes for the sequence. 

Perhaps this movie was, sincerely, a dream of Pinchot's and Harmon's to create. With Harmon as co-director, the movie was made, for good or for ill; for love, rather than for money I would bet. The silver lining of this: Perhaps it has served as an introduction of the duo to kids.

Here's the trailer for the movie: 

Laurel and Hardy Together Again (a rarely seen 1983 documentary).
"I sure do miss Mr. Hardy," a letter from Stan Laurel to a fan.

-- the above is an edited version of a blog entry from August 10, 2011.

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