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Saturday, February 02, 2019

MR. LAUREL AND MR. HARDY



Years ago as a child, I grew up watching TV and on Saturdays was sent by Mom to the movies. As a child, if it wasn’t a cowboy movie it had to be a comedy. It always was a 2-man comic team that entertained little kids.

There were Abbot and Costello, who later on continued into the 1970s and 80s onto the TV screen. Sharing the cinematic menu was the team of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, a team that once was then disappeared as an entity. But there was one team that filled all the categories of comedic entertainment, and that was Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy.

I first noticed their existence when I was about 4 or 5 years of age. I don’t recall if it was on the big screen or the little screen, but their performance immediately impressed me. I called them then: ‘Fat and Skinny’ because that is how I saw them. Eventually, I learned their names and life went on. After the early 1950s, I lost touch or they lost touch with their audience and fans. Seeing them immediately got my attention as I waited to laugh at their antics. Seeing their movies I learned a great many of their routines and seeing a bowler hat takes me back immediately as that child I once was.

In college, I read a book I believe was titled:

Recently I went to the movies and saw the latest ‘MR. LAURAL AND MR. HARDY’
There are countless other books and articles on the two and I always read those. They were icons that still stand up today. The famous mustache and bowler hats with ties and a long chin all lend to their images as an icon. Usually, those icons were created in the genre of the media, black and white film.

The movie itself was excellent and there are many powerful scenes that move you emotionally while teaching you that behind the mask of happiness lays a sad tear-filled clown.

In the movie: Stan & Ollie the casting was excellent, the actors; Steven Coogan and Stan and John C. Reilly as Ollie do a masterful job of conveying a friendship that withstands the test of time, leaving the viewer feel the emotions of an aging friendship and makes the viewer realize their own mortality and past friendships. It had me wanting to call my best friend Phil of over 50 years to tell him I love him.

The film focuses on details of the comedy duo's personal relationship while relating how they embarked on a grueling tour of the U.K. and Ireland during 1953 and struggled to get another film made and be back in the spotlight of comedy.

Often I travel to Burbank and see these tall palm trees that line the streets all in a row, both sides of the road and it takes me back to those wonderful films they made on those streets. They are a constant reminder to me of their wonderful movies. The jokes, slapstick and facial expressions all give us MR. LAURAL AND MR. HARDY, the body nuances, and music that fill the background make for the world of MR. LAURAL AND MR. HARDY
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It’s another fine mess they got me into!



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