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Author Topic: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies  (Read 11420 times)

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Offline Buck18

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Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
« on: December 06, 2004, 02:38:54 PM »
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  • We all know that The Three Stooges, at least in the early days, were Jewish.  I have been struck by the fact that in some of their movies, they speak Yiddish in an attempt to fool other people around them.  For instance, in "Pardon My Scotch" (1935), they shout "Vehr-ge-hargit!" as a toast---which means "drop dead" in Yiddish.  I also think, in one of their later space movies they make use of Yiddish names.  All of this is designed as an in-joke among Jewish viewers and also to fool the non-Jews in the movies.  Has anyone ever done a study of this? Can anyone note any other examples of this?  I used to watch the movies on AMC and had a quite hefty list of examples, but AMC doesn't show the movies anymore and I've lost my list---what a knucklehead!  BUCK

    Offline Stooge

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #1 on: December 06, 2004, 07:50:37 PM »
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  • Larry uses the Yiddish phrase "Huck mir a chynick" in several shorts (a few I can remember now are POP GOES THE EASEL, A PAIN IN THE PULLMAN, and MUTTS TO YOU).

    The "Ver g'harget" phrase that you mentioned was also said by Larry in DON'T THROW THAT KNIFE when Shemp and Larry are about to leave after they hear about Lucy Wycoff's jealous husband.

    There's a strange phrase that Moe uses a lot that sounds like "eengan zomen", that I think may be a Yiddish phrase.  He says it in PIES AND GUYS during the reading lessons scene when he's reading the book upside down, in THREE LITTLE PIRATES during the "Maha" dialect with Curly, and some others.

    Offline Baggie

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #2 on: December 06, 2004, 08:13:42 PM »
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  • Yeh I think he uses 'eengan zomen' in 'All Gummed Up' too, as an ingredient in the vitamin of youth.

    They use loads of Jewish/Yiddish phrase in the shorts
    The artist formerly known as Shempetta

    Pilsner Panther

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #3 on: December 06, 2004, 10:49:02 PM »
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  • Also, in "Slippery Silks," Curly tells a lady customer at the Madame De France dress salon to "Plotz, please," which is (kind of rude) Yiddish for "sit down," especially in the fake-polite way that Curly says it. It's sort of like the scene in "The Dentist" where W.C. Fields tells patient Elise Cavanna, "Park it in here, please," and points to the seat of his dentist chair.

    For all you fans of Yiddish (and Jewish-American culture in general), I'm planning a future Pilsner's Picks segment on Klezmer music and also Borscht Belt musical entertainers like Sophie Tucker, Irving Kaufman, Mickey Katz, and Benny Bell. That's coming early next year, probably in February.

    "And I heard him exclaim, as he drove out of sight,"
    "Good yontif to all, and to all a good night!"

    —Clement Clark Moskovitz (1843-1912)

     [twitch]
    « Last Edit: December 07, 2004, 03:24:09 AM by Pilsner Panther »

    Offline Stooge

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #4 on: December 07, 2004, 07:47:37 AM »
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  • Moe also says "Plotz" in I'LL NEVER HEIL AGAIN to Curly when the Stooges sit down to eat the turkey.  I think he also says it to the DePuysters in HEAVENLY DAZE.

    Offline FineBari3

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #5 on: December 07, 2004, 01:03:14 PM »
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  • There used to be a website that had a translator on it called the "Yid-O-Matic", that gave the Yiddish translation to the English word you typed in!

    I love hearing when the Boys use Yiddish! So crazy you'll Plotz!
    Mar-Jean Zamperini
    "Moe is their leader." -Homer Simpson

    Pilsner Panther

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #6 on: December 08, 2004, 09:31:02 PM »
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  • There used to be a website that had a translator on it called the "Yid-O-Matic", that gave the Yiddish translation to the English word you typed in!

    I love hearing when the Boys use Yiddish! So crazy you'll Plotz!

    That site is The Yiddish Radio Project, which is still around:

    http://www.yiddishradioproject.org/

    Almost all of the program material comes from transcription discs in the collection of long-time New York City talk show host Joe Franklin, whose "Memory Lane" program I used to watch when I was growing up. Mr. Franklin was an obvious influence on me, what with my lifelong pack-rat-type record collecting hobby.

    Joe Franklin is probably the greatest pack rat of them all. He even owned one of Curly's original "doibies," which was auctioned off a couple of years ago for (if I remember right) about $24,000.

    I can't remember if any of the Stooges were ever on "Memory Lane," but the guests were a constant parade of old-time film, stage, and radio stars... all very entertaining to a young kid who was born half a century too late.

    You haven't lived, bubeleh, until you've heard Seymour Rexite sing a medley of songs from "Oklahoma" in Yiddish!

     8)
    « Last Edit: December 09, 2004, 12:46:04 AM by Pilsner Panther »

    Offline Buck18

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #7 on: December 10, 2004, 11:10:39 AM »
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  • Joe Franklin!  A classic---Pilsener, youmust be from NY.  I used to watch his show all the time on, I think, Channel 9. What I most remember was his laquered hair---shiny enough to see your face in, hard enough to bounce a dime off of.  I think there is a CD available (on either Collectors Choice or CDNow) ---"The Best of Joe Franklin", in which some of his faves are out there to be enjoyed.  He was one of a kind---one of the links to old style NY showbiz, like Joey Adams and those other guys.


    Meanwhile, thanks to all for the info on Yiddish in Stooges movies.  I agree---whenever they use a Yiddish term, it enriches the already funny stuff going on. BUCK

    Offline garystooge

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #8 on: December 10, 2004, 04:14:39 PM »
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  • Here are a few more additions to the Yiddish list.

    In "G.I. Wanna Home", the Stooges' fiancees live at 418 Meshugenah Avenue. "Meshugenah" means "crazy".

    While most of the ingredients used in making rocket fuel, fountain of youth, etc are just gibberish, one of the ingredients is "meshugass", which comes from the same root as "meshugenah" and means "crazy antics" or "insanity".

    In "Rusty Romeos", Larry makes "Flippers Flappy Fablongent Flapjacks".
    In yiddish, "farblongent" basically means "lost, beweildered or confused".

    The expression Larry uses in "Mutts to You" while dressed as the Chinese laundryman is, "Hak mir nit kain tsheinik and I don't mean efsher". This translates as "dont bother me, get off my back and I don't mean maybe." (the literal translation of the expression according to my Yiddish-English dictionary is "don't bang on the tea kettle").

    In "Love at First Bite" and maybe in the remake "Fifi Blows her Top", the cafe is called the "Cafe La-Mer-Essen".  In yiddish this means "let's eat".

    The "Emir of Shmow" in "Malice in the Palace" comes from the Yiddish word "Shmow", which is more or less now Americanized and basically means a naive, easy to deceive person. I think Schmow was also used in "Cuckoo on a Choo Choo"

    The Stooges also use Hebrew in a few shorts. In "Half Shot Shooters", when the war ends they say "Mazel Tov" ("congratulations") and "L'chaim" ("to life"). I believe Curly also says "Mazel Tov" in "Calling All Curs" after Garcon gives birth but am not sure.
    Gary
    « Last Edit: December 10, 2004, 04:46:29 PM by garystooge »

    Pilsner Panther

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #9 on: December 10, 2004, 06:40:24 PM »
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  • Joe Franklin!  A classic---Pilsener, youmust be from NY.


    Oh yeah, I'm a Noo Yawk boy, all right... born at Jewish Memorial Hospital in Inwood (literally in the shadow of the Cloisters) which was closed a long time ago.

    Another one of my adolescent heroes— Times Square/Broadway division— was the late Jack Meltzer, who owned the Merit Music Shop on West 45th Street. At any given time, Jack had about 80% of Victor's 1920's-30's-40's output of 78's in his store, along with a lot of rarities on other labels (this was in the 1970's!), and he also had a genuine photographic memory. If you gave him any Victor, Columbia, Brunswick, or Decca serial number from about 1900 through 1950 or so, he'd tell you the artist, the songs on both sides, and the release year of the record, and he was never wrong! You just couldn't stump Jack. He was like an uncle to me (we weren't related), and I really miss him. In a very real way, Pilsner's Picks is an effort to carry on his legacy.

    I've been lucky enough to have some excellent teachers in my life, but none of them was in the "official" classroom.

    A comment that I'm sure Rob will appreciate...

     ;)


    Offline Dunrobin

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #10 on: December 10, 2004, 08:20:50 PM »
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  • I've been lucky enough to have some excellent teachers in my life, but none of them was in the "official" classroom.

    A comment that I'm sure Rob will appreciate...

     ;)


    Indeed, I do!  Considering that I stopped paying attention after the third grade, and started teaching myself...  (Don't even get me started!)  [bitchin]

    BTW - I'm a native New Yorker, myself; born in Freeport on Long Island, as was my father and older brother (but my little brother is a Connecticut Yankee.)  My father's parents hailed from Brooklyn, and my mother came from Buffalo; ya can't get much more native than that! [wink]

    Offline Dr. Hugo Gansamacher

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #11 on: November 17, 2010, 10:23:32 AM »
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  • Moe also says "Plotz" in I'LL NEVER HEIL AGAIN to Curly when the Stooges sit down to eat the turkey.  I think he also says it to the DePuysters in HEAVENLY DAZE.

    I know that this is a very old thread, but the topic seems to me worth keeping alive. On this particular matter, I wanted to point out that Moe's utterance of "Platz!" in I'll Never Heil Again is a perfectly ordinary, if rather curt, utterance in German. "Platz" means "place," including "place to sit," "Platz nehmen" means "Take a seat" or "Take your seat(s)," and "Platz!" by itself is an abrupt way of ordering someone to sit down, as Moe does to Curly here. Of course, "platzen" is also a verb meaning "to burst" in German and "to vomit" in Yiddish, and the Stooges were undoubtedly mindful that more of their viewers would know the word from Yiddish than from German; so the Yiddish meaning is certainly in play here too. But it is not primary.

    Offline Dr. Hugo Gansamacher

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #12 on: November 23, 2010, 06:26:08 PM »
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  • Moe also says "Plotz" in I'LL NEVER HEIL AGAIN to Curly when the Stooges sit down to eat the turkey.  I think he also says it to the DePuysters in HEAVENLY DAZE.

    There is a bit of Yiddish in the same short that is missing from the transcript on this site: after Curly has busted Moe's globe over his head, when Moe says to him, "You nitwit! You've shattered my world!", Curly shouts "Gevalt!" as he runs away in terror. You can hear the line around 3:35 in the video embedded below.

    In "Rusty Romeos", Larry makes "Flippers Flappy Fablongent Flapjacks".
    In yiddish, "farblongent" basically means "lost, beweildered or confused".

    As has been noted in the thread "Name that classic line" (posts 220, 224, and 225), Larry uses the same expression in FLING IN THE RING: "He'll ferblanje him!"

    [youtube=425,350]hbqKdMjhEQM&NR=1[/youtube]

    Offline Boid Brain

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #13 on: November 26, 2010, 12:55:55 PM »
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  • "Farblongent!" I'v heard that word somewhere before.....ah.....wasn't it uttered by the singing slut right before Hedly Lamar slapped the shit outa' her in "Blazing Saddles?"

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #14 on: November 26, 2010, 05:20:24 PM »
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  • "Farblongent!" I'v heard that word somewhere before.....ah.....wasn't it uttered by the singing slut right before Hedly Lamar slapped the shit outa' her in "Blazing Saddles?"

    "Hedly" Lamar? That pretty much tops your repeated misspelling of Jim Thorpe's name.
     [pie]
    But seriously, folks... You can always expect a healthy dose of Yiddish in a Mel Brooks movie.   

    Offline Dr. Hugo Gansamacher

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #15 on: November 26, 2010, 05:30:26 PM »
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  • "Hedly" Lamar? That pretty much tops your repeated misspelling of Jim Thorpe's name.
     [pie]
    But seriously, folks... You can always expect a healthy dose of Yiddish in a Mel Brooks movie.   

    Okay, so he left out an "e"—as well as a final "r": the name of the character is Hedley Lamarr, according to IMDB. What's the big deal?

    Offline Boid Brain

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #16 on: November 27, 2010, 10:44:25 AM »
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  • Okay, so he left out an "e"—as well as a final "r": the name of the character is Hedley Lamarr, according to IMDB. What's the big deal?
    He's just a confrontational asshole. I ignore. ::)

    Offline Dr. Hugo Gansamacher

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #17 on: December 10, 2010, 12:42:37 PM »
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  • An expression derived from Hebrew that I just observed in Musty Musketeers, delivered, along with a blow to the head, by Moe to Shemp: "Thou art a matzah-head!"

    Offline Dr. Hugo Gansamacher

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #18 on: December 11, 2010, 09:41:42 AM »
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  • How silly of me not to mention the name of the character from whom I take my alias, which is another Yiddish phrase. "Gantzer macher" (to use a more conventional transliteration) means, roughly, "big shot."

    Offline Lefty

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #19 on: December 11, 2010, 10:01:44 AM »
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  • In "Hot Ice," referring to Barbara Bartay and her drink, "It's liquor."  "She's getting shikker."  "I'll do it quicker!"  "Shikker" means drunk.  Hic!  Also, I don't recall the Stooges ever saying "Shlemiel," "Oy," or "Nu?"

    Offline Dunrobin

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #20 on: December 11, 2010, 10:13:56 AM »
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  • In "Hot Ice," referring to Barbara Bartay and her drink, "It's liquor."  "She's getting shikker."  "I'll do it quicker!"  "Shikker" means drunk.  Hic!  Also, I don't recall the Stooges ever saying "Shlemiel," "Oy," or "Nu?"

    Thanks - now that bit makes sense to me.  Not knowing much Yiddish, I've always heard that as "She's getting sicker," which didn't make much sense.  :-\

    Offline BeAStooge

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #21 on: December 11, 2010, 11:52:56 AM »
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  • I don't recall the Stooges ever saying "Shlemiel"

    In LOVE AT FIRST BITE (1950).

    Offline Dr. Hugo Gansamacher

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #22 on: December 11, 2010, 03:38:26 PM »
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  • In LOVE AT FIRST BITE (1950).

    Please tell who uses the word and when in that short.

    In Hokus Pokus, Moe brings out some talcum powder that he identifies as "Shlemil Number 8."

    Offline Shemp_Diesel

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #23 on: December 11, 2010, 04:25:38 PM »
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  • From the map bit in Stone Age Romeos, the country of Ferblongent.



    Now you ask me if I believe a man can become a wolf. Well, if you mean can he take on the physical characteristics of an animal, no, it's fantastic. However, I do believe that most anything can happen to a man in his own mind.

    Offline BeAStooge

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    Re: Attention Jewish Knuckleheads: Yiddish in Stooges Movies
    « Reply #24 on: December 11, 2010, 07:00:31 PM »
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  • Please tell who uses the word and when in that short.

    Shemp... it's in the "Quotes" database.

     


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