Watch HABEAS CORPUS in the link above
HABEAS CORPUS is really a strange film, but also a fun one. If one were to analyze this too much, it doesn't hold water plot wise. There's some mad professor who is able to convince Stan and Ollie to dig up a dead body in a graveyard for some bizarre brain experiment. The professor's butler is an undercover cop who makes sure the professor gets arrested right away. With Stan and Ollie, it would make sense for him to do the same, but instead decides to play some cat and mouse game where he tries to spook them out in a graveyard. However, if the cop did what makes sense, we wouldn't have much of a comedy, as this strange premise sets up all the gags in the short. There are plenty of Laurel and Hardy films where plot gag and character are all perfectly in sync, but in this one, let's just say it's character first, gag second, and plot in an easy last place.
The joy of this film is watching Stan and Ollie as performers, especially Ollie. The first shot of them in this film is only of their hands. Stan's hand attempts to knock on the door, but Ollie's hand slaps Stan's hand and makes a gesture as if he wants to knock on the door. Just a shot of Ollie's hand makes it so obvious by the movement it is Oliver Hardy, a testament to the wonderful and distinctive pantomime he does. A beautifully subtle moment.
The rest of the short is just fun to watch because of the faces and reactions Stan and Ollie make as well as that graveyard setting. This appears to be the same graveyard as the one in DO DETECTIVES THINK? The gag with Ollie climbing the wet paint pole, complete with hand prints on backside, is a highlight, as is any attempt of Stan and Ollie trying to catapult each other over the cemetery wall. Ollie falling through the brick wall with his girth is another slapstick highlight.
Oh, and the ending gag is....another mud puddle! I love these mud puddles, but I'm also now starting to think of them as stock in a Hal Roach film as a sound effect for an eye poke is in a Columbia short!