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Author Topic: We Faw Down (1928) - Laurel and Hardy  (Read 871 times)

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Offline metaldams

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We Faw Down (1928) - Laurel and Hardy
« on: May 17, 2015, 11:50:47 AM »
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    Watch WE FAW DOWN in the link above

          Another domestic comedy, the kind of somewhat serious look at marriage you'd never see in a Stooge short.  The characters in this one are not as fleshed out as they are in THEIR PURPLE MOMENT.  In that film, the wives are portrayed as lusting money, the boys as lusting the flesh, and you feel all the characters delightfully get their just deserts.  Here, the wives are simply characters who are lied to, and the boys have to expand on a lie because they are victims of circumstance.  I guess the wives would not have believed the truth. Truthfully, this comedy could have been done by any run of the mill silent comedian and this style usually is better suited to talkies.  Tons of domestic silent comedy shorts have been made with plots like this, and I'd normally rate them a five or six, but this gets elevated because of the actors involved.

          The joy of this short is simply watching the faces of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy and the way the try to explain to their wives where they've been.  Watching Stan crack up in laughter when he realizes their plight is lost and watching an embarrassed Oliver Hardy sheepishly sit down and do whatever finger gestures his nervous system can't control is a pure pleasure.  Oh, and speaking of faces, some of those close ups of Ollie's wife, played by Vivien Oakland, are also great. What an angry expression, I wouldn't piss her off if she were my wife.  Oh, and Stooge fans, the wife of Stan is played by Bess Flowers!

          The other thing about WE FAW DOWN is it kind of plays like a warm up for SONS OF THE DESERT, namely the already mentioned part where the boys have to explain where they are when unbeknownst to them, they've already been caught in a lie.  This kind of humor works better with sound and the more developed build up in the more famous feature, but like I said, those wonderful comic faces do make this enjoyable on its own.  Also want to throw in randomly the business with Stan and Kay Deslys at the kitchen table is a fun throwaway bit.  The tongue and eyebrows twitches give Stan a fun, otherworldly quality, and I like the way Ollie looks on as an amused audience member, just like us.

          One final thing, since this is a Stooge board.  The boys help a girl pick up a hat and get their clothes drenched in the process.  The girls, who are the girlfriends of gangsters, invite the boys to their apartment to change their clothes.  The gangsters catch the boys in the apartment.  Sounds like THREE LITTLE PIGSKINS.


    Offline Big Chief Apumtagribonitz

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    Re: We Faw Down (1928) - Laurel and Hardy
    « Reply #1 on: May 17, 2015, 12:10:06 PM »
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  • Good catch about Three Little Pigskins.

    Offline Paul Pain

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    Re: We Faw Down (1928) - Laurel and Hardy
    « Reply #2 on: June 19, 2015, 01:15:27 PM »
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  • Boooooo!  Just about the dumbest plot ever... 4/10
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    Offline Umbrella Sam

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    Re: We Faw Down (1928) - Laurel and Hardy
    « Reply #3 on: September 08, 2017, 05:11:30 PM »
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  • The first part of this short is pretty bad. Laurel and Hardy's attempt to sneak past their wives seems painfully obvious considering that they are plotting directly within their views. To THEIR PURPLE MOMENT's credit, it did make it clear that the wife was hiding while Stan was putting away the money, so he had no way of knowing he was being watched. It also seems odd that the wives don't appear to buy the Orpheum story one bit, yet they get so concerned about their husbands when the Orpheum burns down.

    The scene at the apartment mainly consists of Laurel and one of the women constantly messing with each other's hair and faces. It's not particularly funny at first and it continues to drag along. The only other thing of note during this is the brief chase after Laurel calls her fat, which goes to show how dragged out this particular scene is.

    Thankfully, the second half of this short is somewhat good. Vivian Oakland's constantly angry face is really good and the boy's usage of charades as a way of explaining their story makes for a funny scene. It's a very good use of the silent medium and is definitely the highlight for me. That final shot of all the men jumping out the window is also noteworthy and was later used in BLOCK-HEADS. Still, the second half is not great and doesn't entirely make up for the weak first half.

    Overall, describing this as a prototype version of SONS OF THE DESERT seems like a perfect fit. There are some really good ideas with this plot line, but it's flawed and bogged down by an incredibly boring first half. If anything, this is really just for Laurel and Hardy completionists.

    5 out of 10