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Author Topic: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita  (Read 832 times)

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Offline metaldams

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Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
« on: October 11, 2016, 06:38:30 PM »
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  • http://www.threestooges.net/filmography/episode/366
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0038951/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=piAY_mr7p_0

    Watch SLAPPILY MARRIED in the link above (turn up the volume)



          Before we get to the final Shemp short next week, we review a Joe Derita solo film.  As I was putting the starting touches on this review, I comment to my brother I'm reviewing a Joe Derita solo film.  His response, "Sorry."  Indeed.

          A remake of Andy Clyde's MAID MADE MAD, which I have never seen, writing wise, this is the typical let's have one real cool slapstick scene to start and then have the rest involve some confusion with a jealous husband when the comedian is really innocent.  Ho-hum.  Again, a tired device.  Done only a few times in Stooge shorts, this seems to be much more common outside the Stooges, as it is with Charley Chase, Shemp solo, and here.

          That opening slapstick scene is constructed fine.  Steaming waffle irons, dough over heads and faces, pratfalls, ties caught in doors, broken dishes, this is a cliche I like!  The problem is the comedian himself.  Derita is what I call a homogenized comedian.  He can fall decently, pretty well for a man his size, actually, but not as funny as Buster Keaton.  He reacts just enough to not be a dead pan comedian, but not well enough to be memorably expressive.  If Shemp was in this scene, you can picture noise reactions, one liners, and funnier facial expressions.  Derita just goes through the motions of the slapstick, adding absolutely nothing to the proceedings.  His big line?  A gentle look at the pancakes, observing, "Nice and fluffy."  Nice and banal.

          Then there is the scene where for one minute, he bumps into some Bud Abbott clone firing line after line of misconstrued logic in rapid succession.  Lou Costello would slow burn and eventually explode.  Derita?  Just one calmly delivered puncline about hot air that's not all that funny.

          The saving grace about this short is Christine McIntyre, Jean Willes, and Dorothy Granger all appear.  The latter two fighting over a hat would be a highlight if the comedian in between them had a pulse.  Sorry guys, I just don't think Joe Derita had it in him to carry a film by himself.

    4/10



    Offline Big Chief Apumtagribonitz

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #1 on: October 11, 2016, 08:47:18 PM »
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  • Aww, come on.  This is as good as the first Shemp solos, Where the Pest Begins or Pick a Peck of Plumbers, which are also very light on character development.  Standard journeyman slapstick is what we've got here, and Joe carries the ball pretty well all by himself for the first five minutes or so.  Not a bad debut at all.  I've got no problem with it.

    Offline metaldams

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #2 on: October 11, 2016, 08:57:20 PM »
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  • Aww, come on.  This is as good as the first Shemp solos, Where the Pest Begins or Pick a Peck of Plumbers, which are also very light on character development.  Standard journeyman slapstick is what we've got here, and Joe carries the ball pretty well all by himself for the first five minutes or so.  Not a bad debut at all.  I've got no problem with it.

    Agreed about journeyman.  I'm a bigger fan of the first five minutes than the rest, but I can think of several other comedians who could make the slapstick scene more memorable.  I'd probably give this short a six if the rest of the material was better, or if it had Shemp in it with the same script.  Derita is not offensively bad, he's just bland, for the most part.  I just have trouble warming up to him as a solo comedian and would not give him two thoughts if he were not a Stooge.

    To be fair, I get tired of these jealous husband comedies, but if somebody reading this likes them, you'll like this better than I.  If you're a bigger Derita fan, same here.  I just don't get it.

    Offline Paul Pain

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #3 on: October 12, 2016, 07:49:45 AM »
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  • I side with the Big Chief.  DeRita is not the greatest at slap-stick, for certain.  But there is a certain charm... most of the time he acts the way someone would if these things were really happening to them.  But wow is the iron on the rear of the hiding innocent man overused... it's done in this, SUPER WOLF, and JIGGERS MY WIFE, and it's never funny in any of them. 

    This short is funny, but not hilarious.

    6/10 [poke] [poke] [poke] [poke] [poke] [poke]
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    Offline Big Chief Apumtagribonitz

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #4 on: October 12, 2016, 06:34:32 PM »
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  • Rather than bland, I could go along with meek.  Not Harry Langdon meek, but yes, too polite.  Especially compared to Shemp, who is generally aggressive.  I'm also glad he eventually lost the hair, which I think may have hidden some valuable facial reactions.  That really is a mop.  And yes, Shemp's muttering to himself does enhance chaotic scenes, Derita has none of that here. I also think that's a beautifully smooth move when he gets his tie in the drawer one instant before he slams it shut.  I'm still O K with him.

    Offline Dr. Hugo Gansamacher

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #5 on: October 17, 2016, 08:26:48 PM »
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  • A very perspicacious analysis, Metaldams (if I may be so . . . sesquipedalian!). It is easy to underestimate how well-conceived the opening sequence of disasters in the kitchen is, because the execution is so perfunctory and undistinguished. I don't think De Rita is positively bad, but he brings very little to the script.

    Jean Willes--my favorite evil gal of the Stooge shorts!

    Offline falsealarms

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #6 on: October 18, 2016, 02:28:25 PM »
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  • If anyone hasn't seen the solo shorts, check your local Ollies Bargain Outlet (if you have one). There have been reports online of the 3 disc "Rare Treasures" set turning up at Ollies for only $6.99.

    Offline falsealarms

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #7 on: October 18, 2016, 02:36:00 PM »
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  • Slappily Married is a pretty solid short in my book. I'd probably give it a 7/10.  The opening kitchen scene is great and the film sustains itself well from there on out. Unfortunately, the next three DeRita shorts aren't as good (especially the last one, Jitter Bughouse, one of the biggest stinkers of the entire Stooge cannon).

    Emil Sitka was cast as a lawyer in Slappily Married but it was cut before release. You can read Emil's recollections on the short at: http://www.emilsitka.com/slappilymarried1946.html

    Offline Paul Pain

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #8 on: October 19, 2016, 08:25:03 PM »
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  • I still say DeRita just plays it straight, which is its own brand of humor, but a little out of line with typical Jules White gore.

    THE GOOD BAD EGG is the one I anticipate...
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    Offline Shemp_Diesel

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    Re: Slappily Married (1946) - Joe Derita
    « Reply #9 on: March 20, 2017, 09:27:05 AM »
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  • Better than I remembered might be my best "summation" of this Joe Derita solo. I know I'm late to the party again in finally getting around to adding my 3 cents, but I really enjoyed this. I'm not sure if my enjoyment of it has anything to do with my softening towards Joe Derita himself over the last few years.

    About 7 to 10 years ago, my attitude towards Derita might have been the same as many--saying that he was a "passable" stooge and comedian at best, but I've really warmed to Joe to the point that I would say I like him as a comedian. "Like," not love like Curly or Shemp; but like nevertheless.

    Getting to Slappily Married, the whole kitchen scene doesn't set me on fire. I think I might be in agreement with Metal and a few other previous reviewers on how someone with a stronger comedic personality might have elevated the same material--and immediately my mind flashes to a Lou Costello.

    Fortunately, the laughs--for me--pick up big time when we get to Derita's place of business; the whole business with Jean Willes and the shoes. Now granted--over the course of the Shemp solos--the whole "jealous husband/boyfriend" angle got a bit tiring, but for whatever reasons it works here. Maybe because, for me, it didn't seem to dominate the whole short. But--for whatever reasons--I got a lot of laughs from Dick Wessel and Joe. And, oh yes, Jean and Dorothy fighting over the hat.

    I'll wrap this up by saying this was a splendid 17 minute ride for me, given that I didn't have strong recollections of it before watching it again. I'm pretty sure all the Derita solos are not this good & I'll try not to get my hopes too high in the future, but--taken for what it is--Derita acquits himself quite well in this first solo outing.

    7.5 out of 10...
    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.