Wednesday, May 28, 2014

A Three Clowns

For some reason, I thought of what Jason Robards said in A Thousand Clowns.  He described people going to work as a horrible sight.  Well, New York tends to amplify everything, including the mundane, for one.  Meanwhile, on the other side of the spectrum, I can't remember a time when a Stooge told the other Stooges that they needed to find a job.  Somehow it's always the given assumption, with the promise of them totally f... messing things up.  But this is Joe Besser we're talking about, and the Stooges are now doing lots of things they never thought they'd be doing.  Space Ship Sappy, as you can probably guess from the title, is their first sci-fi outing.  Well, flying saucers were all the rage at the time.  Plus, there's just something about Besser that makes one long for the solitude of outer space.
If nothing else, depending on your perspective, there's a nice play on words as the Stooges go to apply for a job as "sailors" on a ship.  Spaceship, that is.  Astronaut (or astro-man) might not have been a household word at that point, and the Stooges weren't too big on etymological trailblazing.  Anyway, to smooth things along, we learn that the guy preparing to go into space has had trouble finding willing applicants, so this time he won't tell the Stooges anything until it's too late.  Good writing!
Moe gets in a sly joke.  As with most of these space adventures, and so they don't have to wear the spacesuits all the time, the professor's daughter declares that the planet Sunev (or Venus backwards... get it?) has an atmosphere much like earth.  "Smog!" says Moe cheerfully.  And as with most of these low budget space adventures, the Stooges run afoul of alien Amazon women.  And cannibals to boot.  So these alien cannibal Amazon women are just about to make a feast of the Stooges, until something even more primal comes along.  The Stooges escape and it's back to earth they go.
I just hate to include a second picture, but even the Stooges weren't above using a different shot now and again.  It's not quite one of those half-telephoto, half-wide angle lenses, but it's close.  I wonder if Joe insisted he get to be close up.
I won't spoil the ending to this one, mostly because I want to parcel out the suffering.  You must suffer as I have suffered, but I will say that it kinda negates everything that came before.  The Stooges don't do it often, just with the occasional remake.  The point is they get to get all dressed up and look like human beings, for God's sake.  Hopefully not for too long, though.

Good double bill with: A Grand Day Out. (YouTube)

-so sayeth The Movie Hooligan

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