Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Finishing Touch

Viimeinen silaus. US 1928. PC: Hal Roach Studios. P: Hal Roach. Supervising director: Leo McCarey. D: Clyde Bruckman. Intertitles: H.M. Walker. DP: George Stevens. Property master: Thomas Benton Roberts. ED: Richard C. Currier. Cast: Stan Laurel (Stan), Oliver Hardy (Ollie), Dorothy Coburn (nurse), Edgar Kennedy (policeman), Sam Lufkin (owner of the house). Silent, 1,33:1, 19 min. A print of the Kirchmedia edition viewed at Cinema Orion, Helsinki, 18 Nov 2010. - Revisited a short Laurel and Hardy masterpiece that I had previously seen only on tv / video / dvd. There is a slightly duped look in the print which may mean that no brilliant original full frame materials exist. Even so, it's a joy. We know from the start what to expect. The expression "finishing the house" is so ominous that we are not surprised by what but how it happens. I was laughing already when Ollie steps grandiloquently forward from their truck. Stan and Ollie know how to parody everyday gestures and actions, and here they are at their best.

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