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Love 'Em and Weep (1927)

Passed | | Comedy, Short | 12 June 1927 (USA)
Caught between a rock and a hard place, an honest man has to cover for his partner's shenanigans when an old flame threatens to destroy both his career and his marriage with a compromising photograph. Will she spare him?

Writers:

Hal Roach, H.M. Walker (titles)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Mae Busch ... Peaches - the Old Flame
Stan Laurel ... Romaine Ricketts
James Finlayson ... Titus Tillsbury (as Jimmie Finlayson)
Oliver Hardy ... Judge Chigger
Charlotte Mineau ... Mrs. Aggie Tillsbury
Vivien Oakland ... Mrs. Ricketts
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Storyline

Old flame (Busch) shows up to blackmail married businessman (Finlayson). He enlists a friend (Laurel) to keep her away from his home and wife. Confusion prevails when she crashes a house party. Written by Herman Seifer <alagain@aol.com>

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Plot Keywords:

1920s | 20s | love | marriage | shenanigans | See All (62) »

Genres:

Comedy | Short

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Since both Laurel and Hardy appear in the film it is considered an early Laurel and Hardy film despite the fact that Hardy's role is just a bit part, and they barely share any scenes in the film at all. See more »

Goofs

As Stan, Jimmy and Mae are getting ready to leave the house. They open the door and it is night time outside. When they are seen outside. It is day time. See more »

Quotes

Titus Tillsbury: [to his wife] I'll bet you suspect something!
See more »

Connections

Remade as Chickens Come Home- (1931) See more »

User Reviews

 
Every Married Man Should Have His Fling -- But Be Careful Not to Get Flung Too Far
30 January 2005 | by wmorrow59See all my reviews

This is one of Laurel & Hardy's "pre-team" comedies, one of several shorts both men appeared in more or less coincidentally before they developed their familiar childlike characters, i.e. the duo with the derby hats we all know and love. In this go-round Jimmy Finlayson is basically the lead player (although Mae Busch originally received top billing), and yet Stan steals the show in a prominent supporting role. Oliver Hardy is relegated to a minor part, and he dutifully reacts to the antics of the other players without any real comic business of his own to perform. Four years later, however, after Laurel & Hardy had become the top comics on the Hal Roach lot, Love 'Em and Weep would be remade as a talkie and retitled Chickens Come Home, with Hardy in the lead, Stan and Mae Busch repeating their earlier roles, and Finlayson reduced to playing Hardy's butler. Something of a comedown for Fin, though it must be said he played his part to a fare-thee-well on that occasion.

At any rate, Love 'Em and Weep is quite enjoyable in its own right, that is, if you enjoy a good old fashioned marital farce. All the ingredients are in place: Finlayson is a respectable bourgeois businessman (profession not specified) who is thrown for a loop when an old girlfriend pops up and attempts to blackmail him. His wife, of course, enters at an inopportune moment and the girlfriend is forced to hide in the bathroom. Finlayson must then explain the presence of her cigarette, fur stole, etc., to his gimlet-eyed wife. The angry girlfriend later shows up uninvited at Finlayson's home while he's entertaining guests and creates even more havoc.

This sort of thing can be tiresome if not well handled -- lesser comedians cranked out dozens of interchangeable short comedies along these lines -- but in this case, the first-rate performers manage to squeeze a lot of laughs out of the situation. Mae Busch is every inch the foxy, smirking troublemaker in the opening scene, and Finlayson's pop-eyed double-takes are as strenuous as ever. Okay, so maybe he was a one-note performer, but he certainly perfected that one note! Stan is quite funny as Finlayson's assistant, a man who (we are told) has great control over women, although we are offered no evidence of this. Quite the contrary! Stan's hair was still slicked down at this point, but he'd already perfected that familiar look of blank vacancy, and when the plot reaches a crisis we get a quick sample of the Laurel Cry.

Love 'Em and Weep is by no means the best comedy short ever made, but it's also far from the worst, and it amounts to a very pleasant diversion for the undemanding viewer. For me, this movie also served to demonstrate the difference an audience can make when viewing a silent comedy of this vintage. I first saw the film at home on TV with a friend and found it moderately amusing, but later, when I was fortunate enough to see it again at a public screening, with live music and an appreciative audience, it was as if a fossilized dinosaur skeleton had suddenly come back to life with a roar. Gags and pratfalls that seemed mildly funny at home rocked the house when seen with a crowd. I can only urge interested viewers to try to see these movies with an audience whenever possible, and if there's no place in your community where this is taking place, then start your own Film Society!


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 June 1927 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Better Husbands Week See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hal Roach Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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