Flying Elephants (1928)

Article 3494 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 2-5-2011
Posting Date: 3-9-2011
Directed by Frank Butler and Hal Roach
Featuring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, James Finlayson
Country: USA
What it is: Silent caveman comedy

When the king orders all residents of the tribe to be married or face banishment, two cavemen find themselves vying for the attention of the same cavewoman.

It’s great to go back to the silent era for a bit and revisit old comedy teams like Laurel and Hardy. This one has its moments, but is a little disappointing since the boys don’t really work as a team. There’s a few scenes near the beginning with Hardy, the middle section is with Laurel, but they don’t meet for a final battle until the end of the movie, so you don’t get the usual relationship between the two. On top of the caveman milieu, the short actually provides some flying elephants (in a short animated bit inspired by an offhand piece of dialogue), and it has what may be a dinosaur; all I know is that Laurel is threatened by a big creature at one point, but I couldn’t get a good look at it (it seemed roughly the size of an ox). The highlights include Laurel’s fishing technique, and the club battle between the pair.


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