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Who Makes Ya Laff?


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Today on the Happy Birthday thread I listed comic Eddie Bracken which brought a discussion of how he made us laugh. Since we seldom mention comedy stars that made us laugh (a difficult feat indeed) how about giving them the spotlight once again.

Who makes ya laff and in which films?

I'll start off with my favorites Laurel & Hardy especially in "Saps at Sea", "Block-Heads", "Way Out West", "Sons of the Desert" and "Our Relations".



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Eddie Bracken "miracle at Morgan's Creek" when he puts on

the soldiers uniform and it doesn't fit him & when he sees all the babies at the end of the movies its hilarious!...wonderful comedy love him in everything!...

Marie Dressler- "Dinner At Eight (read forum on boards)

Marjorie Main & Percy Kilbride -Ma & Pa Kettle movies

Ma & Pa Kettle Go To Town -1950

""""""""""""""Back on the Farm-1951

"""""""""""""" At The Fair-1952

"""""""""""""""""""On Vacation-1953

"""""""""""""""""""At Home -1954

"""""""""""""""""""At Waikiki-1955

Judy Canova- underated comic actress i think

Louisianna Hayride 1944 & Oklahoma Annie 1952.

Monte Wooley & Mary Wickes -"The Man Who Came To Dinner

Carman Miranda "Weekend in Havana 1941. all those fruit

hats she wore what a riot!......* Just a note Mary Wickes

also played a nun who drives the bus & gym teacher in

"trouble With Angels" & "Where Angels Go Trouble Follows"

she was a supporting actress in all her roles and

she had comic presence on film that will never compare

to anyone in our generation. Thank Mongo for starting this list its about time we remember our great funny people on film.


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Ginger Rogers, Diana Lynn and all the great actors in The Major and the Minor make me laugh whenever I watch it. This has to be one of the funniest movies ever. The scene where the boys try to get their arms around Ginger (the Maginot Line bit) to kiss her is especially hilarious. Also, the scene where she first dresses up as a young girl and has the con man buy her ticket is priceless. Billy Wilder was a genius. Wilder's movie Some Like it Hot was also fantastic.

Cary Grant also makes me laugh, especially in I was a Male War Bride.

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Hey Mongo! Thanks for replying to my post in the Birthday thread about Eddie Bracken and starting this thread for us. I totally agree that we tend to only talk about drama and it's actors, and kind of forget about comedy and it's actors in our discussions, even though there was a lot of comedy in lots of movies made by some pretty serious actors (Kate Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Cary Grant, Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire come quickly to mind).


Loliteblue already talked about Marie Dressler and Ma & Pa Kettle, so I'll just add a few personal comments to her excellent post.


I crack up just about every time I see Dressler do or say something funny...her timing is perfect! Did anyone see her in "Tilly's Punctured Romance" with Chaplin? She was fantastic and created a laugh riot throughout the film. And, because I have a special love for Marjorie Main (she hated 'Main' by the way but couldn't think of anything better to change it to, so it lasted a lifetime) so I watch every movie she appears in, and there are a huge amount of them. In many of them, she is the one (with her comic presense) who holds the movie together when it starts to lag, or even if it's not.


Of the comedy teams, I like Abbott and Costello the best.


Eddie Bracken has always been a favorite. Even in the second "Home Alone" movie, I loved seeing him. Eddie Cantor never fails to crack me up. Same thing with Jimmy Durante. Oscar Lavant was not identified as a comedian, but he could tossed out one-liner's that kept me grinning for days. Burns and Allen, Bob Hope, Red Skelton, and Jack Benny are in a class of their own. There are so many more that I'm leaving out!


And, of course, I can't leave this discussion without mentioning Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, Stan Laural & Oliver Hardy, W.C. Fields, and The Little Rascals.




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I'm sure I'll think of more later, but for now I'll mention "The Ghost Breakers" (1940) starring Bobe Hope & Paulette Goddard. This movie REALLY cracks me up! I have it on tape and watch it often when I'm in the mood for a good laugh.


I'm also a Laural & Hardy fan....Mongo already mentioned two of my favorites: "Sons of the Desert" (..."that's our story and we're stuck with it. In it." *lol* love that line!) & "Way out West".

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I must add two of my favorite character players Thelma Ritter in "A Letter to Three Wives", "All About Eve" and "The Mating Season" (seldom shown) also

S.Z. 'Cuddles' Sakall in just about anything he did especially his bit with Bogart in "Thank Your Lucky Stars".

When stella wants to laugh she pops in "The Ghost Breakers" and when I want to laugh I pop in "The Sunshine Boys". It just cracks me up.



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Most of the comedies the following have been involved in:

Cary Grant (My Favorite Wife, Bring Up Baby, etc), Jean Arthur (Easy Living, Talk of the Town, etc), James Stewart (Destry Rides Again, Harvey, etc), Barbara Stanwyck (Lady Eve, Mad Miss Manton, etc, William Powell(My Man Godfrey, Star Of Midnight, etc), Myrna Loy( The Thin, Mr. Blandings..., etc), Ginger Rogers (Vivacious Lady, Shall We Dance, etc), David Nivens (Bachalor Mother, Bishops Wife, etc).

I always enjoyed Laurel and Hardy, Abbott and Costello, Lewis and Martin. Never got into the three Stooges or the Marx Brothers.

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bggalaxy, I agree with almost everything you like, except I also like The Marx Bros. A&C and Martin & Lewis are O.K. A&C MEET FRANKENSTEIN is great. A more recent comedy I thought was very funny was SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL SHERIFF! with James Garner & a wonderful supporting cast. I also thought DOWN WITH LOVE with Renee Zellweger & Ewan McGregor was a great spoof of the Doris Day-Rock Hudson era comedies. MR. BLANDINGS gets better every time I watch it! Cary Grant & Myrna Loy are amazing! Overall, my favorites are from the 1930s. I also love Powell, Arthur, Grant, Stewart, Irene Dunne & Claudette Colbert.

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My favorite comedians of all time:


* W. C. Fields - particularly in The Bank Dick (1940), It's a Gift (1934) and The Man on the Flying Trapeze (1935). I'd say Bank Dick is his best film, but the first thirty minutes of Man on the Flying Trapeze are probably the funniest work he ever did.


*Jack Benny - I like his radio show probably better than any other, but he was also wonderful in To Be or Not to Be (1942) and the rarely seen The Meanest Man in the World (1943).


*Bob Hope - only I have to be careful - less is more with Hope, in my opinion. I loved The Cat and the Canary (1939), the Road films (especially Morocco and Utopia) and The Ghost Breakers (1940)


*and the Marx Brothers - especially Duck Soup (1933), A Day at the Races (1937) and A Night at the Opera (1935).


and then there's The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (1944), A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966), Bringing Up Baby (1938), My Man Godfrey (1936), and Auntie Mame (1958), all of which I've seen more times than I can count.

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3 examples from the 3 Stooges: Moe playing Hitler loses his mustache: "Hey buddy, gimmee back my personality. Thanks" Larry: "Just my TYPE....a WOMAN!!! Curley:" How DARE you hit me in the head?You know I'm not normal. Get past the eyes pokes,folks. Heh heh heh.

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  • 1 month later...

Apart from the obvious? ;)


Well... Cary Grant. ("Oh, HANG Hitler and stick him on the funny pages!")


Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon. (We are all out of cornflakes F.U. It took me three days to figure out the F.U. was Felix Unger!!!)


William Powell (Myrna Loy:"I read you were shot five times

in the tabloids"

Powell "It's not true! He didn't come anywhere near my tabloids!")


Gene Wilder ("Put... the candle... BACK!")


Monty Python ("Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?")


Peter Sellers. ("Does your dog bite?"

"No." the dog bites the man.


"That is not my dog!")



Spencer Tracy. (Kate Hepburn:"Men. Women. The Same... well maybe there is a difference, but it's a little difference."

Tracy:"Well, as the French say, "Vive La Difference! Which means: Hurray for that little difference!")


and there so many more...






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Ditto on what is listed by littletramplover! I guess you like dry wit as well as I. Gotta be in a mood for the slapstick, though ... but sometimes it makes me laugh so hard that I cry.


My favorite wit has got to be William Powell, though. He and Myrna were great at the hi-brow stuff. And neither of them were afraid to stick it to ya.



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ITA, Basilfawlty...WC Fields was hilarious! I just ordered a video of some of his best, and can hardly wait for it to get here. I love him in everything I've seen him in so far. OMG, how about the store where Mr. Merkel (sp?) is sight-impaired and he goes straight for that huge display of light bulbs, as WC is helping a customer with her cumquats. The Marx Brothers were very funny, too!

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FRom "Animal House": "I suggest you start drinking heavily." Young boy reading Playboy when the coed dressed as a bunny crashes thru the window onto his bed: "Thank you God!!!" One of the more subtle gags: When Bluto is watching Mandy Pepperidge topless, a physical reaction to this sight gently pushes him and the ladder he is on away from the house and he rides it to a crash below.

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One scene that never fails to make me laugh.. maybe you'll see this movie on AMC sometime, LOL:


Tommy Boy.


Especially the scene where Tommy and Richard are in the car trying to settle on a station to listen to. Tommy wants hard rock, Richard wants fluffy Euro pop. LOL They settle on The Carpenters singing "Superstar." And they're like:


"Sheeeyeah. Talk about LAME."

"Yeah, totally."

"I can live with it if you can."

"Suit yourself."


And then about 60 seconds later, they're both bawling their eyes out and singing along passionately with Karen Carpenter. :D:P .......... Until the hood of their car flies up blocking their entire view and they end up spinning out all over the road, and taking a road sign w/them. LOLOLOL...........






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FRom "The Odd Couple": "We have green sandwiches and brown sanwiches." Murray: "What are the green sandwiches?" Oscar: "It's either very new cheese or very old meat." Murray: "I'll take a brown sandwich." Oscar : about Felix after he left: "Right now he's out there crying and sulking...and having a wonderful time."

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