Thursday, July 16, 2020

Thursday Movie Picks-Male Buddy Films



Mid Summer and I can’t believe it. It is so hot that we are getting close to 40C which is nuts. Our A/C went kaput and we needed a new motor..it was hell for 2 days. I never want to be without air again. Well, we all need air but you know what I mean. This week it is all about the male buddies on film and there is so much to choose from. Wandering through the Shelves picked another great week. There are some who show great on screen but didn’t like each other off screen and others who do the job and they go on their merry way. There are other male buddies who made great movies and were great friends off screen so this is my theme within a theme and here are my 3...

1. SONS OF THE DESERT-1933


Laurel and Hardy are one of the best comedy screen teams ever and it is a shame many people, today, don’t know who they are. Many actors/comedians, today, still imitate some of the things these 2 created. This film is so funny and it reminds me of a Fred Flintstone episode. The 2 are married( to women not themselves, remember it was 1933) but they belong to some men’s club of which they attend regularly. The club has decided they will be going to Chicago to have a fun meeting. Laurel doesn’t want to oppose his wife but Hardy talks him into it. When they get home, Hardy has forgotten that he was to take his wife to the mountains. He claims illness and that he and Laurel must go on a ship to Hawaii. Somehow, the women believe them and are stunned when the ship they were on sinks. The men are horrified too because they were whooping it up in Chicago. Now they must do their best to try to get out of this fine mess. This is so funny and, I think, one of their best. These 2 men were life long friends and so close that Laurel was devastated when Hardy passed away in 1957. Laurel said he lost his best friend(which he did) and that part of him was lost. Stan Laurel died in 1965.

2. THE CHEYENNE SOCIAL CLUB-1970


This is a very funny western starring James Stewart and Henry Fonda. These 2 met in the early '30s in a theatre group that also had Joshua Logan and Margaret Sullivan in the mix. Henry Fonda married Sullivan and Stewart loved her from afar. Jimmy Stewart and Henry Fonda went to Hollywood and were roommates and had a lot of fun during this time. They were so different, from their politics to their love life but, except for one time, where they argued over politics that almost ended their friendship, they remained devoted friends. I think they made 5 films ( Joel you can correct me on this) and this is one of the best. These 2 are cowboys on the range when Stewart’s character gets a letter saying his brother died and left him this club. Thinking he can start a bed and breakfast type place, he and his best friend go to this club only to find out it is a whore house run by the wonderful Shirley Jones. Now Hank takes full advantage of the  wonders of this establishment but Jimmy is none too happy. It  is a fun film that you can watch more than once. When Henry Fonda died in 1982, Jimmy Stewart was bereft. The great James Stewart died in 1997.

3. OUT TO SEA-1997


Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau were another great team, on and off the screen. They met when they made "The Fortune Cookie" and stayed friend until Matthau died in 2000. Jack Lemmon died, almost to the day, one year later. They made a total of 10 films together not counting Kotch where Matthau starred and Lemmon directed. You can Youtube these 2 and listen to their shenanigans while on different talk shows of the day. I love Grumpy Old Men and the sequel as well as the others but I felt this film was closest to them being buddies rather than adversaries. Lemmon plays a widow who doesn't do much in his life since her death. His Brother in Law, played by Matthau, gets into constant schemes. Matthau convinces Lemmon to take a cruise with him not knowing that they are actually working on the ship as dancers for the lonely women who would like to dance. The scumbag who lords over them is played by Data, er, I mean Brent Spiner who is funny in this and tries to outwit Matthau which he doesn't do. It is a nice romance between older people ...rarely seen, where each meet women on this ship. Lemmon meets a lovely widow, played by Gloria DeHaven and Dyan Cannon is the love for Matthau... who loves her money. Little does he know he is being scammed himself. Hal Lindon, Rue McLanahan and Donald O'Connor round out the rest. This was the last film role for Donald O'Connor, Edward Mulhare and Gloria DeHaven. If you want a very nice film that makes you laugh and forget a couple of hours, then watch this. 

Which 3 would you choose? 

51 comments:

  1. First thought: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
    I may have seen the Laurel and Hardy movie when I was a kid. Haven't seen the other two. I like your theme within a theme. Would not have thought of that.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, Birgit!

    I'm sorry that your air conditioner conked out and needed a new motor, dear friend. More power to ya!

    I agree that Laurel and Hardy were among the best comedy teams ever. They were truly funny guys. I start smiling the moment I lay eyes on them, and that means I am primed for laughter. I grew up watching Lauren and Hardy films on TV. Dick Van Dyke imitated Laurel. "The Skipper" - Alan Hale Jr. - imitated Hardy. Johnny Carson often referenced Laurel & Hardy on his Tonight Show. I love how L & H were constantly intimidated and dominated by their angry "Karen" wives and bent over backward to please and appease them.

    Jimmy and Hank are two of my favorite actors. I admire any actor who is versatile enough to convincingly play comedic as well as dramatic roles, and it looks like those two did a great job in Cheyenne Social Club. Given that the Western also features Shirley Jones and her bevy of beauties, I think I'll add that one of my seek and watch list.

    I love Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau and Dyan Cannon, but don't like old guy buddy films, especially if the old guys are curmudgeonly, which they usually are. I'd rather watch films that show all of these actors and actresses in their prime.

    I like and appreciate how you let us know the death dates of all the actors in these buddy pairs and tell us how the surviving member reacted to the death of his screen partner.

    Thank you, dear friend BB, and enjoy the rest of your week!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sick Van Dyke became friends with Stan Laurel who taught him some things. The Skipper did imitate Hardy. You will love The Cheyenne Social Club..how could you not. This is actually one film that the characters are not curmudgeons. Jack Lemmon is one who thinks he needs to act his age but everyone is having a great time..it is not grumpy aold Men

      Delete
  3. I haven't seen any of these. I really like Jack Lemmon though so there's a huge chance I'll watch Out of Sea.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It’s a fun film but Cheyenne is also fun

      Delete
  4. I haven't seen any of your picks this week, but Out to Sea sounds familiar, like I may have seen parts of it before.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe you have....you will have to watch it to make sure😀

      Delete
  5. Didn't see any of your picks but they as usual sound pretty good! Yuck with being without air conditioning. I would have checked into a hotel LOL! We had to replace our whole unit this past winter. Can you imagine life without it? But people survived (how I have no idea LOL).

    betty

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are many who still don’t have A/C and I have no idea. You would like Out To Sea

      Delete
  6. Great theme within the theme!!

    Of the three pairs my favorite twosome is Hank & Jimmy, they only made three films proper together though they both appeared in How the West Was Won but shared no scenes, even if they are the ones who would least be considered a team. That lifelong intimacy they shared translates through the lens. Cheyenne is a cute, albeit minor film for the pair.

    I've always loved Jack Lemmon but it took years for me to warm to Walter Matthau. After seeing many more of his films over the years and seeing he was much more versatile than his pairings with Jack required raised my appreciation. Of their films together The Grass Harp is my favorite but they don't have much interaction in it. Of those were they were an actual team I'd go with The Fortune Cookie.

    I can't say I'm an ardent Laurel and Hardy fan (though I did pick one of their films) but they absolutely had a vibe together that worked uniquely for them. As far as their films together I'll always have a soft spot for Babes in Toyland.

    I used a similar theme within the theme to yours with three pairs of men who made a series of films together. But only Laurel and Hardy shared a tight offscreen bond. Hope & Crosby were professional friends but apparently didn't social much off-screen. Wilder & Pryor were too radically different to be close but respected each other professionally.

    Stan Laurel & Oliver Hardy-Brought together by the happenstance of both being employed at the Hal Roach studios they discovered they were a perfect fit. Starting in 1921 until their retirement from films in 1951 they appeared in 106 films, shorts and special subjects.

    The Bohemian Girl (1936)-Stan and Ollie travel with a band of 18th-century Gypsies holding a nobleman's daughter. Bumbling all the way they still manage to rescue the girl in the final reel. Thelma Todd’s final film, released several months after her murder.

    Bing Crosby & Bob Hope-Hugely successful separately Bob & Bing were paired in The Road to Singapore-a script originally intended for George Burns & Gracie Allen-along with Dorothy Lamour (who would appear in all the subsequent films in the series) as a couple of feckless roving buddies and hit comic gold for seven Road pictures between 1940 and 1962.

    The Road to Morocco (1942)-Starving vagabond Jeff (Bing) sells best friend Orville (Bob) into slavery in a Moroccan marketplace to buy food. Seized by a guilty conscience, Jeff discovers that Orville is now engaged to the gorgeous Princess Shalmar (Dorothy). Astrologers have told the Princess that her first husband will die violently, leaving her free to marry her beloved Sheik Mullay Kasim (Anthony Quinn). But when the princess falls for Jeff, things get complicated.


    Gene Wilder & Richard Pryor-When he received the script for Silver Streak Gene Wilder told the producers that only one actor could play the part opposite him-Richard Pryor. They agreed and a comedy team was born making in total four films as mismatched buddies.

    Silver Streak (1976)-While on a cross-country train ride, overworked book editor George Caldwell (Gene) begins a spur of the moment romance with the mysterious Hilly Burns (Jill Clayburgh). Their interlude interrupted when he witnesses a murder and is then accused. The true perpetrators kidnap Hilly and throw Caldwell from the moving train. Desperate, Caldwell teams up with car thief Grover Muldoon (Richard), and together they must save Hilly while avoiding the police. Many complications and hilarity ensue.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I pick Laurel & Hardy because they had such a strong friendship plus my dad loved them. I still have to see Babes in Toyland which I heard and read is considered their best. Glad you said Thelma was murdered. When I was younger they only speculated she was murdered and some of my books said suicide. I always thought she was murdered just from what I read about her and how she was found. I almost went with. Hope and Crosby film but they were not great friends off camera even though they did some business stuff together. Love Silver Streak and those 2 had such a great camaraderie on screen that I was sad to find out they were not really friends off screen.

      Delete
  7. Worst possible time to lose your A/C! That must have been brutal, Birgit. So glad it's fixed again!

    I don't remember the Laurel & Hardy film, but it sounds like fun. The other two are in my DVD library. Love them both! Great theme, using real-life buddies. How about Bob Hope and Bing Crosby? They did all those "Road To..." movies together. Or, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, before the rift?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank God I got my AC working again because it has been brutal. Glad to know you have the last 2 in your DVD collection , just like I do. I thought of the Road pictures but they were not great friends off camera sad to say even though they did some business ventures together. I always thought they were friends and remember the news saying Hope collapsed when he heard Crosby died but I guess it was not the case. Martin & Lewis were friends at first but truly fell out, I think egos took over

      Delete
  8. The thought of our A/C going out is something I've been thinking. We don't use ours continuously, but it's the same unit that we've had since the house was built in 1997. It's held up so far, thank goodness, but I'm sure eventually it will go kaput. Not looking forward to that expense.

    I've enjoyed Laurel and Hardy since I was a kid and they are a good pick. I may have seen the other two, but your assessment about the actors is a good one.

    Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight popped into my mind first thing with the touching Midnight Cowboy. Then Hope and Crosby came to mind. I grew up watching the "Road" pictures and always liked them--maybe not as much now as when I was a kid, but they worked well together.

    Would the Marx Bros. count? They were a contentious lot and I never got much sense of a loving bond, but they were together in a lot of films.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great choice on Midnight Cowboy. I love the Road pictures but I wanted to stick with real life friends and they were not actually friends off screen. They did a couple of business ventures but that’s it. The Marx Bros I would count even though they were brothers because they were great on screen and loved each other off screen too. Yeah, I’m waiting for my furnace to go one day

      Delete
  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Been there done that on the AC going out during summer season. Ack.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I like your theme. We most often hear about costars who hate each other. I like hearing about costars who were great friends.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I thought it was a good way to go because too many times we Centre on the negative

      Delete
  12. Out to Sea is an amazing film. Lemmon and Matthau just brought magic and it was such a fun film to watch. I loved seeing Donald O'Connor and him dancing with Elaine Stricht was great. It's one of those movies where it has heart and characters you care about and laugh with.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love this film for everything you said and wished I would have seen more dancing

      Delete
  13. I don't know any of these. But Walter Matthau and Jack Lemon are such a good team. I am going to check out this film. Hope you're having a good July.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You will love this because it is romantic and they are all over the age of 25. I am having a good July despite the cost of my AC

      Delete
  14. Sorry about your AC. I can't live without mine. I even have an extra window unit in my office because of all the hot electronics and windows all the way around the room.

    I've not herd of any of these, but I enjoyed the synopses. I also appreciated your comments about each of the main characters'
    deaths.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I never had air until I moved into my home and I will never be without one. I suffered too long without one. I’m glad you like my synopsis

      Delete
  15. Hi Birgit - sorry about your aircon ... an essential with your heat. Love Laurel and Hardy ... but haven't seen the other two - and I can see you've got some great suggestions from your readers. Stay safe - Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank goodness my AC was up and running by Monday afternoon. There are some great suggestions here

      Delete
  16. First movie to pop into my head: The Muppet Movie, the original in 1979.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is a brilliant choice! I love it.

      Delete
    2. I'm pretty sure I saw Out to Sea in the theater back the other day. I don't know your other two at all.

      Delete
  17. I probably have seen the Laurel and Hardy, the sort of thing that used to go out on Sunday afternoon on the TV here, but definitely not the other two. Laurel first appeared on stage here in Glasgow as you probably know already (not least because I’ve probably already told you)!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I knew that he started there in Glasgow and wonder if there is a statue of him anywhere or a small museum?

      Delete
  18. Walter Matthau, hubba, hubba. Seriously. His crankiness gave him that sexy edge. Ha, just like the Husband. I wandered. I like Matthau and Lemon in The Front Page which makes me think it's time for a marathon of their work. You always give me good ideas for our movie watching, Birgit. Thank you. :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now that is a great marathon film weekend

      Delete
  19. Birgit,

    Walter Matthau and Jack Lemon were so good together. 'Out to Sea' is a nice flick but I like the dueling comedians best in their 'Grumpy Old Men' films. :)

    Sorry for the late return visit, my dear. It's just been one of those weeks. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. First, don’t apologize as I have been more than tardy in reading your great blog. Yeah, the Grumpy movies are excellent

      Delete
  20. BIRGIT ~

    Brilliant idea picking Laurel & Hardy! I have *always* loved them. I think my favorite of their movies might be 'THE FLYING DUECES'. I can't even think about the very ending of that movie without laughing!! My next favorite L&H movie could be 'WAY OUT WEST'. That dance routine they did...

    My very favorite male buddy movie is probably 'MONTE WALSH' (1970) with Lee Marvin & Jack Palance - it's also my very favorite Western movie.

    Another one that comes to mind is 'PLANES, TRAINS & AUTOMOBILES'. John Candy and Steve Martin wind up as buddies, but it's one helluva bumpy (and funny) ride getting to that point.

    And thinking outside-the-box a little bit, I'm gonna also mention 'THE BLACK STALLION'. (Who said one of the male buddies couldn't be a horse?)

    ~ D-FensDogG
    STMcC Presents BATTLE OF THE BANDS

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was so young seeing the Laurel & Hardy films but I think I saw the 2 you mention. I have to revisit them. I have not seen Monte Walsh and it sounds excellent plus I like both actors. I love Plane, Trains and miss the great John Candy to this day. Black Stallion is an excellent pick since many good cowboy films often would think of their horse as their best buddy.

      Delete
    2. Uhm... 'THE BLACK STALLION' (1979) is not a Western and contains no cowboys. It does, however, contain Mickey Rooney, in what is quite possibly his greatest film performance ever!

      It's about a boy and a horse. He saves the horse's life; and then the horse saves the boy's life. And then they kick ass in a legendary thoroughbred horse race, after former jockey, Mickey Rooney, teaches the kid everything he knows.

      However, if you're looking for a Western in which a cowboy and his horse are buddies, check out 'LONELY ARE THE BRAVE' (1962), starring Kirk Douglas and his horse, 'Whiskey'.

      ~ D-FensDogG
      'FERRET-FACED FASCIST FRIENDS'

      Delete
  21. Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau sure were a great team. Lethal Weapon would be my pick.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Matthau and Lemmon were in so many good buddy movies: "The Odd Couple" and "Grumpy Old Men" come immediately to mind.

    A movie I thought was particularly funny (which should tell you what you've probably suspected anyway) is "Dumb And Dumber." The idea of pairing Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels was inspired, and I think Daniels was the funnier of the two.

    "A Hard Day's Night" is my all-time favorite movie, and John, Paul, George and Ringo were natural comedians. Their interactions with each other, with Paul's grandfather, and with their people and surroundings are brilliant. "Help!" wasn't quite as good, but even so their dealings with each other were fantastic.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love Lemmon and Matthau and have even watched them on talk shows together. I can’t stand Dumb & Dumber, rare for me but I couldn’t stand that film...worse is Ace Ventura. Love that you picked Hard Day’s Night which is an excellent pick..love that grandfather

      Delete
  23. Cheyenne Social Club was a hoot wasn't it. And I loved Fonda and Stewart together. Nice to find out they were friends. Except religion, there's nothing more divisive than politics.
    Stay safe. Be healthy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love these 2 and they were fine with religion but what almost had them come to blows was politics! Fonda was a Democrat and Stewart a Republican(although he would not have been in favour of the moron in the office now from everything I have read about the man). They almost had their friendship destroyed over politics so they agreed never to talk about politics again and they stuck to that. Funny, Peter Fonda remembered his dad and Jimmy used to work on making model airplanes or something like that and they just never spoke except to ask for glue or a part. He said they spent hours and just never spoke...he thought that was true friendship.

      Delete
  24. The first movie that came to mind for me was "Sideways," a movie about two buddies who decide to tour several California wineries before one of them is supposed to get married. Well worth seeing if you have not done so.

    Then I thought of those cop-buddy movies featuring Mel Gibson and Danny Glover... Lethal Weapon. The first one remains the best, in my opinion. All the follow-ups were sort of parodies of the original.

    My third? Gotta' go with Kevin Costner and Tim Robbins in Bull Durham, proof that often guys become "buddies" due to circumstance more than by choice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I so glad to see you here! I would have fallen over if you didn’t choose Sideways which I have seen and I own. I almost chose it but I wanted to go with a theme within a theme. Bull Durham is a good movie and I wonder if anyone will choose this or Sideways. Lethal Weapon is good but I do like the othersas well especially with Joe Pesci

      Delete
  25. OMGosh, Matthau and Lemmon. They really played off each other didn't they. They were just purrfect together.

    ReplyDelete