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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful.
Surprisingly hilarious and a wonderful tribute.
The Three Stooges (the original show) is, without a doubt, an absolute timeless classic. They were unique, and spawned many imitators and trends. While a cynic might say that their show lacked variation, I'd say quite the opposite. The characters used their innocent personalities and absolute mastery in physical comedy to do interesting commentary on world issues, and while they specialized in slapstick not only they were the kings of it, they used it as a vehicle to tell some stories that stand the test of time.
While due to several circumstances the third Stooge was changed several times, leaving only Larry and Moe constant, the most popular iteration of the group is the one with Curly as the third guy (followed by Shemp), and this is the one presented in this film by the Farrelly Brothers, clearly big fans of the show. And despite its lukewarm reception, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this film. I honestly regret not having seen it in theaters. This has to be evidence of how a bad trailer can be negative for a film's reception, since the problem is clearly not the film's quality, but the trailers where more than a bit underwhelming. I suppose they wanted to leave all the funnier bits hidden, but this didn't work well for the movie's box office (though, apparently, a sequel is in the works with the same cast, so we might be lucky).
But I digress, the movie has a story, and it's a very generic/derivative one. The Stooges have to raise money to save an orphanage, and they end up getting tied into a woman's (Sofia Vergara) attempt to assassinate her husband to acquire his fortune. But here's the thing: the story is not important, and the directors know it. They deliberately picked a familiar story because they knew it was just a means to an end, which was to show the Stooges in action. And they succeeded inmensely. The film is funny through and through. It's not just about the pratfalls, of course, but there's no part of the film that unnecessarily slogs for drama. This is a very well-crafted comedy, and it's enjoyable in its entirety.
The movie starts with the Stooges in their childhood, where they live through their adulthood until they're forced to leave because the place is about to close. I must point out this is a brilliant excuse to showcase the Stooges' innocence. They live completely disconnected from the outside world, so when they arrive in the city, they behave just like the original Stooges would. It's the best way to portray them as they used to be without resorting to time travel. Once in the city, they proceed to get into shenanigans that get them and almost everyone they cross paths with in trouble and lots of fantastic slapstick.
The obvious best part of the movie is the three main actors. Sean Hayes (Larry), Will Sasso (Curly) and Chris Diamantopoulos (Moe) are absolutely brilliant as the Three Stooges. They nail, NAIL the original actors looks, mannerisms and slapstick abilities. They do it so well you'd swear they're the original actors reincarnated. At the start of the movie, the characters are represented by child actors, and they do and incredibly good job of it too. Obviously, the directors did a great job in finding and directing the cast in order to offer a proper tribute to the original series, and they did it so well that if you watch this movie in a monochrome screen you'd swear it was a restored old episode. The film is presented as three interconected episodes with classic title cards, which is an appropiate treat.
I haven't watched the extras yet (I soon will), but the quality of the video and audio is impressive in the Blu Ray. The only bad thing I can say about it right now is that it doesn't allow you to go to the main menu right away when you put the disc, you have to skip all the previews one by one. I never understood that annoying design choice, but it's there. Still, if you get a chance to watch this movie, do it. It's worth your time.
199 of 212 people found the following review helpful.
Amazon's "Editorial Review" for this film made me do this
Amazon notified me via email that the new Farrelly Brothers' "The Three Stooges" was ready to be pre-ordered, so I linked over to do so--I hadn't had that much fun in a movie theater in a long time, and couldn't wait to re-visit the film at home along with the usual bounty of DVD extras the Farrellys usually provide (I hope). Imagine my shock when I read the supposedly authoritative "Amazon.com Editorial Review" posted at the film's page with the reviewer saying it was the Farrellys' "weakest effort to date" and "terminally unfunny." Look, I'm smart enough to know one review is just one person's opinion, and that comedy is very personal and a heckuva lot harder to pull off than drama (what's funny to one person is often simply irritating or annoying to another), but when the review is posted on a film's page as the authoritative last word, I have to put my two-cents in. Here's my short review: I either smiled, chuckled, or laughed out loud through the ENTIRE running time of this film, and that very rarely happens for me, hence my 5-star rating. Most comedies, even the best, have slow spots you wait out until the next laugh--it's often the natural flow of a film to have peaks and valleys, but this film had none for me--it was all peaks. Every scene had something for me to at least smile at, whether it was the Stooges themselves, Jane Lynch as a Mother Superior (!), Larry David as a cranky nun (!), Lin Shaye showing up out of the blue in a small role (I love her), Sofia Vergara gamely sparring with the guys, or small touches, surprises, and sight gags that flew by so fast you knew you'd be laughing all over again when you saw it a second time (if we'd had the time we would've gladly stayed to watch it a second time the day we saw it--the friend I saw it with had as much fun watching it as I did). The three leads were perfectly cast, and if you know the Stooges, you'll appreciate even more how perfect they are. It's uncanny how close they are to the originals, and the entire production feels like a respectful and loving homage to them. There is no doubt in my mind the film will spark even more appreciation and discovery of the original Stooges and their huge body of work, and that's exactly what you hope for: that the new film not only succeeds on its own but sparks viewers' interest, appreciation, and respect for the originals.
0 of 0 people found the following review helpful. See all 756 customer reviews...
This was very well done.
As an old Three Stooges fan ( I grew up watching them), I can truthfully tell you that this was a great movie. MANY of the stunts they pulled were hilarious. My wife and I laughed so hard we were gasping for breath in some scenes. Note, however, you must be familiar with the original stooges to appreciated how well this movie was done. It is an "all's well that end's well" somewhat politically correct movie though. The Three Stooges were never shackled by political correctness in their day. Everyone was a victim of their lunacy. The taint of political correctness and the use of the rare "risky" joke are my only displeasure with this rendition. The Stooges NEVER used cheap suggestive jokes!!! If you can overlook that you will laugh your head off.