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Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops (1955)

Approved | | Comedy | 21 February 1955 (Sweden)
Harry and Willie buy the Edison Movie Studio in the year 1912 from Joseph Gorman, a confidence man. They follow Gorman to Hollywood where, as stunt men, they find him directing movies as Sergei Trumanoff and stealing the studio payroll.

Director:

Charles Lamont

Writers:

John Grant, Lee Loeb (story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bud Abbott ... Harry 'Slim' Pierce
Lou Costello ... Willie 'Tubby' Piper
Fred Clark ... Joseph Gorman - aka Sergei Toumanoff
Lynn Bari ... Leota Van Cleef
Maxie Rosenbloom ... Hinds
Harold Goodwin ... Cameraman (as Herold Goodwin)
Roscoe Ates ... Wagon Driver
Mack Sennett ... Mack Sennett
Heinie Conklin ... Studio Guard
Hank Mann ... Prop Man
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Doris Barton Doris Barton ... Mack Sennett Bathing Beauty
Margaret Eubank Margaret Eubank ... Mack Sennett Bathing Beauty
Peggy Gordon Peggy Gordon ... Mack Sennett Bathing Beauty
Barbara Jones Barbara Jones ... Mack Sennett Bathing Beauty
Dorothy Martinson Dorothy Martinson ... Mack Sennett Bathing Beauty
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Storyline

Harry and Willie buy the Edison Movie Studio in the year 1912 from Joseph Gorman, a confidence man. They follow Gorman to Hollywood where, as stunt men, they find him directing movies as Sergei Trumanoff and stealing the studio payroll.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When every face wore a custard pie, and vamps broke hearts with a winking eye! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 February 1955 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Abbott and Costello in the Stunt Men See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$743,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although it was photographed in the 1.33:1 academy ratio, the film was meant to be projected in a matted 1.85:1 widescreen ratio. As of 2019, it remains available on TV and home video only in academy ratio, with excess picture information on the top and bottom of the screen. See more »

Goofs

The LA cops introduce themselves to Toumanoff as being from "Los-Zangeles". This pronunciation was not officially adopted until 1934. The cops in 1914 would have more likely announced themselves as being from "Lo-Sang-ga-lus". See more »

Quotes

Harry 'Slim' Pierce: Willie, do you realize the person that puts money in this moving picture business is going to make a fortune?
Willie 'Tubby' Piper: Gimme that money.
Harry 'Slim' Pierce: Now...
Willie 'Tubby' Piper: I gotta put that in the bank like my aunt told me to do.
Harry 'Slim' Pierce: Willie, listen to this. See it right here? Do you want to become rich? If so, invest in this new entertainment medium, Motion Pictures. $5,000 cash buys a fully equipped studio. Willie, opportunity is knocking at your door!
Willie 'Tubby' Piper: Tell 'em I'm not home. I went to the bank.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Rockford Files: The Attractive Nuisance (1978) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Nice Cartoon
5 September 2008 | by frankebeSee all my reviews

I've seen 28 A&C movies, and I have to say that this comedy team is consistently enjoyable. The only movie that's no good is their last ("Dance w/Me, Henry"); all the others range from fall-over hilarious to innocently droll. In a couple of films Costello seems distracted and campy, but in most he manages to be sympathetic, as he is in this one.

I have especially enjoyed sorting through their later "lesser" movies, like "…Go to Mars" and "…Go to Alaska", which I found quite entertaining, and I am entertained by this movie for most of the same reasons: Costello's cherubic character seems more warm and ingratiating as the movies go along. To me, the more relaxed timing in their acting and partnership makes them more engaging. Instead of so much verbal patter, the later movies emphasize character, and may actually be funnier and more appealing to anyone speaking English as a foreign language (Cantinflas movies, with their long stretches of static action, are miserably boring to watch if you don't know Spanish).

In "…Keystone Cops", I found myself once again watching a cartoon-like feature-length movie that just happened to have, miraculously, Abbott and Costello as main characters. How do you go wrong with that, especially if you have an 8-year-old mind in a 56-year-old body? Nope, there are none of the classic verbal routines here, but how many of those can you watch over and over again? A&C are plenty amusing as protagonists—a classic duo like Laurel and Hardy, and although they did not make me roll with laughter, the movie certainly kept me smiling with its convivial mood and enjoyable cast.

The movie has good production values, with lots of real out-of-doors shots, steam engines, single prop airplanes, and lots and lots of stunts. It is more of an "action film" than some of their other films; in fact, it's worth watching just to see the stunt men, who are really fabulous. Generally I am offended when one of these films stops being an A&C movie and becomes a stunt-man movie (as Buster Keaton famously said, "Stunt men aren't funny", meaning they don't convey character). But here, the director sets up the stunts so clearly (sometimes frightening, like the train-in-the-tunnel), that they come across as very funny events. The actors playing the Keystone Cops are stupendous. I had to stop-motion parts of the final chase because I couldn't believe what they were doing.

The film has an excellent final joke.

By the way, has anyone else noticed that in some movies, like this one, the lip sync is way off during some of the long shots?


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