The Three Stooges Meet Hercules

USA - 1962

Movie Review By Andrea Chase

Here's something you can say about The Three Stooges without fear of contradiction: They'll never let you down. They're as consistent as a fast-food burger and, in entertainment terms, just as nutritious. The Stooges will never challenge you intellectually; they will never shift your paradigm.

But the upside to the guys is that, unlike more than a few Hollywood blockbusters, with a Stooges flick, you know what you're getting into. As you settle into your seat and the lights go down, you can be sure that what's coming up is supposed to be silly. Beyond silly. Über silly, punctuated with the requisite eye-poking, tandem face slapping, and things done with desserts that will amply demonstrate the aerodynamic possibilities of puff pastry.

The fine folks at the fabulous Roxie Theater, right here in the equally fabulous city of San Francisco, are doing their bit to fight the summer doldrums by reviving one of the boys' later efforts, 1961's "The Three Stooges Meet Hercules." Any back-handed salute to another summer flick is purely intentional.

This opus presents Moe, Larry and Curley Joe working in a drugstore and wreaking (what else?) havoc with both the pharmacy AND the soda fountain. They befriend the clean-cut but befuddled inventor next-door and before you can say gadzooks, the stooges accidentally transport themselves, the hapless inventor and his cute as a button girlfriend, from Ithaca, New York, to Ithaca, ancient Greece. There they taunt a non-animated Hercules, develop a new form of aerobic workout, and discover that girls in 900 B.C.E wear beehive hairdos just like the ones sported by happenin' gals in the 1960s.

You were expecting maybe the Illiad?

"The Three Stooges Meet Hercules" is one of those films about which the title says it all. Which is to say, for those who understand the Stooges, no explanation is necessary. For those who don't, no explanation is possible.

© 1997 • Andrea Chase • Air Date: 7/23/97

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