Studio Stoops (1950)

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Although this Shemp Howard-era Three Stooges short is rather plot-heavy, it has some particularly funny gags. The boys are termite exterminators who are mistaken for publicity flacks while they're spraying offices at the B.O. movie studio. When the studio head promises them a big bonus if they think up a good stunt for his newest star, Dolly Duval (Christine McIntyre), they suggest that she suddenly disappear. But it's an extremely overused scam -- neither the police captain (Vernon Dent) nor the newspaper reporter believe it. A gang of crooks, however, really do kidnap Dolly and demand ransom. The Stooges arrive at the hotel with money and guns acquired from the prop room. This becomes all-too apparent when they try to shoot the thugs, and Larry's gun shoots out a "bang!" flag, and Moe's turns out to be a water pistol. In the hallway, however, Shemp manages to knock one crook unconscious. While Moe and Larry are being tied up, Shemp finds Dolly in a garment bag in the closet and changes places with her. She frees the Stooges, and Larry acosts the police captain, who is sitting down for a card game with some associates. He pelts the the card players with food to get their attention and they chase after him as he heads for the crooks. Shemp, meanwhile, has wandered out onto the ledge in the garment bag but when he cuts his way out, he panics and falls. While he hangs by a phone from a tenth floor window, Moe and Dolly throw him a rope. The crooks attack and their leader gets his foot tangled in the rope. Dolly and Moe knock out the other two. The police captain and his men arrive and Moe and Larry try to pull Shemp up. But he stops on a balcony where a young woman is sunbathing and the sudden slack sends his pals flying into the bathtub. With nothing better to do, they decide to start soaping up, even though Larry complains that "It isn't Saturday night."