Birthday Blues (1932)

Genres - Comedy  |   Sub-Genres - Family-Oriented Comedy  |   Run Time - 22 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Hal Erickson

A superb combination of belly laughs and pathos, the "Our Gang" comedy "Birthday Blues" was originally released on November 12, 1932. When their pennypinching father (Hooper Atchley) refuses to buy a birthday gift for their long-suffering mother (Lillian Rich), brothers Dickie Moore and Spanky McFarland decide to purchase Mom a gift on their own. Unfortunately, the "late 1922 model" dress they've selected is way beyond their price range (a daunting $1.98); thus, acting upon the advice of their pal Matthew "Stymie" Beard, Dickie and Spanky decide to bake a cake with hidden prizes, then auction off the cake at ten cents a slice. This is the film in which the kids' oversized cake --- a truly frightening creation --- emits a low "woooooo-owww" sound as it cools off in the oven. It is also the film in which, responding to Spanky's suggestion that they buy their mom a shotgun, Dickie moans "Aw, what would she do with a gun?" --- whereupon Spanky replies "Shoot Papa!!!!"