Double Whoopee (1929)

Genres - Comedy  |   Sub-Genres - Slapstick  |   Release Date - May 18, 1929 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 20 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Janiss Garza

A hotel is gearing up to welcome its prestigious new guest, a European Prince (Captain John Peters). But before he appears, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy walk in. After much confusion, it is discovered that the two are not the Prince and his Prime Minister, but are the hotel's new doorman and footman. The real Prince grows ever more furious as he falls into the elevator shaft numerous times, always because of either Stan or Ollie. Finally the boys take their positions outside the hotel, where they irritate a taxi driver (Charlie Hall) and a policeman (Tiny Sanford). Stan, Ollie, and the cabbie proceed to destroy each other's uniforms, until the cabbie accidentally grabs the policeman's jacket. The cabbie takes off, and another taxi appears. A sexy blonde (Jean Harlow) emerges and is personally escorted by Ollie. What he doesn't know is that Stan shut the cab's door on her dress and it has ripped right off. Finally, he sees what has happened, and, horrified, he removes Stan's coat to cover up the young lady. The boys start bickering, and soon the whole lobby is in an uproar. The Prince comes in and gets in the way of a flying cake. Nearly rabid with anger, he swears to report this indignity to the King and Queen -- then falls into the elevator shaft once again. This two-reel silent is best remembered for the scene in which Jean Harlow's dress is caught in the taxi cab door. Harlow doesn't appear in a later Laurel and Hardy film, Beau Hunks, but a still photo of her from Double Whoopie does, and she's identified there as "Jeannie-Weenie," Ollie's faithless girlfriend. And if the Prince in Double Whoopie looks quite a bit like Erich von Stroheim, he should -- the actor who played the part was von Stroheim's stand-in. Double Whoopee was re-released in 1969 in a "talkie" version dubbed by new actors.



guest, hotel, mistaken-identity, misunderstanding, prince