DVD Review: The Three Stooges

The Three Stooges DVDSTUDIO: Fox | DIRECTOR: Bobby Farrelly and Peter Farrelly | CAST: Sean Hayes, Chris Diamantopoulos, Will Sasso, Jane Lynch, Sofia Vergara, Larry David, Jennifer Hudson
BLU-RAY & DVD RELEASE DATE: 7/17/2012 | PRICE: DVD $29.98, Blu-ray $39.99
BONUSES: deleted/extended scenes, featurettes, screen test, more
SPECS: PG | 92 min. | Comedy | 1.85:1 widescreen | Dolby Digital 5.1/DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 | English, Spanish and French subtitles

RATINGS (out of 5 dishes): Movie  | Audio  | Video  | Overall

 

What seemed like a really bad idea from the get-go—resurrecting America’s most revered comedy trio for the big screen in The Three Stooges —turns out a lot better than anyone would have suspected in the Farrelly Brothers (Hall Pass) ode to the original beloved cinematic numbskulls.

The Three Stooges movie scene

The boys have a run-in with swimming nun Kate Upton in The Three Stooges.

There’s lots to like in the PG-rated shenanigans of Moe, Larry and Curly, from expert portrayals by Chris Diamantopolous (TV’s The Kennedys)  Sean Hates (TV’s Will and Grace) and Will Sasso, respectively, to the sharp and silly conception of sight gags to a surprisingly poignant underbelly that clicks with the silly screen slapstick.

The Three Stooges is divided into three different segments featuring “the Boys” in contemporary situations that allow them to show how violently funny they can be when handled properly. First, wee them as tykes being raised at an orphanage where nuns are played by Jane Lynch (Paul) and Larry David (TV’s Curb Your Enthusiasm). (Later on, another num is revealingly portrayed by Sports Illustrated swimsuit model Kate Upton. Then, the Stooges are pulled into a murder plot by femme fatale Sofia Vergara (New Year’s Eve). And, finally, the trio of lame brains must raise money to save their faltering orphanage.

Fans of the classic Columbia Stooges shorts will recognize the efforts of the Farrellys and company to recapture the sights, sounds and laughs of the comedy act. At the same time, a new generation of potential Stoogeaholics can appreciate the superior work by the three leads and the filmmakers and, perhaps, delve into the originals to see what made them the ultimate wise guys.

The discs’ healthy collection of bonus features includes a making-of featurette, a set of deleted and extended scenes, featurettes on the film’s casting and sound effects and a look at the history of the original Three Stooges who appeared in some 200 shorts in the 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s.

Surprisingly, there’s no gag reel included, but the movie itself provides more than enough laughs—nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.

 

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About Irv

Irv Slifkin has been reviewing movies since before he got kicked off of his high school radio station for panning The Towering Inferno in 1974. He has written the books VideoHound’s Groovy Movies: Far-Out Films of the Psychedelic Era and Filmadelphia: A Celebration of a City’s Movies, and has contributed film reportage and reviews to such outlets as Entertainment Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter, Video Business magazine and National Public Radio.