Zack & Nick's Culture Cast

Digesting the lowest rung of pop culture so you don't have to!

I Saw The Three Stooges

Note: Last week, Nick did a fantastic write-up on The Three Stooges right here on this very website! Check it out here.

I did not expect to go see The Three Stooges this weekend. I wasn’t really sure if I was going to go see it at all. But I had a coupon for a free popcorn and soda, and tickets were only $4, so I decided to pack up my gear and venture out to the theaters for a viewing. I’m glad I did, because the Farrelly brothers’ The Three Stooges was a ton of fun, and a pretty decent film-going experience over all. One of the most noticeable aspects of the new film is the level of respect and honor the Farrelly’s brought to this movie. There are plenty of homages to the past shorts for one. From the way the stooges snore in concert with one another, to the bang-zoom-pow sound effects, to the distinct mannerisms of the titular characters, the film is pretty clearly in many ways a love letter to the vaudevillian act of the original three.

The film begins at an orphanage, documenting the trials and tribulations of the children stooges. Moe is eventually adopted by a rich couple, but does not want to leave without his friends, so another boy is adopted in his stead. The trio grows up as a part of the orphanage, “working” odd jobs for the Sisters and “helping” with the younger children and such. When the orphanage is threatened with foreclosure, the stooges venture off into the world to raise enough money to keep their home open and running and save the children and the Sisters, who they see as friends, mother figures, and even primary caretakers.

The casting obviously helps out a ton here. Chris Diamontopolous, best known for his role on the action television program 24, and Will Sasso, best known for his work on Fox’s Mad TV, are perfectly cast as Moe and Curly respectively. I did not expect to like Diamontopolous’ Moe all that much because he’s such an unknown actor to me, but I ended up loving his work. He got Moe’s mannerisms and look down pat, from being the ostensible leader, to the fishbowl haircut, to the “C’mere you chowdahead!” sayings and accent. Sasso is just perfect as Curly; honestly casting here gets an A+. Sasso’s Curly is the film’s secret weapon. The original Curly, one of the most  beloved but also simultaneously overlooked and underrated comic geniuses in American cinema history, would no doubt approve of Sasso’s impressions. Everything from the “Woo! Woo!” to the dogbarking to the “Soitenly!” are present, and all are welcomed and lovable. Sean Hayes is the weak link here, but his Larry Fine is passable. He just doesn’t get the love that Moe and Curly do in the film.

The supporting cast ranges from ok to a mixed bag. I personally found Larry David’s Sister Mary to be hilarious (and having him in drag is another homage to the original shorts). Jane Lynch is also fine as the Mother Superior, but she gets little screen time (as does a perfectly fine Jennifer Hudson, who should really be getting more work as she is beautiful and talented as they come). Sofia Vergera is more of a liability, however; her acting is ok, but her character is severely under-developed. I’m sure there was a ton of internet bitching about the cast of Jersey Shore being involved, but honestly their presence does not distract from the film at all, and is even quite funny in the short bits they’re on-screen. It also helps that it makes good sense why they’re even in the film.

The film is not without its structural weaknesses however. I like how the film is divided up into chapters, but there’s really only a few of them and they seem to be somewhat randomly placed. I also didn’t particularly care for the parts in the beginning where the stooges were still children, and because of this I felt they dragged on just a bit. Really, any part of the film featuring primarily child actors had the potential to be a bit cringe-worthy, but because this is a movie primarily made for kids (see: the PG rating), I’m willing to be somewhat forgiving of that. The ending also comes off as a bit weird and disjointed for reasons I can’t really put my finger on.

The Three Stooges is a pretty light-and-breezy fun time, and I’d totally be up for a re-viewing at home. It’s something I’d like to sit down and watch side-by-side with some of the old shorts just to find more homages and similarities. I had a pretty fun time watching this film and I recommend it to any Stooge fan out there. It’s a respectful adaptation of a true American comedy classic series.

-Z-

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58 responses to “I Saw The Three Stooges

  1. Mikalee Byerman April 16, 2012 at 12:51 pm

    Great review. I was considering taking my kids to see it, but I wondered…a.) is it appropriate; and b.) could they relate to it?

    Sounds like the answers may be yes and yes.

    🙂

    • CultureCast-Z April 16, 2012 at 3:57 pm

      Mikalee-

      I think it is appropriate for children as long as they understand the violence is cartoony and fake. It is rated PG so you don’t have to worry about drug use, profanity, etc either. Most people brought their kids with them to see it and the kids seemed to have a good time.

    • Azure James April 17, 2012 at 8:22 am

      I’m happy they were respectful to the original series. Too many remakes just walk over the originals nowadays.
      Good job!
      Azure James

  2. xuantian April 16, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    Love the film. Thanks for sharing:)

  3. aFrankAngle April 16, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    I have many fond memories of the original Stooges, thus I’m not sure if I want an updated version to mess with my memories.

  4. The Simple Life of a Country Man's Wife April 16, 2012 at 1:10 pm

    interesting and well-worded review — thank you

  5. Mom Meets Blog April 16, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    My 11 year old son begged me to take him to see this (he has seen some original Stooges on TV). He was absolutely howling through the whole movie and gave it six stars. I must admit it was hilarious watching him get such a kick out of it; I had a few laughs myself, and managed to stay awake – this coming from a mom is a ringing endorsement. Once it hits cable/Netflix it will be all Stooges, all the the time! Congrats on the FP!

  6. Connie T April 16, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    I will rent it when the DVD comes out, thanks for the review.

  7. The Hook April 16, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    “The Three Stooges is a pretty light-and-breezy fun time,”
    That sounds great! We need to escape the “same old, same old…. sometimes!

  8. Thom April 16, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    My brother, Jackie Cooper, is a movie critic in Perry, GA. I specifically asked him this morning what he thought of this 3 Stooges movie, and he said they made him laugh. He had just told me recently that he had never been a 3 Stooges admirer so I expected negative comments from him. Instead I received the laughter comment rather than negatives, which will certainly encourage me to see it when it comes out on DVD.

  9. Dan Del Ferraro April 16, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Cool, good to know. I was worried about going to see it being a die-hard Stooges fan, but it’s all good now. 🙂

  10. Cleverreality April 16, 2012 at 2:35 pm

    I love that this movie is trying so hard to be a recreation versus a reincarnation. The actors took their roles very seriously and Farrelly brothers showed great restraint and respect for the genius of the original. The movie should do well because it is full of instant gratification jokes and the new generation of Kids can’t wait for long, drawn out punch lines. I also saw the new stooges on WWE last monday and they were hilarious.

  11. versipellusfenris April 16, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    I thought this looked pretty terrible and as I work in a movie theatre; I polled regular guests (read: the ones’ whose opinions I respect and don’t just like every crappy movie that’s released) on their way out of the auditorium. I was pretty surprised that they all were pretty impressed. Other guests also really liked it; young and old.

    I guess maybe there is something to this casting; maybe I’ll have to check this one out.

  12. ramiungarthewriter April 16, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    I’m coitenly excited to see the film. Nyuck Nyuck.

  13. natasiarose April 16, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    I was never a fan of the Three Stooges, but I’m sooo excited that there is an out actor playing a stooge and no one has protested it! Woohoo!

    Great review 🙂

  14. gothichydran126 April 16, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    Yikes. As soon as I saw the title of your post I had to cringe. I’ve seen the previews on TV and they certainly didn’t excite me (I just cringed a bit more). Now if they did a documentary about their lives then I’d be all for seeing the film. But since that didn’t happen I’ll just wait and have a glimpse of it when it appears on the movie channels.

  15. Constance V. Walden April 16, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    I always enjoyed watch the three stooges on television. I got to see that movie. Connie
    http://7thandvine.wordpress.com/

  16. Jason Ministries April 16, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Can’t wait to enjoy this one. 🙂 I have been a Stooge fan since early child years. Next to Abbott and Costello, the Stooges rule slap-stick comedy! 🙂

  17. Ammon April 16, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    Color me surprised. I have expected to read nothing but scathing reviews of the new Stooges movie. As someone who spent many an early Sunday morning watching the original Stooges on KTLA growing up, I have been somewhat trepidatious about seeing it, but I may have to check it out now.

  18. Terry Malloy's Pigeon Coop April 16, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    To be honest, this hadn’t even registered on my radar, but i wouldn’t mind checking it out now. Nice review.

  19. Darnell April 16, 2012 at 5:53 pm

    Thanks for the review. I used to watch the original shows with my dad so I’ll definitely check this movie out.

  20. lijiujiu April 16, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    I love the film and nice review.

  21. ConfusedDi April 16, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    Hope that this movie will be available in DK soon!

  22. mathias42 April 16, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    Good to hear it respects it’s origins. I was really wondering about that. I’m not a fan of the stooges, but my father is. I really wondered how that concept could be relaunched successfully.

  23. getmotivatedwithgwin April 16, 2012 at 9:56 pm

    I also saw the Three Stooges this weekend at the urging of my grandson. I really didnt want to see the movie until it came out on DVD , but the things we do for our grandchildren is amazing. Overall my husband and I was pleasantly surprised at the orginality of the characters. The story line was not so bad but I do agree it drug during the childhood years. Anyway loved the popcorn and time spent with my grandson. At the end of my Saturday afternoon I can say I had a great time.

  24. introvegirl April 16, 2012 at 11:05 pm

    I loved the movie! My dad marveled all day at how the actors in this movie did everything to a “T” . He loves the Three Stooges, as do I 🙂

    Thank you for sharing! Happy blogging!

    Introvegirl

  25. Joe Pineda April 16, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    Really complete and amazing review. It’s the best when someone takes care of pointing out pros and cons, perks and flaws in this medium. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

  26. James April 17, 2012 at 1:20 am

    I assumed the review was being completely sarcastic…

  27. mcforesight April 17, 2012 at 6:06 am

    I saw them at RAW, wwe,… lol… with Santino Marella, hahahaha

  28. Musal April 17, 2012 at 6:10 am

    Reblogged this on Musal's Blog and commented:
    So i must see this movie

  29. frankeeg April 17, 2012 at 7:22 am

    G’day from Downunder. I still have some difficulty getting my head around the Three Stooges as Moe, Larry & Curly. Ther original and the best, in my opinion, were Moe, Larry and Shemp. Shemp was played by Shemp Howard. At some time he left the cast for reasons not not known and was replaced by his brother, Curly Howard. Some years later Curly died and was in turn replaced by the original Stooge, Shemp Howard. I wrote about the Stooges in my blog http://frankeeg.wordpress.com/106-sunday-18th-october-2009-more-visitors-old-cartoons-and-goin%E2%80%99-bush%E2%80%A6/ I understand more episodes featuring Shemp were made than episodes featuring Curly. It seems disappointing the movies only includes Curly.

    • CultureCast-Z April 17, 2012 at 9:07 pm

      Frank-

      Thanks for the comment. I want to clarify something about Shemp. He originally left the group to perform his own solo act, which was exceedingly popular but obviously not as well remembered as the Moe/Larry/Curly act. Yes after Curly’s stroke in the 40s he was replaced by his brother Shemp, that is very true. Also, after Shemp died in 1955, footage of him was recycled and reused in order to make “new” Stooge shorts well after Shemp’s death. This phenomenon led to Hollywood director Sam Raimi crediting extras as “fake Shemps” as a joke!

      -Z-

  30. d_vaz April 17, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    I was wondering about how it would be, cause I always hate when old stuff is remade badly.

  31. superdefective April 17, 2012 at 7:47 pm

    thank you for your review

  32. Zellie M. Quinn April 17, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    Can’t wait to make my hubby take me to see it now!
    (Actually he likes them more than me- but now I’m convinced I want to see it too!)

  33. djtj57 April 17, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    thank you for the review, definatly going to see it!

  34. John Purroy Jackson April 18, 2012 at 12:10 am

    Thanks for that. Like your headline says, now I don’t have to roll the dice. Good synopsis as well.

  35. theebonygirl April 18, 2012 at 4:48 am

    i feel as if they did an accurate remake of this compared to some that they do today

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  37. neumanntwin April 18, 2012 at 9:31 am

    I guess I’m gonna have to go watch it now…thank you!

  38. Dale Long April 18, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    Great review! I’d heard so many negative ones by supposed “Stooge Afficianatos” that it’s nice to hear a good review. When they first announced they were bring the Stooges back with Jim Carey as Curly, Sean Penn as Larry and Benicio Del Toro as Moe I was intrigued but wary. When I saw the recent clip I had renewed hope that this remake wasn’t a buthering (read: re-imaged) a la Starsky and Hutch etc.
    This cast, while on paper, didn’t seem to fit, seems to really fire on all cylinders. Maybe they will do a follow-up film and include Shemp and Curly Joe (Anyone else see John Pinette as him?).
    Looking forward to seeing this.

  39. Richard McCargar April 18, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    I’m still looking forward to seeing it. I grew up watching them (born in ’57).
    Great post, and congratulations on your “fresh-pressed” accomplishment! That isn’t likely to happen for me, as I post video guitar licks/solos and songs with tablature. Doesn’t have the same kind of broad appeal. Once again, congrats!

  40. danielalexcook April 23, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    Really great review of the remake to this classic comedy show. I loved watching The Three Stooges t.v. shows they were so funny and when i went to go see the movie it made me love it ever more. What i thought was kind of funny, but important to have at the end of the movie was when they showed everyone that all the tools they used to hit one another with weren’t real and how they poked there eyes by hitting right above the eyes. They also warned everyone not to try this at home. Whats funny is back when the t.v. show first came out there weren’t any warnings and now a days you have to put warnings on everything cause our generation. All in all I give the movie a 10 out of 10 and would be a fun movie for all ages to go see.

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  42. Builders in Bangalore April 29, 2012 at 7:07 am

    i watch this movie…its superb

  43. thebluesmerf April 30, 2012 at 2:41 pm

    My dad is a huge Stooge fan and so he was very excited for me to see it. He’s watched it a grand total of 3 times in the theater and I’m sure as soon as it’s on DVD he’ll own it. Surprisingly, I liked it a lot! I usually don’t like slapstick comedy, but there’s something about this movie that had me cracking up. I recommend it — especially for a family outing!

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