Review: ‘Way Out West’

Manner in which this comedy falters and stumbles along is probably due both to formula direction and scripting. Three are credited with the scenario and two [Jack Jevne and Charles Rogers] for the original story. Seemingly too many took a hand; plot reads that way.

Manner in which this comedy falters and stumbles along is probably due both to formula direction and scripting. Three are credited with the scenario and two [Jack Jevne and Charles Rogers] for the original story. Seemingly too many took a hand; plot reads that way.

In general pattern the Laurel & Hardy entry follows closely the old methods used on their feature shorts. There’s too much driving home of gags.

They sing and dance in this one, both to neat returns. The two boys are commissioned to deliver a deed to a gold mine. They find out, after handing it over, that the valuable paper has been given to the wrong girl. Hence, the mad race to readjust matters. On this thin framework hang all of the quips. And Oliver Hardy falls into a pool of water for the third time as the eventual fadeout arrives.

James Finlayson again is cast as villain-straight man, which further slows up the action. Rosina Lawrence, heroine who’s supposed to inherit the gold mine, appears only for fleeting glimpses.

1937: Nomination: Best Score

Way Out West

Production

M-G-M. Director James W. Horne; Producer Hal Roach, Stan Laurel; Screenplay Charles Rogers, Felix Adler, James Parrott; Camera Art Lloyd, Walter Lundin; Editor Bert Jordan; Music Marvin Hatley (dir.); Art Director Arthur I. Royce

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1937. Running time: 64 MIN.

With

Stan Laurel Oliver Hardy Sharon Lynn James Finlayson Stanley Fields Vivian Oakland
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