Review: ‘Buck Privates’

Geared at a zippy pace, and providing lusty and enthusiastic comedy of the broadest slapstick, Buck Privates is a hilarious laugh concoction.

Geared at a zippy pace, and providing lusty and enthusiastic comedy of the broadest slapstick, Buck Privates is a hilarious laugh concoction.

Supplied with a compact script and spontaneous direction by Arthur Lubin, Abbott and Costello have a field day in romping through a lightly frameworked yarn that makes little attempt to be serious or credible. Aiding considerably is the appearance of the Andrews Sisters, who do their regularly competent harmonizing of several tuneful melodies.

Abbott and Costello are inducted into the army and assigned to camp. The madcap and zany antics of Costello are displayed in numerous comedy and knock-about sequences that – although the material is familiar – click for solid laughs through the timing of the gags and situations. There’s a light thread of romantic triangle between rich boy, Lee Bowman; comely camp hostess, Jane Frazee; and former chauffeur Alan Curtis.

Buck Privates

Production

Universal. Director Arthur Lubin; Producer Alex Gottlieb; Screenplay Arthur T. Horman, John Grant; Camera Milton Krasner; Editor Philip Cahn; Music Charles Previn

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1941. Running time: 82 MIN.

With

Lee Bowman Alan Curtis Bud Abbott Lou Costello Jane Frazee

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