Olive Films’ Operation Petticoat Re-Issue Couldn’t Have Come At A Better Time

Courtesy: Olive Films

Courtesy: Olive Films

Cary Grant and Tony Curtis’ 1959 military-based rom-com Operation Petticoat is a wonderfully entertaining story that any true lover of film will appreciate. And now thanks to the people at Olive Films, audiences get to see for themselves just why this classic is a must see for audiences new and old alike. That is because Olive Films re-issued the classic comedy earlier this week. This classic comedy could not have come along at a better time. In an era when originality and creativity in Hollywood have become all but extinct, this re-issue serves as an economic and entertaining alternative to all of the prequels, sequels, and remakes currently polluting theaters across the country. The first and most obvious reason that Operation Petticoat works so well is its script. And the acting especially on the part of Curtis and Grant makes for more than its share of laughs. Lastly, audiences will appreciate in this re-issue that the movie looks exactly as it did in its original premiere. These three factors together make this new re-issue of Operation Petticoat an absolute must-have for any true classic movie lover even without any bonus material.

Military movies and rom-coms were two of the most prominent genre of films released in the golden era of Hollywood’s major studios. Unlike in the current era of movies though, those movies actually served a purpose. That aside, few studios even then could boast films that blended both genres into one work. There were military dramas that mixed in a romantic drama. But finding one that mixes the rom-com and military is difficult to say the least. Enter Operation Petticoat. Co-writers Stanley Shapiro and Mauriche Richlincrafted a story with their script that successfully blends both genres into one. The success comes mainly in the ability of both writers to have balanced the elements of both genres without letting one overpower the other. Even with part of the story being a rom-com, the romance is kept to an extreme minimum. Yet there is still a slight level of romance there that some audiences will appreciate. The script’s comedic element is more prominent and will most certainly have audiences of all ages laughing uproariously. Audiences won’t be able to help but laugh as Grant and Curtis face off against one another, and even have to deal with the women brought on board by Lt. JG Nicholas Holden. Their ability to interpret the script makes the movie even more worth watching.

Cary Grant (Arsenic and Old Lace, North By Northwest, Notorious) and Tony Curtis (Some Like it Hot, The Defiant Ones, The Great Race) make Operation Petticoat even more enjoyable thanks to their ability to interpret Shapiro and Shiplin’s script for this movie. Neil Simon’s famed buddy comedy The Odd Couple was still some nine years away when Operation Petticoat premiered. Yet Grant and Curtis become their own Odd Couple of sorts as they face off. Audiences will find themselves laughing hysterically at the contradiction of Holden’s naïve yet rather devious personality set against Grant’s far more straight-laced Lt. Cmdr. Matt T. Sherman. And as straight-laced as Sherman shows himself to be, he has his own wit about himself that will have audiences laughing just as much. This is especially obvious as he takes Holden’s personal belongings to make up for Holden stealing a man’s pig at one point. This is one of the most entertaining of the duo’s moments on screen together. He also breaks up an attempt by Holden to woo one of the women that Holden brings on board, making for another of so many wonderfully entertaining moments tossed into the movie. Audiences will find plenty more such moments when they purchase this DVD for themselves. It isn’t the last of the positives that audiences will appreciate in this new re-issue, either. Last but not least of this re-issue’s positives is the overall look of the film.

The overall presentation of Operation Petticoat in its re-issue from Olive Films is the last piece of this movie that audiences will appreciate. Watching the movie, audiences will see that it looks just as it did in its original presentation some fifty-five years ago. And thanks to today’s technology, its DVD presentation is automatically upconverted on any Blu-ray player. It is available on both DVD and Blu-ray. But those that purchase the DVD will be just as impressed with the movie’s look when it is upconverted. Audiences can spot every little nuance of the original movie’s quality whether on DVD or Blu-ray. It’s like watching a movie on Turner Classic Movies without having to turn on the television. Even without any bonus material, the movie’s overall look alongside the acting on the part of its lead actors, and the script collectively make Olive Films’ re-issue of Operation Petticoat a true must see for any true lover of classic films.

Olive Films’ brand new re-issue of Operation Petticoat is available now in stores and online. It can be ordered online direct from Olive Films’ online store at http://www.olivefilms.com/?s=Operation+Petticoat&submit=. More information on this and other titles available from Olive Films is available online at http://www.olivefilms.com, http://www.facebook.com/olivefilms and http://twitter.com/twitter.com/olivefilms. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Love Happy A Comedy That Will Make The Whole Family Happy

Courtesy:  Olive Films

Courtesy: Olive Films

Love Happy, the last of the Marx Brothers’ big screen starring vehicles, has largely been panned by audiences and critics alike ever since its debut almost sixty-five years ago.  The main reason for this is perhaps the story’s script, which was co-written by Frank Tashlin, Mac Benoff, Ben Hect, and Harpo Marx.  Being that Harpo was one of the individuals behind this movie’s script, it should come as no surprise that he [Harpo] was at the center of the story while brothers Groucho and Chico played little more than bit parts.  Now, having taken this into consideration, it becomes clear why the movie has remained one of the least favorite of critics and Marx Brothers fans alike.  But a closer examination of the movie reveals why it deserves more credit than it has gotten over the sixty decades plus since it premiered.  Harpo being placed in the lead role is actually a very important reason that audiences should give this movie a second look.  His brothers may play bit parts in this film.  But even in bit parts, they are still entertaining in their own right.  That is another reason that the movie is more entertaining than some would have audiences believe.  And last but not least, the movie’s musical numbers will entertain audiences—even the relatively unnecessary harp solo played in the park near the story’s end.  It can be forgiven considering it exhibits once more Harpo’s talent.  Anyone that takes all of these factors into consideration in watching the new re-issue of Love Happy from Olive Films will see that the film’s critics didn’t see the film for its true value.

The biggest complaint that critics and audiences alike have had about Love Happy over the years is that the movie takes away from The Marx Brothers’ legacy.  They have argued that it does so because it focuses more on Harpo than on the Marx Brothers as a unit.  Making for even more difficulty is that Harpo has always been considered more of a sidekick style character than leading man.  That’s because his brand of comedy was more physical than verbal.  It forced audiences to actually pay attention to his acting, rather than just hear anything.  The age of the silent film had ended years before this movie.  So, audiences had become quite acquainted and comfortable with movies with sound.  That being the case, it becomes increasingly clear why audiences even today are less accepting of this movie.  But if the same audiences were more willing to invest themselves in the movie more fully, they would see the true value in the story.  Said audiences would see the level of physical comedy on the part of Harpo and just how entertaining said comedy makes the movie in the long run.  It really was and is today an art form that has largely been lost.  So to that extent, it makes Love Happy even more of a jewel of a re-issue for any true classic movie fan.

Harpo Marx’s own brand of physical comedy and mime is a wonderful foundation on which the script behind Love Happy Rests.  It is however, not all that makes the movie truly worth watching.  Even in bit parts, Harpo’s brothers Groucho and Chico were entertaining in their own right.  Their screen time might not have been nearly as much as in past Marx Brothers movies.  But even in more diminished roles, both continued to show their prowess.  Groucho was still just as quick witted both as narrator and as the bit part detective Sam Grunion.  His interaction with a then-unknown Marilyn Monroe as an unnamed client is just as hilarious as his interactions with other female cast members in previous works such as Night at the Opera and Duck Soup.  On the other side of the coin, Chico had his own brand of comedy, too.  Both brothers showed an understanding and a respect for their roles in their own way.  Neither one tried to ham it up at all.  Both men did what they had always done, therefore letting Harpo’s own brand of comedy take the limelight.  That respect on the part of Chico and Groucho in relation to Harpo having the lead made for a fully entertaining story.  And audiences that are open-minded enough to see this will agree with that sentiment, too.

The balance in the acting between Harpo, Groucho, and Chico is key to the success of the script behind Love Happy.  That isn’t to say that the script doesn’t deserve some applause.  It is just outrageous enough to be believable as both a crime story and a laugh-a-minute comedy.  There is one more aspect of the movie’s script that makes the story in whole so enjoyable.  That final aspect is the collective musical numbers included in the story.  Musical numbers were still very prevalent in movies even at the start of the 1950s.  That is one thing that thankfully hadn’t yet changed in the film industry at that point in time.  One of the best of the movie’s musical numbers comes in the form of Harpo’s own harp solo late in the story.  He is with Maggie (Vera-Ellen) in the park discussing her future, when out of nowhere he pulls out his harp in an attempt to cheer her up.  Given it seems a bit out there that he just happened to have his harp right there at that moment.  But his talent is unrivaled. That isn’t to take away from the talent of Vera-Ellen as she sings her own number or what may or may not have been Chico on the piano late in the movie. In an age when the majority of movie makers fill their stories with mostly sex and violence, these musical numbers prove that such substance is just as entertaining today as it was decades ago. And together with the equally impressive acting on the part of the Marx Brothers and a fun story, the musical numbers help to make Love Happy a movie that is more than deserving of a second look whether for the first time in a long time or for the first time ever.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.