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Critical Moments

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Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey have caused more than one rift in those beautiful friendships that exist between people. There are some who are firmly convinced that nothing could be funnier than the antics of these two alleged comedians, on the other hand there is a sizeable majority that is just equally certain that the two laugh provokers are not in the slightest degree amusing. Arguing about what is and what is not funny is a sad business and you are wasting your time in trying to prove the point either way.

The latest Wheeler and Woolsey picture entitled “Cockeyed Cavaliers,” which is now current at the Rialto, will in no way help solve the problem, W. and W. fans will love it. It contains all the old gags, situations and burlesque which are so dear to the admirers of this one-time vaudeville and musical comedy team. In plot, and there is little enough, the film follows the exploits of the pair. One of them (Woolsey) passes himself off as physician to the king and gains entrance to the Duke’s palace where with his assistant (Wheeler) they manage to make everyone unhappy. In the end they are found out but not before Woolsey has pursued the beautiful wife (Thelma Todd) of a jealous baron to distraction. To make things even more complicated a wild boar is introduced into the proceedings.

“Cockeyed Cavaliers” is straight burlesque, rough slapstick and without guile. If you like the type of humor that creeps upon you unaware you will not be impressed with this picture. The W. and W. brand of humor is obvious and stereotyped. Given a situation you can almost always guess exactly what joke is about to be cracked. Children who like the obvious and are cruel and realistic should like this latest R. K. O. production but it is rather difficult to understand how an adult with an adult mind could be more than faintly amused.


Eva Le Gallienne who ran the Civic Repertory Theatre down on Fourteenth street until the Theatre Union took over the house will be seen on Broadway this Fall under the management of Arch Selwyn and Harold B. Franklin, who have taken over the Forty-sixth Street Theatre so that Miss Le Gallienne can play “L’Aiglon,” in which she takes a male part, that of the Duke of Reichstadt. This famous play by Rostand has been newly adapted by Clemence Dane, with a new musical score by Richard Addinsell.

“Hat, Coat and Glove,” adapted from the English mystery play which had but a short run on Broadway during the past season, has been adapted for the screen and is now showing at Radio City Music Hall with Ricardo Cortez in the leading role…. James Cagney’s latest “Here Comes the Navy” at the Strand has been held over for another week…. The Rivoli reports that “The House of Rothschild” is doing unusually good business and looks as though it would stay on for some time…. Frank Harris wrote in 1910 a short story called “The Magic Glasses.” Now M-G-M will make it into a picture… The Theatre Union is taking “Stevedore” to London where it will have a two-week tryout at the Embassy Theatre. Paul Robeson, American Negro, will play the leading role….

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