The Best of Bud Abbott & Lou Costello, Vol. 4 [2 Discs] [DVD]
- SKU: 7487784
- Release Date: 10/04/2005
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- Closed Captioned
The World of Abbott and Costello is a dismal attempt by Universal Pictures to cash in on the popularity of Robert Youngson's silent-movie compilation films. Random scenes from eighteen of the films of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello are yanked out of context, then assembled in a patchy continuity by editorial supervisor Sidney Meyers. The footage is overladen with obnoxious narration by comedian Jack E. Leonard, who sounds angry that someone would dare to ask him to show up at the studio. Many of the excerpts are taken from Abbott and Costello's worst films, among them Comin' Round the Mountain, Lost in Alaska, and the execrable Abbott and Costello Go to Mars (a scene from which opens this compilation). All expense was spared in assembling this half-baked "tribute;" even Joseph Gershenson's musical score is parsimoniously lifted from Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops. The sole saving grace of The World of Abbott and Costello are the few gems culled from such A & C classics as Buck Privates, In the Navy, Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, as well as such second-echelon but enjoyable efforts as In Society (featuring the sidesplitting "Susquehanna Hat Company" bit) and The Naughty Nineties (which preserves the immortal "Who's On First"). One final carp: Why exclude the "moving candle" bit from Hold That Ghost? ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy
Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy is the last of the team's vehicles for Universal-International. Stranded in Egypt, Bud and Lou hire themselves out as travelling companions to archeologist Kurt Katch. Before long, Katch is murdered by a group of cultists, and a medallion, embossed with a map which leads to a sacred burial site, is accidentally swallowed by Costello. The boys become the unwilling pawns of the cultists, led by Richard Deacon, and a greedy adventuress, played by Marie Windsor. The last scene finds Costello being menaced by three mummies, two of them bogus. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
This was the last in a string of spoofs that found the comedy duo tangling with various classic Universal Studios monsters. In this case, Slim (Bud Abbott) and Tubby (Lou Costello) play American detectives who cross wits with Dr. Henry Jekyll (Boris Karloff) in Edwardian-era London when they visit to compare techniques with their British counterparts. Meanwhile, Dr. Jekyll is conducting the usual lab experiments on animals before injecting himself with serum, transforming into the vicious Mr. Hyde and launching a killing spree against fellow doctors who scoffed at him. Slim and Tubby participate in the ensuing investigation, and havoc breaks out when Tubby himself is injected, with predictable results. Karloff lends gravity to the film, but by the time this one followed up earlier efforts like Abbott And Costello Meet Frankenstein and Abbott And Costello Meet The Mummy, the team had mostly exhausted the series' comic possibilities. ~ Don Kaye, Rovi
Abbott and Costello Meet Jerry Seinfeld
Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops
The best thing that can be said about Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops is that it's better than the team's previous outing Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Set in 1912, the film casts Bud Abbott and Lou Costello as a couple of New Yorkers who are swindled out of their life savings by a crooked lout (Fred Clark). Pursuing the villain to Hollywood, the boys discover that the double-dealer is now posing as an autocratic Russian film director. To put A&C out of the way, the crook and his partner in crime (Lynn Bari) hire the boys as stunt men, intending to kill them off at the first opportunity. But the comic duo save the day when they enlist the aid of the Keystone Kops in capturing the fleeing villain, who has absconded with the studio payroll. Pretty dull stuff for most of its 78 minutes, Abbott and Costello Meet the Keystone Kops finally comes to life during the climactic chase, which is every bit as funny and thrilling as anything put together in the silent era. Though the film is rife with anachronisms, a measure of authenticity is achieved by such silent-era guest stars as Mack Sennett (who gets to throw a pie at Costello), Heinie Conklin, Herold Goodwyn and Hank Mann. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Abbott and Costello Meet the Monsters