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Lh flying deuces
Lh flying deuces poster

The Flying Deuces is a Laurel & Hardy sound feature film released 20 October 1939.

Summary

On holiday in Paris, Ollie falls in love with Georgette, the beautiful daughter of an innkeeper. She turns down his marriage proposal because there is someone else. Heartbroken, Ollie plans to commit suicide. Just as he about to jump into a river, with Stan joining him, Foreign Legion officer Francois sees them and convinces them to enlist in the Foreign Legion to forget Ollie's failed romance. When Stan asks him how long it will take Ollie to forget, Francois says it will only take a few days.

Right from the start they wreak havoc in training camp, and when they are taken to see the commandant to be introduced to their daily legionnaire duties, he gives them a full litany of long tasks, for which their daily wage is 100 centimes, which, in American currency amounts to only three cents. Hardy flatly tells the commandant neither he nor Stan will have any part of it for only three cents a day, to which Stan concurs that they don't work for less than 25 cents a day. For this uppity attitude they are sentenced to very menial hard labor, washing and ironing a mountain of laundry, with legion officers constantly on their backs. Ollie manages to forget his broken romance completely and, his purpose in joining fulfilled, he and Stan prepare to leave the legion and go back home. Before they do, fed up with the harsh discipline and the endless punishments they had to suffer, Ollie intends to tell off the commandant on their way out. They are unable to find the commandant and unwilling to search for him. So Ollie writes him a very insulting farewell letter and signs it.

Before long they meet Georgette again, and Ollie is at first delighted that she has seemingly changed her mind and come back to him, and proceeds to embrace and kiss her. Ollie, however, becomes un-delighted by Francois, the same Foreign Legion officer who had encouraged them to join the Legion earlier. He icily informs him that Georgette happens to be his wife and threateningly warns him to stay away from her, or else. After Francois leaves, the commandant appears on the scene and grimly tells Stan and Ollie he received their stern farewell note, and it has now become their death warrant. He then pronounces them under arrest for desertion. They are taken to the prison and summarily sentenced to be shot at dawn. Stan amazes Ollie by playing "The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise" on the bedsprings. As he is about to play another piece, the jailor yells at them to be quiet. Later in the evening, someone throws a hint informing them that they can escape by means of a tunnel leading from their cell to the outside wall. Stan brings on an accidental cave-in which causes the underground path to lead to, of all places, Francois and Georgette's dwelling. In no time at all, the whole legion engages in hot pursuit of the boys, who flee to a nearby hangar and hide in an airplane, which Stan accidentally starts. The boys fly it until it ultimately crashes. Stan emerges seemingly unharmed from the crash, but Ollie has died, seen ascending into the heavens, complete with wings. Eventually, however, he is reincarnated (earlier in the film, the duo contemplated being reincarnated) as a horse, complete with mustache and hat, which pleases Stan. Ollie remarks, "Well, here`s another nice mess you've gotten me into."

Cast

  • Stan Laurel as Stan
  • Oliver Hardy as Ollie
  • Jean Parker as Georgette
  • Reginald Gardiner as François
  • Charles B. Middleton as the Legion Commandant
  • Jean Del Val as Sergeant
  • Clem Wilenchick as Corporal
  • Jimmy Finlayson as Jailor