The Three Stooges: Goofs on the Loose

Having long heard the argument that a fundamental difference between men and women is that men like The Three Stooges and women don't, I've decided to step up to the challenge. The Three Stooges: Goofs on the Loose compiles four newly restored, and colorised, shorts (including sound — those slaps positively ring!). Such angry men, these Stooges. Plots don't matter, as it's all about the gag, and they're quick with it too. Each short is barely 15 minutes long and they're jam-packed with slaps, jabs and potential maiming. They're also as quick with the punches as the one-liners, which makes this collection much more enjoyable than I expected. Men in Black (1934), an Oscar-nominated short that pits the Stooges against the medical establishment (I have no idea why it's called Men in Black) and Punch Drunks (1934) are the real gems in this collection. The Sitter Downers (1937) and At the Races (1937) are more formulaic (if that's even possible) with plots built around a few gags. You need Curly trapped in cement and Moe clubbed with a two-by-four? Simple, have them build a pre-fabricated house. The only extra included (aside from the choice of watching each short in colour or black and white) is a featurette about the colorisation process. It would have been nice to have an essay or commentary about history and/or significance of the Stooges. Basically, something about the Stooges themselves is needed, rather than the folks at Sony who poured over ads on eBay to find the right tint for the ketchup bottle. I might be too old to convert now but I did laugh a lot. No guffaws, mind you, but plenty of chuckles. The polite Canadian girl in me wishes they'd say, "Sorry I hit you with a mallet/ poked you in the eye/ stabbed you with a knitting needle" now and then but I'm willing to admit that that's entirely my problem. (Columbia TriStar)