Keep `Em Flying
Chocks and chortles away!
Out of Universal Pictures comes Keep 'Em Flying starring the comedy team of Abbott and Costello with support from Martha Raye, Dick Foran and Carol Bruce. It's directed by Arthur Lubin with music by Charles Previn and was filmed on location at the Cal-Aero school in Ontario, California. Plot sees the bumbling duo and their stunt pilot pal Jinx Roberts (Foran) join the Army Air Force after getting fired from their positions at a carnival & air show. High jinx and love interests will of course follow.
The fifth film outing for Abbott and Costello, and their third featuring the armed forces after Buck Privates & In The Navy, Keep 'Em Flying is one of their better feature length productions. Tho somewhat surprisingly rather thick on plot, the piece is all the better for some narrative substance in that it lets us savour the slaphappy antics of the intrepid duo when their routines come alive. Action sequences to savour here include a runaway torpedo, a spooky carnival fun house and a short sharp shock treatment of Lou falling over his ankle grabbing pants. While there's quality in a dialogue driven skit that the boys perform in a Café-where we are introduced to the bright and bubbly Raye; playing twin sisters who each end up dating the boys. There's also some nice tunes penned by Don Raye & Gene de Paul, with the stand out being "Pig Foot Pete" that was famously nominated for an Academy Award but for the wrong movie (Hellzapoppin').
Funny, daft and even romantic, Keep 'Em Flying soars high enough to entertain the masses. 8/10
Ride `Em Cowboy
The boys own Way Out West ?
Well obviously not close to that brilliant offering from Stan & Ollie, but this is a nice genre attempt from Bud & Lou.
The guys here are peanut vendors at a rodeo show, after accidentally burning their boss's foot they hide away on a train heading west. They end up at the Lazy S ranch and get work despite the fact that they clearly have no idea what they are letting themselves into.
That's as much as you need to know really, there is the usual mix up of songs, love interest, and pure mania that goes with the decent films from the boys considerably large CV. A running plot strand of the guys on the run from Indian's because Lou has accidentally got engaged to a squaw, makes for some great and humorous scenes, but the stand out sequence takes place at a swimming pool, wonderfully funny part of the film. The film isn't really one to win new fans to the comedic talent of the pair because the running time could be too long for some with this brand of humour, but for those already converted, the film sits nicely up at the top with the best of their work.
A-ticket, a-tasket, a green and yellow basket! 7/10