Uncivil War Birds

Uncivil War Birds is a 1946 film directed by Jules White and starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges (Moe Howard, Larry Fine and Curly Howard). It is the 90th short film released by Columbia Pictures starring the comedians, who released 190 short films for the studio between 1934 and 1959.

Uncivil War Birds
Directed byJules White
Produced byJules White
Written byClyde Bruckman
StarringMoe Howard
Larry Fine
Curly Howard
Eleanor Counts
Marilyn Johnson
Faye Williams
Ted Lorch
Joe Palma
Cy Schindell
John Tyrrell
Lew Davis
CinematographyPhilip Tannura
Edited byCharles Hochberg
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • March 29, 1946 (1946-03-29) (U.S.)
Running time
17:31
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish

Plot

It is the American Civil War, and the Stooges enlist in the service. Moe and Larry accidentally join the Union Army, while Curly manages to correctly sign up with the Confederate. Before the error can be corrected, several Union soldiers order Moe and Larry to lock up their "prisoner." A few moments later, a Confederate general sees Curly being released and, upon seeing Moe and Larry, thinks he has captured two Union soldiers. This mix up goes back and forth several times, until Moe and Larry finally find Confederate uniforms, only to be caught in Union army headquarters. They eventually escape by performing minstrel song-and-dance routine in blackface, with Curly playing a Mammy-type character and Larry strumming a banjo.

Production notes

Uncivil War Birds was filmed on August 24–25, 1945.[1] It is a remake of the 1939 Buster Keaton short Mooching Through Georgia; the stock shot of the union lieutenant on horseback with his battalion of eight was borrowed from that film.[2] The song "Dixie" replaces the Stooges' regular opening theme of "Three Blind Mice" for this film, and continues as background music for approximately twenty seconds into the opening scene.[2]

This marked the final appearance of long-time Stooge supporting actors John Tyrrell and Lew Davis.[2]

Curly's illness

The film was produced after Curly Howard suffered a mild stroke. As a result, his performance was marred by slurred speech, and slower timing, though Curly was more energetic and displayed better timing than in previous shorts. In addition, Moe Howard and Larry Fine are paired together and given the lion's share of the film's dialogue.[2]

References

  1. Pauley, Jim (2012). The Three Stooges Hollywood Filming Locations. Solana Beach, California: Santa Monica Press, LLC. p. 291. ISBN 9781595800701.
  2. Solomon, Jon (2002). The Complete Three Stooges: The Official Filmography and Three Stooges Companion. Glendale, California: Comedy III Productions, Inc. p. 275. ISBN 0971186804.
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