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The true story of Hollywood's greatest comedy double act, Laurel and Hardy, is brought to the big screen for the first time. Starring Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly as the inimitable movie icons, Stan and Ollie is the heart-warming story of what would become the pair's triumphant farewell tour. With their golden era long behind them, the pair embark on a variety hall tour of Britain and Ireland. Despite the pressures of a hectic schedule, and with the support of their wives Lucille (Shirley Henderson) and Ida (Nina Arianda) - a formidable double act in their own right - the pair's love of performing, as well as for each other, endures as they secure their place in the hearts of their adoring public.
Stan & Ollie - A loveletter to Laurel & Hardy and the men behind the bowler hats.
As a lifelong fan for Laurel & Hardy, when I first heard that a film was being made about their later years I was quite hesitant as I wanted them to be treated with the respect and admiration they deserve. As more news kept coming out for the film I became more and more optimistic. When it was announced that Jeff Pope was writing the film I knew that it was going to have some talent behind it. Jeff also wrote Philomena which is one of the best British films in recent years. Then came the news that Steve Coogan and John C Reilly had been cast as The Boys. I was overjoyed and couldn't wait for the film to be released so I could see the finished product. I was not disappointed.
I have been very lucky to see the film twice and I am still so happy with what has been done. I will start by getting the obvious out of the way, Coogan and Reilly have nailed it as Laurel & Hardy. Both have make up and prosthetics to make the challenge easier but you can see that a lot of research has been done by both men. The fact that they are both fans of Laurel & Hardy must have helped with their performances. Their performances are backed up by Shirley Henderson and Nina Arianda as their wives. The scene with them on their own are just as entertaining as the scenes with Stan & Ollie.
The film has some great recreations of classic scenes and routines with careful attention to detail. I have a few issues with the film with certain scenes and events within the storyline but they are minimal and does not take the overall enjoyment of the film away.
In closing I would recommend this film to everyone, fan of Laurel & Hardy or not. This film is truly made with love and respect for Laurel & Hardy and it shows throughout this well made production. With excellent performances, great writing and excellent production values it is a love letter of a strong friendship between two legendary gentlemen. I would personally like to thank every member of the team who worked on this film for all their work, this Laurel & Hardy fan appreciates every bit of work done.
PS - I'm stalking the local cinema to get a copy of the poster which I want for my bedroom wall so fingers crossed lol
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