‘Three Little Sew and Sews’ (1939) was the thirty-sixth short subject made by The Three Stooges for Columbia Pictures. It was photographed from Monday, March 21st through Thursday, March 24th 1938 and was released on Monday, January 9th 1939. It is a peak Curly Howard-era short featuring some of Curly’s most uninhibited and robust clowning, especially in the middle section which takes place at a party (the gag where a sofa spring gets attached to the rear of his pants is given ample room–it reappears in at least three or four other Stooge shorts over the years).

The script, by Ewart Adamson, is a remarkably tight piece of structuring–it manages to cram three clear acts into fifteen and a half minutes filled with mistaken identity gags and plot twists, all climaxing in a ludicrous finale on a submarine. The ‘special effects’, which involve a miniature submarine in a small tank, are so third-rate that one can only assume it was part of the filmmakers intent to create something just silly enough for a Stooge short. There are also stock shots of war scenes at the end that are blatantly from other movies–again it feels like their crude artificiality is part of the joke. The final shot–a vision of the Stooges flying toward the afterlife–is one of four times a Stooge short has ended with their deaths, the others being ‘You Natzy Spy’, ‘I’ll Never Heil Again’ and ‘Half Shot Shooters’. And on that happy note…


Sign up for news & updates so you don't miss a thing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *