A lot of people probably don’t know this about me, but I majored in Stoogology at the University of N’yuk N’yuk.
I mention this because of an announcement last week in the entertainment trade paper Daily Variety that filmmakers Peter and Bobby Farrelly, also known collectively as the Farrelly brothers, have revived their long-dormant film project based on the lives of the Three Stooges. The $45 million film comedy is expected to be released in November 2009.
According to Peter Farrelly, the film is not biographical but takes place in the present, although the wacky Stooges will pretty much look, sound and poke eyes like the Stooges of old.
“When the economy started turning,” Farrelly explained, “we felt like the world could use a Stooges slapfest.”
No word on who will play Moe, Larry and Curly, although Farrelly indicated that he and his brother might conduct an “American Idol”-like search for Curly, in which contestants audition in various cities and then are brought to Hollywood for the final casting call.
“We know this is extremely difficult to pull off,” Farrelly said. “We realize some Stooges fans will be upset no matter what we do. We love the Stooges and honor their memory. We hope that next Thanksgiving, dads will introduce their kids to the Stooges and create a new generation of knuckleheads.”
You will notice that Farrelly didn’t say that mothers will take their daughters to the movie. I don’t think this will be a big mother-daughter holiday film.
Girls don’t get the Stooges. They never did. The Stooges are strictly a male thing. Girls think the Stooges are stupid.
Women will walk into a room where a man is watching the Stooges, and say: “Why are you watching this stupid stuff?” Obviously, women haven’t cultivated an appreciation of mindless fun.
I’ve always wondered why I loved the Stooges so much. I also loved the Marx brothers. And the Ritz brothers. I guess I like brother acts.
In the light of adulthood, the Stooges seem pretty silly, and I say that without getting in touch with my feminine side. I think even the dumbest guy would admit that the Stooges’ antics were silly, but that never stopped any guy from loving them. And I think the Farrellys are right. I think the world has gotten so serious that it couldn’t hurt to watch the Stooges again.
But it is not fair that only half the population should get some comic relief from the real world. I feel sorry for women, who will be excluded from this experience next year.
Perhaps I can make the Stooges more inclusionary so that women will appreciate what guys have appreciated for so many years. Therefore, here is a woman’s guide to appreciating the Stooges. Guys do not have to read beyond this point.
1. Eye-gouging in a Stooges movie is funny. It doesn’t lead to a trip to the emergency room or require a referral from an HMO physician to an eye specialist. Curly appears hurt for a moment, but then he returns in the next scene just in time to get hit on the head with a hammer. And, it goes without saying, there are no concussions or CAT scans in a Stooges movie.
1a. Don’t panic when Moe holds out his hand and asks Curly to pick two fingers. Curly knows what Moe has in mind and he’ll block Moe’s attempt to gouge his eyes by placing his hand sideways on the bridge of his nose, thereby preventing Moe’s fingers from reaching their target. This will be repeated about every two minutes. Sometimes, Curly remembers, and sometimes he doesn’t. Don’t get too hung up on logic.
2. When Curly whips out a saw in an operating room, he’s not really cutting into someone’s flesh.
3. If Larry screams into a stethoscope, he’s not really puncturing Moe’s eardrums. And when Moe pulls Larry’s hair, it doesn’t cause premature baldness. Larry always looked that way.
4. When Curly gets mad, he likes to slap himself in the face with both hands before planting his foot and walking in circles. Relax and enjoy the dance.
5. Finally, the word “certainly” is always pronounced “soi-tun-ly.” *