.......... ..........

    ~ A n y   O l d   P o r t ! ~    
    Director:  James W. Horne
Producer:  Hal Roach
Editor:  Richard C. Currier
Cinematography:  Art Lloyd
    Hal Roach Studios/Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
5 March 1932
sound short/2 reels
    Film No.

....... Stan and Ollie are sailors on shore leave as they walk down the street with Stan dragging Ollie's sea bag along the floor.  Ollie reprimands Stan for doing so and tells him to throw it over his port shoulder; so he does, and knocks Ollie into the middle of the road.
A little further down the street is Ye Mariner's Rest, a small hotel run by the nasty-looking proprietor Walter Long.  Inside, he sits by and watches his young cleaner scrubbing the floor and sarcastically acknowledges her intention to get married.  Suddenly the idea of her getting married appeals to his sinister, selfish self.  He suggests - then demands that she should marry him before asking her for a kiss.  She slaps him around the face and he laughs then throws her back to the floor.  Fortunately the awkwardness is disrupted by the doorbell.  In step Stan and Ollie who ask for a room (after wanting to see the floorplan!)  Stan says he wants a room with a "southern explosion".  They are asked to sign the guest register but Stan has difficulty in removing the pencil from the stone and so starts carving the exposed end with a conveniently-placed penknife on the counter.  Ollie takes over and signs his name first.  A simple-yet-effective routine of Stan being forced to remove his hat before signing the register and then getting flustered with dipping his finger into the inkpot follows.
Stan continues to be distracted by not being allowed to sign his name and wear his hat at the same time (!); so much so that he tips the bottle of ink all over the guest register.  After wiping the mess with his coat and ripping half the register up, he finally signs the register with a "X."
Long telephones the Justice of the Peace (Bobby Burns) and calls him over to the hotel to perform a marriage ceremony; at which point the maid runs crying upstairs as Stan and Ollie come down from their room.  Long tells them she is crying with happiness because she is going to be getting married - to him.  The boys do a double take as Stan comes out with "what a terrible catsafter me".  Ollie suggests a game of pool and the two take refuge in an adjoining room.  The maid tries to flee the hotel but is caught by Long.  Her screams appeal for Stan and Ollie to help her.
The boys take action, removing their coats and rolling up their shirt sleeves (well, Ollie at least).  Stan grabs a pool ball and launches it at Long's head.  No effect!  Ollie does the same, with the same outcome.  It's at this point they realise it would be futile to proceed in trying to inflict any kind of physical harm on Long, and quickly re-dress to continue their game of pool.
The judge arrives and reminds Long that he will require two witnesses for the marriage ceremony.  It's pretty obvious who he is going to pick!  The girls' cries from inside a locked closet are a reminder of her reluctance to be married and Ollie boldly declares that he and Stan will not assist.  When Long grabs Ollie, Stan seizes the opportunity to pinch the key to the closet and an exchange of passing throws commences.  An exposed electric fan on a shelf has an inevitable effect when the judge gets too close to it.  He runs out, screaming as the three men grapple for the key to the closet.
Long chases Stan and Ollie into a dining room and the key exchanges hands a couple more times before Long is sandwiched in the long table.  He escapes and continues to give chase before running into a sliding door which the boys have strategically used to their advantage.  They run into a kitchen and barricade the door from the inside, placing a cupboard, a chair and even a barrel up against it.  This is no problem for Long, who uses a second door to access.  The chase and exchange of the key continues and as Ollie gets Long to follow him out through the back door Stan uses this time to unlock the closet to let the lady out.  Stan, Ollie and Long run out onto the dock and the key is thrown into the water.  Long goes in after it.  He later emerges from the water threatening to catch up with them one day as the boys flee.
When Stan confesses having left their money in the hotel room Ollie has to come up with a plan to get some back.  As luck would have it the boys are spotted by an old friend of Ollie's (Harry Bernard), who is seated at a lunch wagon in the street.  They engage in conversation when Harry offers Ollie $50 to take place in a four-round preliminary boxing bout.  Ollie agrees and asks for the fee up front before ordering a huge dinner for himself.  Stan half expects the same but is slightly disappointed when he is told he cannot eat because he has to fight later.
The night of Stan's fight comes and Ollie leads him to the ring.  Both men get inside the squared circle and receive a round of applause and laughs.  Stan wipes his feet in the customary wooden box and by doing so kicks it into the bell, bringing the crowd to hysterics.  Ollie also inadvertently rouses the crowd when he tells Stan to limber up and demonstrates how to do so before ripping the seat of his pants.  He covers his embarrassment with a towel but Stan lifts it up to take a look for himself.  Ollie smacks Stan for doing so, but Stan throws a gloved punch back in his face.
In the opposite corner of the ring the opponent has arrived.   It's none other than Walter Long.  A complete lock of dread fills Stan's face and his ears begin to wiggle furiously before his panic forces him to try and flee.  Long acknowledges Stan with a grimace before instructing his corner man (Dick Gilbert) to fill his boxing glove with heavy metal objects.  At ringside Ollie makes a bet with a drunken spectator that Mugsy Long wins.
The referee (Sam Lufkin) introduces the fighters and then explains the rules to them both before the bout starts.  The bell rings and Stan throws a sucker punch at Long before both men are dragged to their corners to begin.  Stan removes his robe and with it, his gloves.  The fight begins and after a word of advice from corner man Charlie Hall, Stan flies into action and holds onto his opponent.  After a struggle both fighters lose their gloves.  Stan finds some confidence when he picks up Long's loaded glove and chases him around the ring with it.  Long manages to pull his glove fom Stan's hand - right into his own face, knocking himself out cold.  The referee awards Stan the bout after a countout but is too knocked cold when Stan's hand lands on his head.  When Stan leaves the ring he sees Ollie giving away all of their money to the drunk after the lost bet and takes a swing at him but hits a police officer (Eddie Baker) instead.  They make a quick exit.

Favourite bit
During the boxing match with Walter Long, Stan finds some courage when he picks up his opponent's illegally-loaded glove.  The underdog (Laurel) begins to chase the much bigger Long around the ring until eventually scoring a knock-out blow and winning the bout in the first round.

•Filmed September 14-23, 1931 (by James W. Horne).  Additional scenes were filmed November 9-11, 1931 by James Parrott (these were the boxing sequences). [source: Randy Skretvedt]
•The boys had completed their scenes for On The Loose and Helpmates before re-shoots were required in November. [source: Randy Skretvedt]
•This was one of only a small handful of their films which was not made available in colour on DVD.
•Dick Gilbert, who plays Walter Long's second in the boxing sequences, was a boxer in real life.
•Scenes involving James Finlayson and Tiny Sandford were shot but later deleted.
Did you notice?
•The title of the film shown in the opening credits is spelled out with rope.
•The name of the hotel run by Walter Long is Ye Mariner's Rest.  When we see the first shot of the hotel Walter Long can be seen through the net curtains inside.  Also a man can be seen outside the window lying down with his feet up on the side and a hat pulled over his face.
 •A cafe called Pete's For Eats - Steaks & Chops is seen a couple of times throughout the film on the same street as the hotel.  Laurel and Hardy once ate steak at a small cafe called Pete's in Below Zero
•When the boys check into the hotel they are given the room upstairs, third door on the left.
•There is a framed lobster at the foot of the stairs and a stuffed monkey at the top, in the hotel.
•Ollie suggests he and Stan shoot some pool.  He had obviously forgiven Stan for the pool incident in Brats then!
•The stairs to the first floor in the hotel go up and to the left.
•There are eleven pool cues in the rack at the pool table.  The triangle for the table is resting above the scoreboard.
•It's not clear to see which balls are thrown at Walter Long's head, but the first one Stan throws is a 'stripe' ball (which would mean the it would be a number between 9-15).  The second ball (the one Ollie throws) is the white (cue) ball.
•There is a fire extinguisher hanging next to the main desk in the hotel.
•For two men in a panic and trying to barricade themselves into the kitchen very quickly, I think it's amazing how accurately they manage to balance a huge barrel on top of the cupboard next to the door.
•In the kitchen when Ollie slams into the wall, the whole wall shifts.  Shortly afterwards Walter Long places his left hand upon the same wall to steady himself and again the wall moves.  It certainly wasn't made of bricks - that's for sure!
•It is not clearly seen whether that is Walter Long jumping into the water or not, though he is seen at the foot of the rungs with his leg in the water and his clothing is wet.
•The grocery shop on the corner has adverts in the window for Rinso washing powder and Calumet baking powder.
•The meal that Ollie orders at the wagon: a bowl of clam chowder, a large porterhouse steak smothered with onions, a baked potato, lima beans, buttered beets and a combination salad.  For dessert; a double portion of apple pie with a large piece of American cream cheese and a flagon of coffee.  I think it would be highly unlikely that a wagon with such a limited amount of space and menu would be able to provide everything Ollie had ordered!?
•The lunch wagon owner, Frank Terry is smoking a cigar... something he wouldn't get away with doing in the food industry in today's world!  Also, as he raises his right arm it appears he has a tattoo on his wrist.
•When we first see the crowd at the boxing match Baldwin Cooke appears in the second row back on the end of the row on the right-hand side.
•I seriously doubt Walter Long would have needed a loaded glove to defeat Stan in a boxing match, do you?
•It's Long's right-hand glove which is loaded with the metal.
•Ollie's ringside bet with spectator Will Stanton is with odds at 10/1.  Stanton accepts the bet at $5.
•Will Stanton is in seat 10.
•If Stan and Ollie had no money and then earnt $50 for their fight, how was it that Ollie was able to give the drunk all fifty dollars?  Who paid for Ollie's lunch then?
•When the referee introduces the fighters to the crowd, Ollie is seen outside the ring on the floor.  But in the next shot when the fighters walk towards the centre of the ring Ollie is with Stan.
•The chief of police (Eddie Baker) is wearing a ring on his right hand and has the number 27 on his cap.
•Stan knocks out three men: Walter Long, Sam Lufkin and Eddie Baker.

Stan Laurel
Oliver Hardy
Jacqueline Wells
Walter Long
Mugsie Long
Eddie Baker
Police chief
Harry Bernard
Harry, boxing promoter
Bobby Burns
Justice of the Peace
Dick Gilbert
Mugsy's second
Charlie Hall
Stan's second
Sam Lufkin
Will Stanton
Frank Terry
Lunch wagon owner
Baldwin Cooke
  Ed Brandenburg
  Jack Hill


Rick Greene (lobby card)

This page was last updated on: 24 February 2018