Series: All Stars w/The Boy Friends

Director: George Stevens
Producer: Hal Roach
Dialogue: H.M. Walker
Photography: Ernest 'Hap' Depew
Editor: Richard C. Currier
Sound: Elmer Raguse

Stars: Mickey Daniels, Grady Sutton, Mary Kornman, David Sharpe, Gertrude Messinger, Spec O'Donnell
Company: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Released: 17 January 1931
Length: 2 reels
Production No.: S-35
Filming dates: August 23 - September 4, 1930;
retakes September 27, 1930; added scenes October 4-7, 1930

Rating: 5/10

Blood And Thunder

Alabam, Dave, Mary and Joyce have just left the Drury Lane School of Dramatic Art where they are rehearsing a play called 'Love's Sweet Pain'. Dave complains that he doesn't want to take part in it but he is talked into carrying on after Mary speaks to him. At the house Gertie wants her brother Mickey out of the way for when her friends come over. Mickey leaves with his fishing rod as the others arrive. He tries to convince Mary into coming with him but she gives Mickey a piece of candy instead before going inside. The babysitter turns up at the house with some goofy-looking baby before the guys go up to the attic to rehearsals on the stage which has been set up there.
Rudy (Spec O'Donnell) is a one-man band who provides the (awful) music accompaniment to the show which is directed by a young man named C. Mortimer Hickey (Ben Hall). Alabam, Gertie and the baby are dressed up and riding a small boat against the backdrop of the ocean whilst unseen people move props for the lighthouse and the waves to represent the sea (it's a truly abysmal scene to watch). The background of the stage is changed behind the curtain and the second act commences with Alabam (wearing a false moustache which keeps flying off every time he sneezes) telling Gertie that she is going to be his slave. Mickey, who has returned to the house overhears the dialogue unaware it is a play being rehearsed and naturally jumps to the wrong conclusions. Alabam tells Gertie that she will be in his power for many years to come. Mickey, who is listening to all of this from under the stairs starts to be concerned. Moreso when he hears Mary confess that she herself has been feeding Mickey poisonous candy.
Mickey's reactions are pretty funny especially as he falls down the stairs after sticking his head through the trapdoor on the stage and having the baby step on his head! When he lands he finds the candy he has been eating wedged into his eye. Alabam continues with his rehearsal speech and threatens to expose Gertie's 'baby' to the world. Mickey sees the baby and hides him outside in a pie wagon then goes back indoors to confront Alabam. Mickey leads Alabam and Dave upstairs and shoves them into a closet with Mickey being dragged inside as well. Mickey manages to overpower the two men and comes out of the closet with a hunchback claiming the poison is starting to take affect. Turns out he has simply buttoned up his shirt to his trousers by mistake in the scuffle.
Mary and Gertie explain that the real baby was hired for part of their play so Mickey rushes outside to try and retrieve him but the pie wagon has taken off. Mickey chases it down the street first on foot and then on a bicycle which he steals from a delivery boy before crashing into the back of the pie wagon and emerging from it with a face full of cream. The delivery boy somehow manages to find his bicycle and assumes the wagon driver is responsible so the two of them get into a pie fight. During all of this the baby has wandered out of the wagon and conveniently into his own home, where Mickey grabs him and runs back to his own house. The cops give chase and find Mickey on his front lawn after he has fallen through the closet in the house. The delivery boy gets the final gag as he emerges from behind the pie wagon with one of its wheels attached to his broken bicycle.

Favourite bit
I rather liked this scene between Mickey and Mary. It seemed so innocent her offering him some candy at the time, little realising that Mickey would later overhear Mary telling Gertie that she had been feeding him poisoned candy!

Copyrighted November 28, 1930.
The fourth film in the series.
Just as the girls are concluding their introductions to the film the screen fades to black just as Beverly (on the left) leans forward to reveal a substantial amount of cleavage.
When Mary arrives at the house with Dave and Alabam, Mickey urges her to "ditch this gang". Mickey and Mary were of course two of the biggest stars in the Our Gang series before they outgrew it and ended up in this series.
Some uneducated idiot has submitted to the irresponsibly, inaccurate IMDb that the babysitter is Dorothy DeBorba. And like the idiots they are, the IMDb haven't even bothered to check this and gone ahead and published it as a fact.
Are we to believe that the back of the closet's wall was built of cardboard? It seems that everybody falls through it and out onto the lawn with relative ease!
Isn't it just a little bit too much of a coincidence to accept that the baby's ride in the back of the pie wagon takes him straight to his house and that he knew to walk in without even being seen. Great security the house has! Oh come on, seriously?
Mickey's jacket has Mary's face on the back of it.
Hugo, the baby, was apparently Mickey Daniels' real-life nephew.
The shots where the dog chases Mickey on the bicycle (shots 6+7 in the locations montage below) were filmed in Palms looking north up Clarington towards Tabor, which was also where Charley Chase filmed "Luncheon At Twelve". Further down the street was 3736 Clarington, the view across the street from where Laurel and Hardy lived in "Sons Of The Desert".
My opinion
Well if you strip out the scenes with the rehearsal this is just about watchable.

Mickey Daniels
Grady Sutton
Mary Kornman
David Sharpe
Gertrude Messinger
Gertie Daniels
Spec O'Donnell
Joyce Coad
Jerry McGowan
Helen, the babysitter
Jay R. Smith
Rehearsal kid who throws water
Bobby Mallon
Rehearsal guy
Clifton Young
Delivery boy on bicycle
Eddie Baker
Pie delivery man
Aileen Carlyle
Baby's mother
Ben Hall
C. Mortimer Hickey
Oscar Rudolph
Actor at rehearsal
Jackie Lee Wilson
Baby Hugo
Bill Knight
Charles McMurphy
Bettymae Crane
Beverly Crane

Introductory titles
Fletcher Tolbert


(click any image to enlarge)

John Bengtson (identification of locations)
Matthew Lydick (identification of Bobby Mallon and Jay R. Smith)
Jesse Brisson (identification of Jackie Lee Wilson, Bill Knight and Charles McMurphy)

This page was last updated on: 12 April 2022