.......... title card ..........

    The Bullfighters    
    11 May 1945    
    Director:  Malcolm St. Clair
Producer:  Sol M. Wurtzel
Writer:  Scott Darling
Cinematography:  Norbert Brodine
    Twentieth Century Fox
18 May 1945
feature/69 mins
....... Laurel and Hardy are detectives who have traveled to Mexico to apprehend a wanted woman.  After getting off their plane, the boys hail a taxi but have herds of people who rush past them to get in first.  When a second car pulls up the boys do manage to squeeze in.  Unfortunately as it drives off with a full load of passengers it is revealed Ollie in the middle of the road with the car door over his head and Stan on the floor.  A third taxi pulls up and the boys are delighted to have this one all to themselves... briefly.
Stan and Ollie check into the Matador Hotel, where Stan observes a fellow guest (Hank Worden) forging his name by signing an "X" in the registration.  Ollie reveals to the desk clerk that they are private detectives here on business, looking for a woman by the name of Hattie Blake/Larceny Nell.
A businessman (Edward Gargan) walks into the foyer and is practicing an important speech.  He sits down at the fountain and is soon joined by Stan and Ollie as they stake out the hotel for their criminal.  After Ollie sits on the man's top hat, Stan decides to fiddle with the water system, turning on the taps to spray Ollie in the back of the head.  Ollie, angered by this, thinks it is the fault of the gentleman sitting next to him and an exchange of flicking water commences.
The water fight slowly escalates until the point where Gargan throws a pot of water at Ollie, who shields himself behind the desk clerk who has come over to break it up.  The police rush in and demand an explanation.  Stan offers that he was minding his own business when he turned the tap.  It becomes clear he was the catalyst and an attempt of punishment is made by Ollie, which unfortunately backfires with him getting another soaking.
Big businessman/promoter Richard K. Muldoon is in his office with an exotic dancer, Cochita (Diosa Costello) when he is paid a visit by two acquaintances (Richard Lane and Irving Gump) who have brought him publicity photographs of their bullfighter, Don Sebastian (who bears a striking resemblance to one Mr. Laurel).  Muldoon is upset because he believes the man in the photo is the same man who wrongly accused him of a crime eight years ago in Peoria, Illinois.
The confusion of Stan's identical resemblance continues as a group of women lust after the photo of Don Sebastian (the bullfighter).  One fan (Lorraine De Wood) kisses Stan full on the mouth, causing him to faint (a la The Fixer Uppers).  Hot Shot Coleman (Lane) spots Stan in the hotel foyer and believing him to be Don Sebastian, welcomes him to Mexico.  The boys boastfully tell Coleman of their involvement in Muldoon's conviction, after which he informs them he now works for the man, who was released from prison when the real man confessed.
The boys are overcome with a sudden realisation of panic as they discover Muldoon is in town and are determined to apprehed their criminal as quickly as possible so they can flee back to America.  They sit back down at the fountain and Stan is approached by a beautiful blonde, who offers her hand to him, believing him to be the famous fullfighter.  The desk clerk tips them off that this is Larceny Nell, the woman they are searching for, and so they follow her into the bar area.  Ollie produces the extradition papers and places her under arrest.  She snatches the document and stuff it down her bra.  She refuses to come quietly and so Stan resorts to alternative measures.  He cracks open an egg and empties the content into her shoe.  She empties her shoe onto Stan's sock.  This continues until about 30 eggs are wasted in some aggressive tit-for-tat sequence.  Gloves, hats, socks and jacket pockets are all victims of egg-breaking.

Favourite bit    

•Filmed mid-November - December 16, 1944. [source: Randy Skretvedt]
•This was the last film Stan and Ollie made for a big studio.
•The scene where Stan and Ollie attempt to apprehend Larceny Nell at the bar is a re-working of the same scene involving Lupe Velez eleven years previously in Hollywood Party.
•The Region 1 DVD features a scene-by-scene commentary track from Scott MacGillivray.
•Stan Laurel not only co-wrote but also directed large sections of the movie.  One of the scenes directed by Laurel was where businessman Edward Gargan is practicing his speech at the water fountain.  Another is the apprehension of Larceny Nell at the bar.
Did you notice?
•The opening shots of Mexico are similar to the same opening shots of France in The Flying Deuces.
•The license plate of the cab that eventually transports the boys to their Hotel Matador is C-50 26.
•A total of twelve passengers (including Stan and Ollie) are seen getting out of the taxi when it reaches the hotel.
•The boys play private detectives - the same as they did in their previous picture.
•Stan and Ollie are given room 410 at the hotel.
•The inscription on Richard K. Muldoon's office door reads: "Richard K. Muldoon, Sports Promoter / Bullfighting / Boxing / Wrestler

Stan Laurel
Oliver Hardy
Margo Woode
Señorita Tangerine
Richard Lane
'Hot Shot' Coleman
Carol Andrews
Hattie Blake a.k.a. 'Larceny Nell'
Diosa Costello
Ralph Sanford
Richard K. Muldoon
Rafael Storm
Desk clerk
Rory Calhoun
El Brilliante, disgusted matador
Lorraine De Wood
One of Don Sebastian's admirers
Edward Gargan
Vasso, man practicing speech
Gus Glassmire
Irving Gump
Mr. Gump
Jay Novello
Luis, maitre d'
Ralph Platz
Mexican boy at bull farm
Cyril Ring
Cafe customer
Emmett Vogan
Max Wagner
Hank Worden
DVD screencapture - Lord Heath - Laurel & Hardy - Another Nice Mess - http://www.lordheath.com/ Lillian Porter
Muldoon's secretary





†several screenshots provided by Jim Clewer