Another Fine Mess

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Another Fine Mess
Another fine mess 1930 poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by James Parrott
Produced by Hal Roach
Written by H.M. Walker
Starring Stan Laurel
Oliver Hardy
Music by Leroy Shield
Cinematography Jack Stevens
Edited by Richard C. Currier
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
November 29, 1930 (1930-11-29)
Running time
28' 09"
Country United States
Language English

Another Fine Mess is a 1930 short comedy film starring Laurel and Hardy. It is based on the 1908 play Home From The Honeymoon by Arthur J. Jefferson, Stan Laurel's father, and is a remake of their earlier silent film, Duck Soup.


Oliver Hardy and Stan Laurel are vagabonds being chased by the police. They hide in the cellar of the mansion of a Quatermain-esque adventurer, Colonel Wilburforce Buckshot (James Finlayson), who departs for a safari in South Africa. The mansion is to be rented out until his return, but the staff sneak off for a holiday, leaving the house empty. The boys are surrounded by police and have to deceive a honeymooning couple wanting to rent the house. Ollie disguises himself as Buckshot and Stan disguises himself as both butler Hives and chambermaid Agnes.

During a girl-talk scene with Thelma Todd and Stan (disguised as Agnes), Stan's comments get sillier and sillier. The real Colonel returns to fetch his bow and arrows, to find the disorder that had ensued after his departure. Ollie continues his masquerade as Colonel Buckshot to the real colonel, until he sees the portrait on the wall of the real owner. Stan and Ollie escape the ensuing row dressed as a wildebeest on a stolen tandem bicycle. They ride into a railroad tunnel and encounter a train, but emerge riding unicycles.


Stan Laurel as Stan
Oliver Hardy as Ollie
Harry Bernard as policeman
Bobby Burns as bicyclist
Betty Mae Crane as talking titles
Beverly Crane as talking titles
Eddie Dunn as Meadows
James Finlayson as Colonel Wilburforce Buckshot
Charles K. Gerrard as Lord Leopold Ambrose Plumtree
Bill Knight as policeman
Bob Mimford as policeman
Gertrude Sutton as Agnes the maid
Thelma Todd as Lady Plumtree


Unlike other Laurel and Hardy shorts, the technical credits are recited by two girls in usherette outfits. Beverly and Betty Mae Crane performed the "talking titles" for several Roach productions during the 1930–31 season as an experimental alternative to standard title cards.

This was also the first Laurel and Hardy film to feature the well-known Leroy Shield scorings for background music. A couple of previous episodes began experimenting with it, but, beginning with this film, these tunes would be heard regularly in Our Gang, Charley Chase, Boy Friends, and other Hal Roach productions.

No foreign-language versions are known to exist of this short. It was possibly shown with subtitles in non-English-speaking countries, as audiences were critical of the unnatural quality of the alternate versions.

For the scenes inherent in the house was chosen the still existing villa of Peace Awareness Labyrinth & Gardens, at 3500 West Adams Boulevard, Los Angeles, California.

The original version is in black and white. But a coloured version can be found on YouTube.

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