Disorder in the Court
|Disorder in the Court|
|Directed by||Preston Black|
|Produced by||Jules White|
|Written by||Felix Adler|
James C. Morton
|Cinematography||Benjamin H. Kline|
|Edited by||William A. Lyon|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
|May 30, 1936 (U.S.)|
The Stooges are key witnesses at a murder trial. Their friend and colleague, Gail Tempest (Suzanne Kaaren), is a dancer at the Black Bottom cafe where the Stooges are musicians. She is accused of killing Kirk Robin (a play on "Who Killed Cock Robin?").
When Curly is called to the witness stand, he is nowhere to be found. The defense attorney (Bud Jamison) goes out into the hall only to find the Stooges playing jacks and tic-tac-toe simultaneously on the floor. After considerable mutual frustration, the court finally swears in Curly, who begins to describe the events that took place on the night of the murder. He offers to show the court exactly what happened, and the Stooges break into their musical routine, with Larry on violin, Moe harmonica, and Curly on spoons. Gail Tempest shrugs off her coat and reveals her dancer costume, to the great surprise of the jury.
The act ends when Larry mistakes a toupée for a tarantula; Moe subsequently takes the guard's gun and starts shooting the toupée, causing pandemonium in the court. After everything is brought under control, Moe and Curly re-enact the actual murder (with Curly on the receiving end). Moe then looks at the parrot, who was at the murder scene, and sees a note tied to the parrot's foot. He opens the parrot cage, and the parrot flies out. The Stooges eventually capture the bird by shooting water at it through a fire hose. Moe then reads the letter out loud and reveals that it is a confession from the real murderer, Buck Wing, which proves Gail's innocence. The note also said that Buck Wing will disappear. Just when they are going to get their picture taken at the front page, the water hose explodes, causing everyone to get wet.
The title Disorder in the Court is a play on the stereotypical judge's cry, "Order in the court!"
A colorized version of this film was released in 2006 as part of the DVD collection "Stooges on the Run."
This is the first Stooge short in which Curly is spelled "C-U-R-L-Y" in the opening titles instead of the previous "C-U-R-L-E-Y." The title card also has the Stooges inverted reading from left to right, Curly-Larry-Moe, as opposed to Moe-Larry-Curly in previous shorts, effectively giving Curly "top billing." This change in the title card coincides with the refined and more familiar Columbia Pictures "torch lady" image, with a shimmering light instead of the primitive animation of light rays in the previous version. In addition, the "Columbia" theme now uses a more upbeat theme, featuring a brass introduction.
Disorder in the Court is one of four Stooge shorts that fell into the public domain after the copyright lapsed in the 1960s (the other three being Malice in the Palace, Brideless Groom, and Sing a Song of Six Pants). As such, these four shorts frequently appear on cheaply produced DVD or video compilations.
In popular culture
The perp is a dancer named Buck Wing, a reference to the buck-and-wing dance common in vaudeville and minstrel shows.
The classic 'swearing in' ('Take off your hat!,' 'Raise your right hand,' 'Judgy wudgy') routine was borrowed nearly verbatim from Buster Keaton's Sidewalks of New York, which was directed by Stooge veteran and producer Jules White.
- Solomon, Jon (2002). The Complete Three Stooges: The Official Filmography and Three Stooges Companion. Comedy III Productions, Inc. p. 96. ISBN 0-9711868-0-4.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Disorder in the Court.|
- Disorder in the Court at the Internet Movie Database
- Disorder in the Court at AllMovie
- Disorder in the Court is available for free download at the Internet Archive