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The Three Stooges Collection, Vol. 5: 1946-1948

161 customer reviews

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(Mar 17, 2009)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

This fifth collection of The Three Stooges, which features 25 digitally remastered shorts from 1946-1948, marks the end of Curly's career with the Stooges and the return of original Stooge Shemp. Curly suffered a stroke on the final day of filming HALF-WITS HOLIDAY and retired at age 43. Moe realized there was only one person who could fill baby brother Curly's shoes: his older brother Shemp (who, ironically, Curly had replaced in 1932). The Three Stooges were born in 1925 when Moe and Shemp met Larry Fine. But the 1930's Shemp left to pursue a film career in Hollywood. By the time Moe called in 1946, he was starring in films with the likes of W.C. Fields, John Wayne and Abbott and Costello. But he accepted Moe's offer, and the original Three Stooges reunited. Shemp's first short upon his return was FRIGHT NIGHT . And Curly did recover enough to make an appearance in HOLD THAT LION, but his health continued to deteriorate and he unfortunately passed away in 1952 at age 48. The Three St

Fans of the Three Stooges tend to fall into two camps--those that love Shemp Howard, and those that, quite simply, do not, but one might believe that the pristine presentation of the 25 postwar shorts gathered in The Three Stooges Collection Volume 5 will sway even the most ardent anti-Shemp viewer to reversing his position. Shemp’s involvement with the Stooges goes back to their days in vaudeville with Ted Healy, whose questionable business practices forced him to leave the act and seek stardom on his own, which he achieved in one-reelers and features throughout the ‘30s and ‘40s. He returned to the fold after brother Curly suffered a series of strokes, which forced him to bow out of all shorts after 1947’s "Half-Wits Holiday" (on Disc One). Shemp became a full-time Stooge again in the trio’s 98th short, "Fright Night," and almost immediately established his persona in the group--a blend of Curly’s volcanic man-child and an easily amused goof whose skewed sense of humor drew the wrath of Moe. Whether his performance will win new converts remains to be seen, but some of his best work with the Stooges are compiled on this two-disc set, including "Brideless Groom" (Shemp must get married in 24 hours or lose his inheritance; Stooge supporting player Emil Sitka’s oft-quoted line, "Hold hands, you lovebirds!" from this short is overheard in Pulp Fiction); "Sing a Song of Six Pants" (the boys attempt to corral a fugitive bank robber for the reward money); "Shivering Sherlocks" and "Hot Scots" (two of their best haunted house scenarios, with the hunchback Angel in "Sherlocks" a bizarre highlight); and "Hold That Lion," which features the final screen appearance of Curly Howard in a surprise cameo. As with all previous Three Stooges Collection DVDs, Volume 5 includes a number of shorts that have never been released to disc, including "Lion," "All Gummed Up" and "Pardon My Clutch." --Paul Gaita

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Curly Howard, Larry Fine, Moe Howard, Shemp Howard
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Color, Full Screen, NTSC, Original recording remastered
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 17, 2009
  • Run Time: 432 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (161 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,463 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Three Stooges Collection, Vol. 5: 1946-1948" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

93 of 95 people found the following review helpful By Mike Fontanelli on February 13, 2009
Format: DVD
There was only one Curly, of course - but the vastly underrated Shemp Howard was surely the next best thing, and a class act all the way. Not many fans know that Shemp took a 50% salary cut from his successful solo career to help out his kid brother, Moe. He'd been earning twice as much for years as a busy freelance character actor, in memorable cameo bits supporting W.C. Fields, Abbott & Costello, Olsen & Johnson - and just about everyone else in Hollywood. (And frankly, having a much easier go of it. Unfortunately for posterity, the 52 year-old Shemp was already past his prime as a knockabout comic by the time he gamely returned to the team in 1947.)

But game he was, luckily for us. Shemp was blessed with an unforgettable, once-in-a-lifetime face that was a gift from the comedy gods. Displaying the seasoned comic instincts of a veteran clown, Shemp came equipped with a wonderful natural delivery, perfect ensemble timing, and a hilarious arsenal of quirky sounds, twitches and classic pratfalls. Out of altruism and family loyalty, he made the devil's choice - and three generations of comedy fans can be grateful for a noble and selfless gesture.

More Shemp facts: Shemp had virtually created the Stooges' trademark style of comedy with Moe and Ted Healy in vaudeville before Curly or Larry Fine ever joined the act. Simply put (for the benefit of some uninformed reviewers), without the vitally important Shemp there never would have been any Three Stooges in the first place - which makes undermining his legacy all the more pointless. He was also an uncredited gag writer on some early Curly shorts, such as "Pardon My Scotch," and in 1944 he took over for an ailing Curly during the Stooges' many live performance appearances.

Ah, but was he FUNNY?
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70 of 75 people found the following review helpful By SS77 on January 6, 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
While this collection of shorts fails to measure up to the ones that preceded them, this is an important point in the career of The Three Stooges.

The shorts on this volume represent the height of Curly's sad demise - by 1946, he was very ill and ultimately never returned to the act on a full-time basis after suffering a stroke during the filming of Half Wits Holiday. These final Curly shorts are among the worst of his Stooge years but for very understandable reasons. He had a brief cameo in 1947's Hold That Lion, which is featured on this set.

When Curly couldn't continue as a member of the team, Shemp returned and would stay with them until his own death in 1955. Shemp is criminally underrated by the average fan. He wasn't Curly, but Shemp was a very gifted comic in his own right. Curly and Shemp were two very different comics but both excelled at their type of comedy. Give Shemp a shot.
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42 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Stooge Lover on January 8, 2009
Format: DVD
Most people don't realize that Shemp Howard (Moe's older brother)was the "first" third stooge with Moe & Larry. He quit to strike out on his own right before the Stooges started making their famous short films.

Moe then got his younger brother Jerome to join them. He shaved his head and called himself Curly. He spoke in a high falsetto voice because his normal voice sounded too much like Moe.

Curly frequently forgot his lines and that's where his famous "woo woo woo" came from. He would blurt that out when he forgot his lines and then ad lib it!

While not as funny as Shemp's "ee bee bee bee", it still made him famous.

After Curly's demise, Moe called up Shemp and he returned. His style of humor was legendary. He had done some work with Abbott and Costello. He was so much funnier than them that Costello saw to it that most of Shemp's work ended up on the cutting room floor.

Curly did a nice job filling in for Shemp but it was great when the original finally returned and left us with so many gems!
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Format: DVD
Classic slapstick comedy at its best. The Three Stooges will always be remembered and never forgotten!

I grew up watching "THE THREE STOOGES", during a time when classic B&W shorts were shown on television and I could remember coming home every lunch time to visit my grandparents during high school and catching the series on television and just enjoying the zany adventures of Moe, Curly and Larry plus Shemp who would highlight "THE THREE STOOGES" during the Columbia Pictures years (1934-1959).

There were a total of 190 shorts created for Columbia Pictures and in this fifth volume of "THE THREE STOOGES COLLECTION", the following episodes are featured:


1. Beer Barrel Polecats
2. A Bird in the Head
3. Uncivil Warbirds
4. Three Troubledoers
5. Monkey Businessmen
6. Three Loan Wolves
7. G.I. Wanna Home
8. Rhythm and Weep
9. Three Little Pirates


1. Ball-Wits Holiday
2. Fright Night
3. Out West
4. Hold that Lion
5. Bridless Groom
6. Sing a Song of Six PAnts
7. All Gummed Up


1. Shivering Sherlocks
2. Pardon My Clutch
3. Squareheads of the Round Table
4. Fiddlers Three
5. The Hot Scots
6. Heavenly Daze
7. I'm a Monkey's Uncle
8. Mummy's Dummies
9. Crime on Their Hands

Within these three years, there are some definite classics that I was pleased to see in this collection.

A few of my favorites from this fifth volume include "Beer Barrel Polecats". Moe, Curly and Larry decide to make beer during prohibition and in the process get in trouble and end up in jail.
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