The Three Stooges (2012) – Review

3 Stars


The advertising material for The Three Stooges movie, lovingly proclaims ‘All pain, no brain’, but that doesn’t hold true to this smart and heartfelt tribute to the bumbling trio. There is an overall pleasant vibe that radiates off the screen during the film’s brief 90 minute running-time. As a narrative device the Farrlley brothers, along with co-author, Mike Cerrone, have concocted their screenplay into three episodes, each with an intro and title, keeping in tune with the properties’ origin as a comedic serial show. I was not sure if The Three Stooges routine could play in today’s world, but Bobby & Peter Farrelly have nailed it, with perhaps the best treatment possible of a series that ran nearly 80 years ago. Most of the enjoyment to be had in the picture is the Stooges themselves, Sean Hayes, Chris Diamantopoulos and Will Sasso are perfectly cast and have honed their act to such perfection it outdoes mimicry and leaves its own indelible impression.

The first third of the picture takes place at an orphanage and showcases Larry, Curly and Moe’s upbringing. While also chronicling the enormous amounts of pain (inadvertently) inflicted on nun Mary (a very recognizable Larry David). After 35 years of being holed up together inside the protective community within the orphanage, the boys set out to raise enough money to save the place from foreclosure. When the trio reach the big city looking for work, they are tricked into agreeing to kill the husband of a two-timing, scheming wife so she can collect her spouse’s large fortune. Of course things do not go as planed and the hijacks and physical abuse ensue. Including Moe’s brief celebrity as a cast-mate on the Jersey Shore reality show.

There are visual gags, slapstick comedy and puns galore, my favorite being the law offices of Kickham, Harter & Indagroyne. These touches are mischievous reminders that the intelligence behind the camera is evident even when the onscreen characters are punching one another in the genitals until operatic screams are let loose. I think you will know from that last sentence if The Three Stooges is your kind of movie, truth in reporting persuades me to confess I laughed each time a shot to the nuts was registered. Essentially this is a movie aimed squarely at the family audience and I believe most members of your household will find some aspect of The Three Stooges appealing. Do not miss the amusing end credits disclaimer scene.

Director: Bobby & Peter Farrelly
Stars: Sean Hayes, Chris Diamantopoulos, Will Sasso

4 thoughts on “The Three Stooges (2012) – Review

  1. I am a fan of the original Three Stooges and wasn’t sure what to expect from this film. The plot had little originality to it but the humor was everywhere. The physical abuse, body language, and even some of the scenes mimicked the original serials and then some. Sean Hayes, Chris Diamantopoulos and Will Sasso portrayed the Stooges perfectly. I laughed out loud several times while watching this.

    I think anyone who liked the original trio will enjoy this film. I hope there are sequels to follow.

    1. Mike, Having no affinity with the source material I went into this picture somewhat skeptical. I was almost immediately won over by the warmness of the storyline and the remarkable job all three leads do. I hope there are more adventures in store of these guys. Color me impressed.

  2. In a time where movies like ‘Jackass’ are considered funny, it’s sad to see films like this shunned. Whether they were hitting each other, flying across the room, or making their well known woop wooping, the Three Stooges always made me laugh. Some of my Dish coworkers who saw the movie say that it wasn’t as good as the old shows. I haven’t seen the Three Stooges yet, but I would like to form my own opinion on the movie, so I added it to my Blockbuster @Home queue, and I should get it in a few days. I can’t wait to see it!

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