The Best Old Movies on a Big Screen This Week: NYC Repertory Cinema Picks, April 1-7

04/01/2015 9:00 AM |

two tars laurel and hardy

Two Tars (1928)
Directed by James Parrott
Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy matched each other onscreen with complementary clumsiness. The thin weepy-faced one, when made to perform functional tasks, lived at risk of falling over and cracking like porcelain; his big bullying comrade strove to immaculately manipulate each of his own individual motions, only to then futilely watch other people lay havoc before his eyes. The two comedians worked separately until chance led them to team at Hal Roach Studios, a veritable factory for comic shorts. Their silent Two Tars (whose director also made several of their other best films) presents them as sailors on shore leave who pick up a pair of girls and then wreak roadside destruction alongside them in an effort to return to their fleet in time. As angered drivers of stalled cars surround the quartet, each man propels the other to greater, messier heights. A recent 35mm preservation of Two Tars will conclude an evening of Roach shorts, with two solo Laurel films and two solo Hardy ones preceding it; all five films will screen with live piano accompaniment by Ben Model. Aaron Cutler (Apr 4, 2:30pm as part of a Laurel & Hardy program in the “Silent Clowns” film series, at the Bruno Walter Auditorium)