12 November 2016 | bkoganbing
Inspiration for The Great Race
The Tony Curtis/Jack Lemmon classic The Great Race was dedicated to Mr. Laurel and Mr. Hardy and now after seeing Rupert Of Heehaw I can see why. A number of silent screen comics Laurel among them did short subjects that satirized some of the big box office films of the day. This film we are told is a sequel to The Prisoner Of Zenda.
In The Great Race there is an extended sequence where Jack Lemmon plays both the villainous Professor Fate and the perpetually inebriated monarch of a Zenda like Ruritanian country. He had to have seen this silent short subject and got down Stan Laurel's body movements to uncanny perfection. Stan is the king and his lookalike cousin. Ronald Colman and Stewart Granger he wasn't, but he was a Lemmon.
Playing the title role however was Laurel&Hardy perennial foil James Finlayson ever foiled in his dastardly attempts to seize power.
A few good laughs were seized however.