User Reviews (12)

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  • Warning: Spoilers
    Why wasn't Dorothy Lee a bigger star??? Was she so closely associated with Wheeler and Woolsey that when their careers petered out so did hers??? Although her singing was more Helen Kane than Helen Morgan, she was more than just a cute kid. She really livened up Wheeler and Woolsey movies - to a lot of people she was the main attraction.

    There was always a catchy song sung in a novel way in their movies. In this film they are doing a broadcast from a drugstore - Dorothy Lee as Peggy is tipsy from too much lemon syrup (bootleg liquor) and launches into a cute song and dance to "I'm That Way About You After All".

    I love the opening credits over a Disney like animation of a crazy train. Bert Wheeler plays Tommy Tanner and Woolsey plays Egbert G. Higginbotham, a couple of con men who breeze into town. While taking a street car ride they come upon a crying widow who tells them a sad story. Harry Waters (Jason Robards Snr.) is trying to take her drug- store away from her. She has 30 days to pay up and the boys tell him to come back in 30 days - "he should get 60 days".

    Dorothy Lee plays Peggy Norton, the police chief's daughter, who is being romanced by Harry Waters.

    The boys make a big effort to make the drugstore a success - by getting rid of drugs and bringing in meals, ice cream and sodas!!! They also cheer up Mother Talley by doing a routine from their vaudeville act - some of it is funny.

    Jokes and one liners abound in this film:- "Some people call me a wit - they were only half right". "She would be great in the optical dept. - easy on the eyes". Peggy's father growls "Don't Pop me" to which Bert responds "No, let me do it".

    They buy several gallons of lemon syrup - the "new taste sensation" - it is really bootleg liquor and the whole town gets drunk. Everything turns out right in the end but not before Tommy and Egbert are almost arrested as bootleggers and Mother Talley almost ends up in an old folks home.

    Charles Middleton (Ming the Merciless from "Flash Gordon" fame) plays the town miser and is in a very funny sequence that includes mothballs.

    I would heartily recommend this film.
  • Bert and Robert are out of work Vaudeville comedians bumming their way through life when they run into a sad little old lady who owns a down-on-its-luck drug store. They feel sorry for her and decide to help her out, creatively. However a local do-gooder (I never really trusted the type) wants to quickly buy the drugstore for his own purposes. And if you think he looks like Jason Robards Jr., he should because it's his father! Dorothy Lee, the cutest cupie doll since Betty Boop, sweetens this concoction by being not only the police chief's daughter, but the object of both Bert and Mr. Robards Sr.'s affection. Will the boys save Granny? Will Bert & Dorothy sing a duet? Will they all stay sober? See this fun and short comedy for yourself. I recommend it!
  • This is probably Wheeler & Woolsey's best film! It concerns the old stage-play scenerio of an old widow who is being swindled into selling her store & moving into the Old Folks Home.

    W & W meet her just in the nick of time, and turn her failing store into a thriving enterprise. This film is notable for being a "period-piece" -- there are all sorts of references to Prohibition, and the "bad guys" substitute booze for the "lemon soda" in the Old Lady's drugstore (getting everyone drunk & arrested!).

    W & W are in "top form", with plenty of wisecracks, jokes, and funny situations (one of them being on the run from railroad agent Charles Middleton, for riding on a train without a ticket (or money!).

    This film brings back a MUCH simpler, happier, innocent time, and for that reason alone it's worth seeing!

    Norm (PS...I'm a W & W fan, but DON"T see their "Rio Rita"; it's a TERRIBLE film! Abbot & Costello remade it, and the scene that A & C aren't in are terrible, also!).
  • CAUGHT PLASTERED (RKO, 1931), directed by William A. Seiter, is a rare find on television these days. It stars the once popular but highly forgotten comedy team of Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey, Wheeler as the dizzy character with a talent for singing and dancing; Woolsey the one with the glasses, cigar and wisecracks like comedian Groucho Marx, but nobody can top the old Grouch. Wheeler and Woolsey play a couple of drifters who help out an old woman (Lucy Beaumont) save her drug store from a crook (Jason Robards Sr.). Dorothy Lee, who appears in almost all of the W&W comedies, once more plays Bert's love interest. They supply the catchy tune, "I'm That Way About You."

    I enjoy this movie mainly because I remember it being the very first Wheeler and Woolsey comedy I've seen (back on Turner Network Television in 1989). Some people might refuse to watch these guys today on the basis that they don't know who they are. Unfortunately, because their comedies seldom made the late show lineup on commercial television stations back in the 50s, 60s or 70s, W&W never became immortal as the Marx Brothers or Laurel and Hardy, but when given a chance, one can see how good their comic timing can be and how good these two guys are together. True, their latter films in 1936-37 were not up to par, but if anyone wants to see them at their comedic best, watch either CAUGHT PLASTERED or what many consider their funniest outing, HIPS, HIPS HOORAY (1934). For now, CAUGHT PLASTERED is worthy for film buffs of 1930s comedies. Silly to be sure, but quite funny. Great attention grabber: Check out to the opening credits with cartoon train rolling down the track with the wheels in the persona of Woolsey's eyes and glasses, and that wacky music intro. Wheeler and Woolsey were amusing as comedy teams go, and worth rediscovering today.

    Formerly presented on American Movie Classics prior to 2000, it's presently shown, but not often enough, on Turner Classic Movies. (**)
  • Two failed vaudevillians take on the task of helping a sweet old lady save her rundown drugstore from foreclosure. Reinvigorating the establishment with a lunch counter & live radio broadcast, they soon have the business thriving. However, when a crooked businessman attempts to smear the place as a speakeasy, will the boys be able to trace the bootleg liquor, or simply get CAUGHT PLASTERED?

    Wheeler & Woolsey are in top form in this sadly neglected comedy. (Bert Wheeler is the curly-headed fellow, Robert Woolsey is the skinny, bespectacled one.) Always much fun to watch, they've got great dialogue here and they keep it coming rapid fire. Their gags at the expense of the drugstore patrons (society lady, nasty kid, effeminate gentleman, demanding diners) are often hilarious. Once very popular, it's a shame this delightful duo has been virtually forgotten.

    Frequent co-star Dorothy Lee is still kewpie-doll cute. Lucy Beaumont is darling as the little old lady. Jason Robards Sr. is effective as the suave crook.
  • I've seen two movies by this comedy team- one of which I enjoyed and the other I thought was terrible (CRACKED NUTS). CAUGHT PLASTERED is the one liked. There's tons of jokes and gags in this film, some are good for a few good laughs and some for a few groans. In fact, the boys play a couple of comics who failed in their routines and have been chased out of the theatre at numerous locations. So in this sense, I think the script acknowledges that these guys' comedy is not so great, but not bad enough to get some laughs. The story is fairly predictable. The down and out comedy performers out of money hopping trains stop in a town and find an old woman crying on a streetcar, because she's about to lose her drug store to the bank because of slow business. With nothing else to fall back on, the fast talking, cigar chomping, obnoxious Woolsey with this thick, round glasses and his baby faced parter, Wheeler, offer to help her get the drug store up and running again. Will they do this in enough time to save her from losing the store and saving her from having to spend the rest of her life in the "old ladies home?" You'll have to see for yourself. Much of the jokes centers around the boys interactions with the customers, many of which they, especially Woolsey, manage to offend and their getting duped by a crooked businessman/bootlegger (it's still prohibition in 1931)into selling "lemon soda". One of Woolsey's best lines, is "I think someone is passing the flask around here," when they're the ones serving the booze and they don't realize it. I can honestly say that I've never heard drunks singing "London Bridge is Falling Down" until I've seen this movie, but hey it was kind of funny. Dorothy Lee plays Wheeler's romantic interest in the movie and she is a little cutie, despite having a nasal voice. At times, they did get a little too dreamy eyed and sappy around each other, but not to the point of being too annoying. Overall, while I enjoyed this movie and the chemistry between Wheeler and Woolsey, I think their act was kind of second rate compared to others like the Marx Brothers. Still, this movie has the special early 1930s feel to it, is well written and doesn't move slowly like many early sound films, and is quite enjoyable. Check it out if you get the opportunity. 7/10
  • Another big hit for the comedy team of Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey, Caught Plastered is set in a drugstore the boys take on to save a nice old lady from the clutches of the local charming crook, played by Jason Robards Snr.

    All the usual elements are here - wisecracks, double takes, a song and dance number, the perky Dorothy Lee - and the film is really rather good. The plot takes advantage of the fact that Prohibition was still very much in force, and the opening titles have a cartoon train rushing through the landscape.

    Highly recommended.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    After some of the cutest animated film credits ever filmed (visuals of a train moving to the movie's theme song), Wheeler and Woolsey disembark from the train they've snuck a ride on only to be caught by the train company inspector (Charles Middleton). These two con-artists manage to get away, sneak onto a trolley (with the help of an "inspector" button they've found) and meet sweet but sad little old lady Lucy Beaumont. Comforting the old dear, they find out that she's on the verge of loosing her drug store and being forced to go to an old ladies home. Like any other con artists do, Wheeler and Woolsey offer to help her out, get a home made meal and a roof over their head. Before you know it, business is booming, but the villain (Jason Robards Sr.) out to take over the little old ladies' store has sold them alcoholic lemonade which becomes the hit of the neighborhood.

    "I think somebody's passing a flask around here!", wise-cracking Woolsey notes. The local police chief's daughter (Dorothy Lee), now sweet on Wheeler, has drunkenly interrupted Wheeler's radio musical number ("I'm that Way About You After All", the song version of the music we heard over the credits) and Beaumont must quickly make a decision about her future. Will Wheeler and Woolsey prove that Robards deceived them? Most likely, but not before the boys give us their typical routine of pre-code gags, many of which are funny, a few of are not.

    One funny exchange happens between Woolsey and a little boy where Woolsey asks the little boy what he plans to be when he grows up. "I'm not going to be a sissy like you!", the boy states. Much of Wheeler and Woolsey's dialog had to be toned down after the production code came in, which makes this one a bit racier than the later ones. In fact, some of the drug store set skits are similar to what W.C. Fields would later do in his 1934 comedy classic "It's a Gift". The scene where Middleton comes in and the boys must quickly disguise themselves is a truly wonderfully funny moment.

    Beaumont can be a bit cloying as the sweet old lady who seems to cry over the drop of a hat. The scene where the boys put on a little show for her is a bit uncomfortable. I like the feistier old lady who popped up in a similar story in an "Our Gang" short, although I felt sorry for Beaumont's predicament. Robards is a sly villain; All he is missing is a mustache to twirl. There is a really cute scene between Wheeler and Lee involving a phone booth that is strangely romantic. It is ironic that Wheeler and Woolsey were forgotten for decades until their films began popping up on the old version of American Movie Classics and now frequently play on TCM. They prove, like the Peter Allen song, "Everything Old is New Again".
  • MartinHafer23 October 2009
    I have reviewed quite a few Wheeler and Woolsey films and, for the most part, I have been pretty tough on them. I have not particularly enjoyed most of the films, though there have been a few relatively bright spots in their otherwise bleak careers. However, with CAUGHT PLASTERED I have finally found them in a genuinely enjoyable film that I can heartily recommend. It was a very pleasant surprise, as the earlier films seemed to have too much singing and the later ones were just dull. This one works.

    The film begins with the boys out of work. However, they things are even worse for a sweet old lady who they soon meet. It seems that her drug store is about to be taken away, as it's heavily in debt. Wheeler and Woolsey promise her they can turn things around and go to work for her. Shockingly, they do make a genuine success of the store--mostly because they did what makes most drug stores popular--they emphasized everything other than drugs! In fact, they don't even know how to fill out a prescription and in the one case where they actually get one, Woolsey runs to the nearest drug store to get it filled! While there is some singing in the film, it fits into the movie well and doesn't dominate. Wheeler sings a couple cute songs with Dorothy Lee, but they actually work well and are quite catchy. Also, a major plus in this film is that the team actually sticks with a plot!! In so many of their other films, the plot seems best! Overall, the film is polished, funny and makes the best use of the team's talents. Who'd have thought that Wheeler and Woolsey could actually make a very good film?!
  • This may be one of the best of the Wheeler&Woolsey comedies. Their particular brand of broad comedy has regrettably gone out of style in the 21st century and their movies are seldom shown nowadays - except on good old reliable TCM. Like their other films it is loaded with puns and outlandish circumstances and you have to be a fan of that genre, or at least a fan of W&W.

    No need to recap the plot, such as it is. It's the usual improbable scenario, this one about coming to the aid of an old lady with a failing drug store and turning it into a howling success. It features Jason Robards Sr. as the villain, who has an uncanny resemblance to his son, especially the voice and mannerisms. there are even a couple of tuneful but long forgotten songs. Whether you're a fan or not this is a good comedy in any era.

    ******** - Website no longer prints my star ratings.
  • This was only the second Wheeler & Woolsey film I managed to watch when it aired on American Movie Classics back in the '90s (The first was Kentucky Kernels). All I remembered from back then was a duet of Wheeler and Dorothy Lee singing while the latter was drunk. This was made during both Prohibition and before the Production Code was strictly enforced so gags are depicted that probably would have not passed muster just a few years later. It's largely during the last 30 minutes that things really take a hilarious turn but there's plenty of amusing scenes throughout. So on that note, I recommend Caught Plastered.
  • It's prohibition-era and W + W are helping old lady Lucy Beaumont (mother) to run her dug-store so she can turn a profit, pay her rent and avoid going into an old people's home. W + W don't know anything about running a drugstore but they make a success of things and introduce a food and drink counter which takes off. Jason Robards (Harry) is the bad guy who wants the shop to fail and he colludes with a colleague to provide W + W with lemon syrup to serve to customers. The lemon syrup is, in fact, alcohol. This is not good news in times of prohibition and W + W are now operating a 'Speakeasy' which gets busted after a tip-off to Police Chief De Witt Jenkins from the bad man Robards.

    Sometimes the film is a bit funny but mostly it's not. You watch in anticipation of something funny that might happen, but it mostly doesn't happen, I'm afraid to say. The film gets pulled up into the "ok" category by the song performed by Wheeler and Dorothy Lee (Peggy). I wish there had been a proper dance number between them. W + W also perform a few brief dance steps together and it's these musical interludes that make the film an ok experience. They really needed more dance numbers in this film - Dorothy was wasted coz she can dance.

    As for prohibition - it's a tough call to outright ban something. I think the obvious choices would include violence and killing but how about including those people who encourage singers to do that vocal gymnastics nonsense and make male singers intonate like babies when they vocalize!!! Yep, get those time-wasters off the planet ....................and pass round the lemon syrup....alcoholic, of course.