A mild-mannered stage comedian is most unhappily swept up into the World War One Army and shipped off to France.
Fast-moving & fun, SONS O' GUNS is another example of the comedy picture that Warner Bros. was so expert at producing during the 1930's. Casts & plots could be shuffled endlessly, with very predictable results. While this assembly line approach created few classics, audience enjoyment could usually be assured.
Putty-faced comic Joe E. Brown dominates the film with his special brand of wacky humor. Given a good script, Brown could be a very funny fellow indeed and he lives up to his reputation here, his tremendous mouth and mischievous eyes always on the move, waiting to signal the next wisecrack. Many of his jokes vigorously push the boundaries of the Production Code, which only adds to their amusement.
Pretty Joan Blondell, playing an innocent French miss (with a strangely Russian-sounding accent), very much takes second fiddle to Brown, letting him dominate nearly all of their scenes. And even her limited screen time has to be shared with Beverly Roberts as Brown's disaffected fiancée & Wini Shaw as one of the women out of his past. Still, Blondell is always lovely to look at and the film is fortunate to have her.
Brown's true costar in the movie is Eric Blore, very droll as the respectful British valet who becomes his employer's tough-talking sergeant in the war's front lines. The very different acting styles of these two gentlemen mesh quite well on screen, and, particularly in their first scenes, provide the viewer with some very enjoyable moments.
Movie mavens will recognize Mischa Auer in a small role as a jovial German spy.
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