on October 17, 2002
Perhaps I'm a bit biased here, but this film was my first exposure to Abbott and Costello, and I've loved them every since. My parents bought the VHS tape of this when I was very young and I was instantly mesmerised -- those guys were the funniest team of comedians I'd ever seen. They still are, really.
In retrospect, this may not be one of their greatest films (it's not on par with Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, for instance), but it's a fun retelling of the classic Jack and the Beanstalk story, casting Lou as Jack and Bud as the crooked butcher who swaps him magic beans for a cow. Transplanting the boys into the fanciful setting works, and although some of the stuntwork and sets seemed pretty threadbare at times the story and the comedy still click well. This is also one of the few films the boys ever made that could be classified as a musical.
For completists who love Abbott and Costello and are still impatiently waiting for the rest of their films to come out on DVD, this is a must-have. Also recommended for folks with kids -- it's a wonderful movie for the young.
on April 14, 2002
You know the story... the film is a faithful retelling. Costello dreams himself (as Jack) and fellow movie characters into the story. The narrative device recalls Dorothy's dream in The Wizard of OZ; it plausibly lands Lou and Bud in character. Be advised that in addition to annoying film artifacts, my Madacy disc was defective (a series of small depressed circles in a ring concentric with the spindle hole) and in the Passport edition, the video is worse still and then is poorly synched with the audio! Stay away from both if you can find better transfers.
on May 1, 2002
This was a gift. I knew enough to stay away from Madacy products. The quality of the print is just awful with lines, missing frames, terrible contrast, fuzzy focus, washed out color, and the worst sound I 've ever heard on a DVD. I wish I could recommend a good copy of this movie but I don't know where to get one since it's public domain.