Imitation Slap Shtick

Jewdar has never been a fan of the Farrelly Brothers, finding that brand of humor (“Look, that guy’s retarded!”), to be a bit go–, well, let’s just say, not Jewish. When we heard they were making a Three Stooges movie, we weren’t thrilled, but figured it was maybe just a biopic. There’s a part of us that feels if only we’d known the terrible truth, we could have done something about it. Sadly, we were wrong, and it’s much too late to do anything about it now.

Far from being a biopic, the film is instead a horrid re-imagining of Three Stooges humor. The C-listers involved aren’t playing the actors who starred in the Three Stooges, they are actually playing three Stooges. Let’s leave aside the fact that none of the actors playing Dr. Howard, Fine and Howard are Members of the Tribe. Forget the fact that in the movie, the Stooges are raised by the Sisters of Mercy Catholic Orphanage (and no, we don’t care that the chief nun, Sister Mary Mengele, is played by Larry David.) We just find the whole concept enraging. There’s nothing new, or creative or interesting-–it’s just a poor rehashing of great original material. Now, some might argue that if we love the Three Stooges (and we do) we should like this movie. But we don’t even like Shemp, Joe, or Curly Joe–-as far as we’re concerned, if it’s not Curly, it’s not the Three Stooges.

To watch a film that’s derivative of a superbly funny classic, just isn’t the same. So what’s our kosher beef at the end of the day? They are calling this massacre a Three Stooges movie, when it’s really just the cinematic equivalent of somebody saying, “This comedian was so funny…” and then proceeding to repeat the bit. Like that, we presume that the Farrelly take on the Three Stooges will be the sort of thing that leaves everybody feeling awkward, uncomfortable, and decidedly unamused.

What do you think?

About The Author


The Tel Aviv-born, Milwaukee-bred Jewdar has a bachelors' from the University of Wisconsin, a Masters from NYU, and an Honorable Discharge from the US Army, where he spent two years as an infantryman in the 101st Airborne Division. He's the co-author of "The Big Book of Jewish Conspiracies", the Humor Editor of Heeb Magazine, and a watcher of TV. Smarter than most funny people, funnier than most smart people, he lives on the Lower East Side with his wife and two sons.

One Response

  1. Jeff Friedman

    I disagree with your opinion here, but I do respect your military service. Mostly, I have to question you because you’re a Badger. Anyway, just because the Farrelly’s aren’t Jews, and the actors playing the Stooges aren’t Jews, doesn’t mean that they don’t “get it.” I laughed my tuchus off at the trailer that you posted. Do you really want a biopic about the sad lives of these once hilarious Vauvillian comedians? I don’t. If you want sad, go watch Holocaust movies; curl up in front of the fireplace to Sophie’s Choice. Incidentally, Norman Jewison, not a Jew despite his name, directed Fiddler on the Roof, the quintessential Jewish musical based on Shalom Aleichem’s stories of Eastern European Jewry during the Czarist regimes. Did he get it wrong? I don’t think so. Respect.


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