Title: Dizzy Doctors
Short Number: 21
Release Date: March 19, 1937
Running Time: 17:41
“Brighto! Brighto! It makes old bodies new! We’ll sell a million bottles, Woob, woob, woob, woob, woob, woob, woob!” – (Curly)
Dizzy Doctors Short Take
The snoring Stooges are awakened near midday by their wives, who demand that they find jobs. The boys soon stumble on company president Dr. Bright (Horace Murphy), who is in desperate need of salesmen for his new product called Brighto, which has the tagline “Brighto: makes old bodies new.” Thinking the liquid is polish, the Stooges take to the streets where they eagerly demonstrate Brighto for prospective customers, but application of the product damages a policeman’s (Bud Jamison) sleeve by Larry, destroys another man’s shoe by Moe, and ultimately removes the paint from a man’s (Vernon Dent) new car. The angry owner of the car joins with the policeman in hot pursuit of the salesmen.
On the run, the Stooges return to Dr. Bright’s office to complain that the polish is so bad they “almost got pinched”. Dr. Bright admonishes the Stooges, telling them it is medicine, not polish. However, he still agrees to give them another chance as salesmen. Rejuvenated, the boys work their way into Los Arms Hospital and try to sell Brighto to the patients. Eventually, they enter the superintendent’s office to try to make a sale, but the superintendent is the same man whose car’s paint job was ruined, and another chase ensues. The Stooges try to escape into an elevator, but the man is inside, so the Stooges close the door on him and send him to the top floor by turning the elevator arrow. The boys then make a hasty exit by riding a hospital gurney into the street, where they use a blanket as a sail. After causing an auto accident, they run home, jump through a window into their bed, and resume sleeping.
Dizzy Doctors Perspective
It is too often forgotten that The Three Stooges were actors. But they were entirely convincing as actors playing Stooges, particularly as a trio. They developed a large vocabulary of gestures, expressions, and postures, perfected their triadic timing, and so, armed, they enlivened the scripts Columbia studios provided them eight times a year for one-quarter of a century. In Dizzy Doctors, after they are threatened by their wives, they obtain employment as Brighto salesmen and proceed with tremendous enthusiasm. They run about, the streets shouting and harassing anyone and everyone, proving that they are indeed “…three of the best salesmen who ever saled.”
The time spent in their metamorphosing from sleeping bums to beleaguered husbands to Brighto salesmen to fugitives is scant nine minutes. Such condensed narrative development, both intensified by and expanded with verbal and physical gags and slapstick punctuation, makes The Stooges films unparalleled in the history of the cinema.
Dizzy Doctors Cast & Crew
|Directed by||Del Lord|
|Produced by||Jules White|
|Written by||Charles Nelson|
Jack “Tiny” Lipson
James C. Morton
|Cinematography||Benjamin H. Kline|
|Edited by||Charles Nelson|
Dizzy Doctors Trivia
- The Stooges try to sell their medicine in the Los Arms Hospital; this is the same hospital seen in Men in Black.
- This is the first of three Stooge shorts with the word “dizzy” in the title.
- When Moe hits each of the skulls, in turn, each sounds a different note. The tones are a parody of the G-E-C pattern used for the NBC Chimes.
- A colorized version of this film was released in 2006. It was part of the DVD collection entitled “Stooges on the Run”.
- 1937 was a turning point in US economic history between the Great Depression and ‘prosperity’. Separating The Stooges into individual Brighto salesmen uses the same spatial arrangement as the two mid-Depression films, Punch Drunks and Hoi Polloi.
- Turning the hospital P.A. system into a radio broadcast was appropriate in late 1936, when soap operas (Moe’s Brighto ad), prize fights (Curly’s lines), and variety shows (Larry’s crooning) were regular broadcast formats. The next year radio quiz shows would become popular, whence Healthy, Wealthy and Dumb. The voice-over used when Harry Arms recognizes The Stooges in his office (“Get ’em, boys!”) is not Vernon Dent’s voice.
- Filming of Dizzy Doctors was completed between December 9 and 12, 1936.
- The footage of The Stooges sailing on a gurney through the city streets would be reused in From Nurse to Worse.
The Three Stooges on Location at The Columbia Ranch
- All of the outdoor scenes in Dizzy Doctors were filmed on the Columbia Ranch. In the opening scene, Larry, Moe and Curly run around the exterior and interior of the Star Drug Co. as they attempt to sell Brighto. The Star Drug Co. is one of the most recognizable structures on the Columbia Ranch, located on the corner of Modern Stree and New York Street. With its unique curved windows and facade, the building can be seen in many films as well as The Three Stooges shorts.