Production Information
Rockin’ Thru The Rockies
Studio: Columbia
Short Number: 45
Release Date: March 8, 1940
Running Time: 17:24

“I’m going crazy!” “Don’t brag… we’re nuts already!”
(Tim Ryan & Moe)

Short Take 

The Stooges are guides (circa late 1800s), who are helping a trio christened “Nell’s Belles” travel across the Rocky Mountains to San Francisco, the location of their next performance. While preparing some corned beef, a group of Indians urges them to get off their land as soon as possible. Since Curly scared off the horses earlier, the group is stuck there for the night.

During the night, Moe and Larry angrily tell Curly to sleep by himself because he is barking like a dog in his sleep. Unfortunately, snow falls while they sleep. They awake to discover a bear has devoured their food supply, so the three hapless guides try unsuccessfully to catch some fish in a nearby frozen lake. The fishing expedition is interrupted by Nell (Kathryn Sheldon), who discovers the Belles — Lorna Gray, Dorothy Appleby and Linda Winters — have been kidnapped by the Indians. The Belles manage to escape, and the troupe leaves the Indians’ land quickly.


While the bulk of Rockin’ Thru The Rockies suggests that The Stooges are failing miserably, when all is said and done they do shoot several ducks, ward off a bear catch a large fish (besides the one that looks like Moe), save the women from the hostile Escrow Indian tribe, and sail off on their prairie schooner.

Rockin’ Thru The Rockies is characteristic Jules White with wall-to-wall gags, the fifth consecutive Stooge film he has directed.

At the end of Oily to Bed, Oily to Rise Curly winked at the camera. Here Curly says “That’s enough” to Moe in his natural voice to break the barrier between the audience and the film.

“Ship Ahoy! Forward on the poop deck, shiver my timbers-“

“Hey that’s enough! Come on!”

Cast & Crew

Directed byJules White
Produced byJules White
Written byClyde Bruckman
StarringMoe Howard
Larry Fine
Curly Howard
Lorna Gray
Kathryn Sheldon
Bud Jamison
Dick Curtis
Dorothy Appleby
Linda Winters
CinematographyHenry Freulich
Edited byArt Seid

Rockin’ Thru The Rockies Trivia

  • After the snow collapses the tent-like structure from the set of “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” (in which the troupe performs in a traveling show), Curly falls through a curtain, lands on the girls in bed, and says, “The walls of Jericho collapsed.” This is a reference to a scene in Columbia’s It Happened One Night, where the flimsy barricade set up between Claudette Colbert and Clark Gable in a motor lodge was called the “walls of Jericho.”
  • This is the fifth time The Stooges have been hired as scouts or sleuths (Horses’ Collars, Uncivil Warriors, Goofs and Saddles, We Want Our Mummy).
  • This is the first Stooge film with a bear in it.
  • In this short Curly also briefly chants, “Give ’em the axe, give ’em the axe; right in the neck, right in the neck” which is a reference both to the Stanford Axe as well as the chant traditionally shouted by Stanford during the Big Game, which was popular in southern California during the early part of the 20th century.
  • The conclusion of this film is reminiscent of Early American folklore as the Stooges leave Indian territory a la Windwagon Smith.
  • Dorothy Appleby, a former Miss Maine who would appear six more Stooge films, worked with Moe and Curly in the 1934 MGM short Jailbirds of Paradise.

Production Notes

  • Rockin’ Thru the Rockies was filmed on November 7-11, 1939.
  •  The film title is often mistaken for the 1945 feature film Rockin’ in the Rockies starring the Stooges.