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Film / The Three Stooges: The Movie

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Directed by the Farrelly Brothers (Dumb and Dumber, There's Something About Mary, Shallow Hal), The Three Stooges: The Movie is a feature film adaptation based on the titular comedy team; with Chris Diamantopoulos, Sean Hayes, and Will Sasso playing the trio of Moe, Larry and Curly respectively. In the film, the Stooges were sent to Sisters of Mercy Orphanage, where they later on live in for 35 years with barely any chance for adoption. Come present day, their home is being foreclosed, so they plan to save it in whatever way to raise $830,000. Unlike Columbia Pictures that distributed the original shorts, 20th Century Fox distributes this movie.

The film was released on April 13, 2012, after many years in Development Hell. A sequel is in development, as well as a prequel.

The Three Stooges: The Movie has examples of:

  • Accidental Hero: The trio in the whole plot.
  • Age Lift: Larry, when it comes to being portrayed by the 41-year-old Sean Hayes. He looks older than both Moe and Curly, whose actors were both 36. The original Larry was 5 years younger than Moe and just a year older than Curly.
  • Alliterative Name: Mac's name is Mac Miosky.
  • Amoral Attorney: Mr. Harter, who was sleeping with his son's wife and planning to kill him.
  • Animals Lack Attributes: Averted with the lion, whose balls are even used in a joke.
  • Astonishingly Appropriate Interruption: Moe gets one in when Larry and Curly tell him Lydia is actually Teddy's wife.
    Moe: No wonder she wanted us to smother him in his sleep! I knew I smelled a-
    JWoww: A rat!
    [Nippy wandering around]
  • Balloonacy: Played straight when a little girl gets lifted by a bunch of balloons.
  • Big Damn Movie: In a sense. The Stooges leave their home to raise up the money to save it. During the movie, a murder plot is involved. Something that one wouldn't expect much in the original shorts.
  • The Big Guy: Curly is the fattest and tallest of the Stooges. In this movie, it's taken up to eleven, mostly because his actor Will Sasso is 6'3", dwarfing the original Curly's height of 5'5"''
  • Brick Joke: This film has a lot.
    • The arrow Larry shoots.
    • "Donut remover".
    • The sledgehammer in the bucket.
    • The lion seen on TV.
    • The policeman who had his chest ironed.
    • Curly eating lobster with "pesto-bismol".
    • "I told you there's too much iron in the water!"
    • Mr. Harter thinking Larry has cancer from his haircut.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Mac was hit by the bus and run over by a street cleaner, then shot in the leg with an arrow, and yet not a single ounce of blood. Although he later shows a little blood after he was mauled by the lion.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Mac. He gets hit by a bus, sucked into a floor cleaner, stomped by a kid on a pogo stick, hit by Larry's arrow, was stuck in a full body cast, got blasted by dynamite, attacked by a lion in the zoo, and much more.
    • Sister Mary-Menglele could also count, as she constantly gets injured due to the Stooges' antics.
  • The Cameo: This movie has Jennifer Hudson, Isaiah Mustafa!... and Jersey Shore?
  • Carrying a Cake: The massive anniversary cake for Teddy's party gets utterly demolished after a little girl falls directly on top of it.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The seed money of $72, which the Stooges use to open up their Salmon farm.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Teddy in the movie. His father, too.
  • Crosscast Role: One of the nuns is Larry David.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Normally, this role belongs to Larry, but Moe takes it here. That said, he did have his moments in the original shorts as well.
  • Deconstruction:
    • Years of having to pay off the Stooges' antics means that the orphanage can no longer afford medical insurance, and is otherwise pretty much bankrupt.
    • For years, Moe's abuse is usually dismissed and played for laughs by his brothers, who are comically immune to his attacks. However, once he's on Jersey Shore, Snooki and the other cast members are actually horrified and openly call his antics "assault" and would have him arrested if it weren't for intervention from the studio.
  • Disguised in Drag: While Larry disguises as the doctor, Moe and Curly disguise as respectively as brunette and blonde nurse.
  • D.I.Y. Disaster: The Stooges were told to fix the bell to the orphanage last week. Ending up with Larry pulling its tag off with the bell falling on Sister Mary-Menglele's head.
  • Do Not Try This at Home: The movie ends with this message from two guys who are most definitely Bobby and Peter Farrelly. Definitely.
  • Downer Ending: Narrowly averted in the ending.
  • A Family Affair: Lydia is revealed to be having an affair with Teddy's adopted father.
  • The Film of the Series: To the original shorts.
  • Fish out of Water: The Stooges never left the orphanage until they were adults and had no knowledge of things like iPhones, Facebook and Twitter.
    • Literally when they farm salmon...on a golf course!
  • Friend to All Children: The Stooges get on great with kids and would never harm one...intentionally.
  • Groin Attack: A lion gets hit in the balls by a flying peanut (as a result of Curly and Larry trying to save a Dolphin when they accidentally clog its blowhole with said peanut). What follows is it mauls Mac in a blind and hurt rage.
    • Another one occurs later when Moe, in retaliation to one of Larry's puns, shoves a lobster down his pants and it starts clawing at his privates, with one pinch resulting in Instant Soprano.
  • Hard Head: Curly, true to form. At one point Moe runs a chainsaw directly over Curly's head... and the chainsaw breaks.
  • Homage: The film somewhat serves as this. With many references to previous shorts and three actors as the titular trio...
  • Hunting "Accident": Teddy mentions that his adoptive mother died of a hunting accident. It was caused by his father who wanted her money.
  • Infantilization Retaliation: Curly, dressed as a nurse, is about to change the diapers from baby triplets. He tries to scratch one of their chins, but the baby bites his finger.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Sister Mary-Menglele had every right to say the Stooges were responsible for causing several repercussions at the orphanage throughout the past 30 years from their constant stupidity and to say it was their fault.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Moe. It's even a crucial part of the Stooges' lifelong friendship when it's revealed that Moe sacrificed having a family of his own unless they took Larry and Curly in also.
  • Juggling Loaded Guns: A girl is clinging to balloons and floating to the ceiling, and Larry gets the idea to take a shotgun off a wall rack to pop the balloons. Moe takes it from him, chides him for his 'gun safety' and hits him with a buttstroke — causing the gun to go off. It was already loaded on the wall.
  • The Law Firm of Pun, Pun, and Wordplay: On the floor of the building Larry and Curly were looking in, they see a variety of punny tenants' names such as "Proba, Keister & Wintz, Proctologists" and "Ditcher, Quick and Hyde, Divorce Lawyers", before arriving at the law offices of "Kickem, Harter & Indagroyne".
  • Mythology Gag:
    • "Oh, my neck!" (Moe slaps it back in place) "How do ya feel now?" "Alright!" "That's good!" (Moe slaps him)
    • The orphanage was founded in 1934, which was the year the signature trio started their line of shorts.
    • The plot with the Stooges saving an orphanage, done once in their infamous video game.
    • The Stooges' old friend from the orphanage Teddy is a reference to Ted Healy whom created the three characters for the vaudeville stage and played the straight man to their antics on stage and in their first short Soup to Nuts.
    • The scene where the Stooges escape with a fire hose, they plummet to the ground, then bounce off a shade and land on a person; which references the ending in "3 Dumb Clucks".
    • Moe and Larry use Curly as a battering ram in one scene, which also references a scene from the aforementioned "3 Dumb Clucks" short.
    • The slap/poke fight from the short "Three Little Beers" is recreated in a deleted scene with the Stooges at Teddy's anniversary party.
    • At the end of the climax, Nippy utters Shemp's signature hyperventilating whimper ("Eeeb-beeb-beeb-beeb-beeb-beeb-beeb-beeb-beeb").
  • The Napoleon: Moe is the shortest (and meanest) of the Stooges. In fact, it's more noticeable here than in the original shorts as the actors playing them are much taller than the originals (example: Moe was 5'4 while Chris Diamantopoulos (the actor playing him) is 5'9", taller than the original but still the shortest of the current actorsnote ).
  • Naughty Nuns: Kate Upton as Sister Bernice.
  • Nuns Are Funny: Especially Sister Mary-Mengele played by Larry David (in drag!).
  • Plot-Mandated Friendship Failure: After shaking the cops, Larry blames Moe for everything he did, whereas Moe decides to have them leave as he finds them as dead weight.
  • Offscreen Crash: Averted with regards to Mac being pushed in front of a bus, however the screen test version of the same scene (included on the DVD/Blu-ray) has an off-camera crash.
  • Pun:
    Moe: Now look what you did.
    Curly: It's not my fault. It was a chain reaction on the saw. See, saw. Nyuk, nyuk.
    Moe: Oh, a punster, eh?
    • After Larry pulls out the tag that unhooks the bell from the top.
    Larry: "Uh-oh. Is that Sister Mary-Mengele?"
    Curly: "I dunno, but the face rings a bell!"
    Moe: "Remind me to gouge your eyeballs out later."
    • Larry even makes one after Moe dunks Curly's head into the lobster tank, pulling him out with the lobster clinging to his ears.
    Larry: Haha! Look, it's Santy Claws! Claws!
    Moe: What did I tell you about puns?
    • The hotel where Mac and Lydia have their affair is called the Filander Inn.
  • Race Lift: Here, the Stooges are no longer Jewish, at least not knowing it.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Mother Superior.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Larry gives one to Moe and blames him for everything he's put them through. Leading to the demise of their friendship.
    Larry: You were the cause of all of our problems since day one.
    Moe: How do you figure?
    Larry: You shoulda gone to lived with Teddy's folks back when they wanted to adopt you!
    Curly: Yeah, that way, you coulda come back and helped us all out.
    Larry: But no! The great, powerful Moe is too lazy to squeegee the pool.
    Moe: Now, you don't know what you're talkin' about.
    Larry: Oh, no? Why do you think we never got another shot at gettin' adopted again? It's because when ya messed it up that day, ya messed it up for all of us.
  • Reckless Gun Usage: Two notable examples in the third act.
    • While Mac and Lydia are in the car planning to shoot Larry and Curly, Mac expresses concern over killing the two in broad daylight, claiming he's not being weak, he's being smart. While he says this, he taps the barrel of the loaded gun directly against his forehead. Lydia doesn't seem convinced.
    • During Teddy's anniversary party, a little girl gets stuck in the air thanks to a large bundle of balloons. Larry spies a rifle on the wall and tries to use to to pop the balloons, but Moe grabs it away before he can fire. After chastising Larry for being reckless, Moe bashes Larry with the butt end of the rifle, causing it to fire and pop the balloons anyway. Fortunately, the girl is not hit and she falls harmlessly onto a massive birthday cake.
  • Saving the Orphanage: The whole story involves them engaging in a series of wacky schemes to raise enough money to save the orphanage they grew up in (and still live in since nobody would adopt them.) They technically fail as the orphanage gets condemned...except they later find out their actions on Jersey Shore led to the nuns getting an advance on a reality show, thus giving them the money to build a luxury orphanage next door.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: Their signature "run away from conflict" shtick originated from the shorts.
    • The Stooges have a run in with the head nurse Moe called "Bulldog" in the hospital to find Mac.
      • They soon get chased by two policemen when being found.
    • The policemen find them again when the Stooges run their salmon farm on a golf course.
    • Even when they get spotted by Lydia and Mac when they crash the anniversary party.
    • The movie ends with the Stooges running off on horses after accidentally sending Sister Mary-Mangele into the pool.
  • Shmuck Bait: "Do Not Remove".
  • Shout-Out: The movie squeezes in a few.
    • Jennifer Hudson as a black nun who can sing.
    • Moe calls a stuffy English butler 'Threepio'.
    • GEICO gets referenced twice.
      • Once when the Stooges tend to an unconscious Mary-Mengele.
      Mary-Mengele: I saved 15% on my car insurance.
      • When Larry and Curly return to the orphanage and discover an ill Girl Murph.
      Larry: Why isn't she in a hospital?
      Mother Superior: Well...
      Mary-Mengele: I'll tell you why. Because we don't have any medical insurance.
      Larry: You should get some. Just call that little green alligator guy.
  • Spoiled Sweet: Zig-zagged regarding Teddy. Despite being adopted by rich parents he tends to be a nice guy. But at the end, it turns out he resents the nuns because his father had made him go to boarding school and so he refuses to help them save the orphanage, but then he returns at the end to adopt Murph and Peezer, revealing that he's also rescued Peez's brother from the foster system.
  • Straight Man: Moe, in this movie.
  • Take That!:
    • Moe fits in perfectly with the 'cast' of Jersey Shore. He ends up abusing them from slapping the male cast members to burning Snooki's tongue with a hair curler at one point.
    • At one point, the following exchange happens:
    Lydia: "Those three idiots [the Stooges] are here!"
    Mac: "The Kardashian girls?"
    • Curly accidentally staples the head of a guy who's already got several piercings. He's only slightly miffed.
  • Tempting Fate: Mac, when everyone is in the lake after the car crashes.
    Mac: Great! Great! How could this possibly get any worse?!
    [Curly farts, which everyone can smell, and it don't smell like daisies...]
  • Tinkle in the Eye: The diaper changing scene half way through the movie, babies start urinating on the stooges, prompting them to squirt one another with the babies. Granted, it's meant to parody the original "Pie In The Face" routine the trio use to pull off but it doesn't work so well...
  • Trapped in a Sinking Car: Everyone, including the stooges, Teddy, his father, Lynda, and Mac, are stuck in the car as sinks into a lake. It was caused by Curly's rat Nippy. Curly farts in the car after he ate some lobster with Pepto-Bismo. This gave Moe an idea, he uses some water proof matches to light a fire and blew up the car so everyone can get out.
  • True Companions: A major plot element between the Stooges. Teddy even sums it up.
    Teddy: You're happy with yourselves and with each other; it's a real blessing.
  • Unusual Pets for Unusual People: Curly's rat, Nippy.
    Mother Superior: "Oh, boys and their rodents."
  • Use Your Head: Curly, at one point, is used by Moe and Larry as a battering ram. He complains about the others twisting his ankles.
  • Visual Pun: "Plus, we have smoked salmon."note 
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: The Stooges, like in the original shorts.
  • Water Wake Up: When the Stooges knock out Sister Mary-Mengle while fixing the bell, the use a nearby bucket of water to try and wake her up. However, Moe knocked the hammer part of his sledgehammer off while trying to hit Curly, and in landed in that bucket, so they just cause her more pain.

"Kids, do not poke anyone in the eye; it's very dangerous."
"The point is, this movie's all about fun and games, so please play safe at home. Thank you."