The Adventures of Curley and His Gang
Robert F. McGowan, Hal Roach jr (executive) for Hal Roach Studios/United Artists
directed by Bernard Carr
starring Larry Olsen, Frances Rafferty, Eilene Janssen, Dale Belding, Peter Miles (as Gerald Perreau), Ardda Lynwood, Kathleen Howard, Edna Holland, Rene Beard, Donald King, Billy Andrews, Guy Beach, Billy Gray, Gene Holland, George McDonald, James Menzies, Thomas Menzies, Georgie Nokes, Robert Bentley, Helen Brown, Ferris Taylor, Jim Farley, Eddie Dunn, Syd Saylor, Fred Trowbridge, Kermit Maynard
story by Dorothy Davenport (as Dorothy Reid), Robert F. McGowan, screenplay by Mary McCarthy, music by Heinz Roemheld
Curley and His Gang
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Curley (Larry Olsen) and his classmates are distraught because they
lose their beloved teacher (Helen Brown) in marriage to an army man
(Robert Bentley), and then Curley finds out (or thinks he does) his new
teacher is an old dragon (Edna Holland), so he and his friends decide to
play some nasty pranks on her to chase her off. On his way to school
though, Curley hails a ride with lovely Mildred (Frances Rafferty), and he
spills out all the tricks they want to play on the teacher to her ... to
later in class learn that Milded is in fact their new teacher, and knowing
about all the little tricks, she makes sure they backfire with nobody
coming to actual harm. Only Curley's coup de grace, to smoke out the
classroom, goes off by accident, leaving him in tears and running away -
and it leaves Mildred puzzled, as she was sure she had already figured him
out and diffused the situation.
The afternoon of her first day, Mildred
takes the kids to a picnic, only Curley's too ashamed to come as he thinks
he has made her lose her job. Mildred though is a hit with the other kids,
and gets a raving appraisal, and eventually she manages to track down
Curley to make up with him over icecream and cake.
was Hal Roach's attempt to come up with a new series (shot in somewhat
unreal CineColor) to rival the success of his former superhit Our
Gang - but after just one more film (Who
Killed Doc Robbin?) the series was scrapped, and frankly from
watching this movie it's not hard to see why: Most of the gags in the film
seem stale, the "cute kids" angle is over-emphasized to a degree
that the story is smothered ... and really, there isn't much of a story in
the first place, the main conflict (Curley being embarrassed by what he
did to his teacher) is lame, its resolution a non-climax, and the way to
get to the resolution lacks excitement. Really, there are better ways to
kill some 50-odd minutes.