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Hellzapoppin'

Director:  H.C. Potter & Edward F. Cline
Year Released:  1941
Rating:  3.5

Ole Olsen and 'Chic' Johnson (as 'themselves'), after landing in Hades (with people being stuffed into cans by devils), are given the task of going 'inside' a movie in order to make sure two people get married (this involves meddling with a song and dance show). Any plot summary cannot adequately do justice to the madcap zaniness - this literally throws the kitchen sink of gags at the audience, repeatedly breaking the fourth wall and defying any and all logic and reason (it was co-directed by Cline, who made a lot of the W.C. Fields movies ... and co-written by Nat Perrin, who collaborated with the Marx Brothers). There are probably too many songs in there for its already slim running time and it's so easily distracted it (purposely) forgets where it's supposed to be going, but the sense of anarchy is strong: it's very much about the Joys (and Difficulties) of Performance. It also has probably the best running joke about a block of ice I've ever seen (Martha Raye's body heat melts it).

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