DVD Review HTF REVIEW: Fancy Pants

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Scott Kimball, Jun 22, 2004.

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  1. Scott Kimball

    Scott Kimball Screenwriter

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    [​IMG]

    Fancy Pants



    Studio: Paramount

    Year: 1950

    Rated: G

    Length: 92 minutes

    Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1

    Audio: English Mono

    English subtitles, closed captioned

    Special Features: none

    S.R.P. $14.99


    Release Date: June 29, 2004




    Bob Hope is Arthur Tyler, an actor, posing as an English nobleman in this entertaining musical farce - a remake of Ruggles of Red Gap. Agatha Floud (Lucille Ball) is a wealthy southern belle, in on the act (to her dismay), as Hope plays Earl to Teddy Roosevelt.

    The first act, which takes place in England, is underplayed - simply setting the scene for the events to follow in the American South. Hope’s agility with doublespeak and slapstick is played to near perfection here, as Lucille Ball plays a more straight role. The third act, with Hope entertaining Roosevelt in a fox hunt while trying to hide his true identity, is the icing on the cake.

    Made in 1950,Fancy Pants is a period piece (taking place in the first decade of the 1900’s) - but still manages to be dated by some humor which would be considered inappropriate today, due to ethnic humor and slang. In particular, there are uncomfortable caricatures of Native Americans and Asians. The slurs are not intentionally mean-spirited, and reflect the times in which the film was made.

    What more can be said of a Bob Hope classic... description doesn’t do the film justice.

    Video
    This film was made in Academy ratio, and is presented in fullscreen. The image is, for the most part, sharp and detailed. Colors are beautifully saturated, though hues tend to exhibit mild shifts, on occasion. Contrast is good, with strong black levels and good shadow detail. Grain is minimal, and only an occasional speck of dust is visible on the print. Though this film is presented in its original aspect ratio, I must admit that some of the dance numbers seemed really cramped in this format. One can’t fault the transfer for that, however - it’s just an observation. This transfer is very nice, for its age.

    Audio
    Fancy Pants is presented with the original English mono track, in two channels. Frequency response is somewhat limited, but dialog sounds acceptable and is always intelligible. There is some slight flutter in the higher frequencies which, unfortunately, becomes quite prominent in the musical numbers. If it weren’t for the flutter, this would be a very good mono track.

    Special Features
    There are none.

    Final Thoughts
    Fancy Pants is an entertaining farce with engaging performances from comedic legends. Toss in a couple of light musical numbers, and you have some good old-fashioned entertainment.

    Aside from the audio flutter during the musical sequences, this is a fine transfer of a Bob Hope / Lucille Ball classic.
     
  2. Scott Kimball

    Scott Kimball Screenwriter

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    [​IMG]

    Fancy Pants



    Studio: Paramount

    Year: 1950

    Rated: G

    Length: 92 minutes

    Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1

    Audio: English Mono

    English subtitles, closed captioned

    Special Features: none

    S.R.P. $14.99


    Release Date: June 29, 2004




    Bob Hope is Arthur Tyler, an actor, posing as an English nobleman in this entertaining musical farce - a remake of Ruggles of Red Gap. Agatha Floud (Lucille Ball) is a wealthy southern belle, in on the act (to her dismay), as Hope plays Earl to Teddy Roosevelt.

    The first act, which takes place in England, is underplayed - simply setting the scene for the events to follow in the American South. Hope’s agility with doublespeak and slapstick is played to near perfection here, as Lucille Ball plays a more straight role. The third act, with Hope entertaining Roosevelt in a fox hunt while trying to hide his true identity, is the icing on the cake.

    Made in 1950,Fancy Pants is a period piece (taking place in the first decade of the 1900’s) - but still manages to be dated by some humor which would be considered inappropriate today, due to ethnic humor and slang. In particular, there are uncomfortable caricatures of Native Americans and Asians. The slurs are not intentionally mean-spirited, and reflect the times in which the film was made.

    What more can be said of a Bob Hope classic... description doesn’t do the film justice.

    Video
    This film was made in Academy ratio, and is presented in fullscreen. The image is, for the most part, sharp and detailed. Colors are beautifully saturated, though hues tend to exhibit mild shifts, on occasion. Contrast is good, with strong black levels and good shadow detail. Grain is minimal, and only an occasional speck of dust is visible on the print. Though this film is presented in its original aspect ratio, I must admit that some of the dance numbers seemed really cramped in this format. One can’t fault the transfer for that, however - it’s just an observation. This transfer is very nice, for its age.

    Audio
    Fancy Pants is presented with the original English mono track, in two channels. Frequency response is somewhat limited, but dialog sounds acceptable and is always intelligible. There is some slight flutter in the higher frequencies which, unfortunately, becomes quite prominent in the musical numbers. If it weren’t for the flutter, this would be a very good mono track.

    Special Features
    There are none.

    Final Thoughts
    Fancy Pants is an entertaining farce with engaging performances from comedic legends. Toss in a couple of light musical numbers, and you have some good old-fashioned entertainment.

    Aside from the audio flutter during the musical sequences, this is a fine transfer of a Bob Hope / Lucille Ball classic.
     
  3. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    There's Hope for all!
    Thanks for the review.
     
  4. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    There's Hope for all!
    Thanks for the review.
     
  5. Bill Parisho

    Bill Parisho Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the memories (and nice review). I've been building up a great collection of Bob Hope movies on DVD and I'll be adding this to the collection.
    One complaint: Hey Paramount! Can't you throw in a couple of extras. A trailer, a newsreel piece, anything!
    Bill Parisho
     
  6. Bill Parisho

    Bill Parisho Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the memories (and nice review). I've been building up a great collection of Bob Hope movies on DVD and I'll be adding this to the collection.
    One complaint: Hey Paramount! Can't you throw in a couple of extras. A trailer, a newsreel piece, anything!
    Bill Parisho
     
  7. Steve...O

    Steve...O Producer

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    Thanks Scott for the review. I always thought "Fancy Pants" was an unheralded classic. Both Bob and Lucy are very good in this.

    Folks who know Bob primarily from his later years sometimes don't realize what a fine series of films he made in the late 30's to early 50's.

    Unfortunately his movies in the 60's and 70's are not very good (at least in my view) for the most part.

    Steve
     
  8. Steve...O

    Steve...O Producer

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    Thanks Scott for the review. I always thought "Fancy Pants" was an unheralded classic. Both Bob and Lucy are very good in this.

    Folks who know Bob primarily from his later years sometimes don't realize what a fine series of films he made in the late 30's to early 50's.

    Unfortunately his movies in the 60's and 70's are not very good (at least in my view) for the most part.

    Steve
     
  9. Jefferson

    Jefferson Supporting Actor

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    This is a nice remake of RUGGLES OF RED GAP, and it brings back many happy memories of the days when the old movies ran on my local TV station on Saturday afternoons....
    Lucy's singing is dubbed in this one, btw..."Hey, Fancy Pants!"
     
  10. Jefferson

    Jefferson Supporting Actor

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    This is a nice remake of RUGGLES OF RED GAP, and it brings back many happy memories of the days when the old movies ran on my local TV station on Saturday afternoons....
    Lucy's singing is dubbed in this one, btw..."Hey, Fancy Pants!"
     

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