Moe discovers Curly\'s unknown boxing talent when he knocks out the Champ at a restaurant when Larry plays \"Pop Goes the Weasal\" on the violin. Moe becomes Curly\'s manager, and they win every fight, with the help of Larry. At the championship game, though, Larry\'s violin breaks. Curly is getting beat down bad when Larry makes his unexpected entrance and helps Curly prevail.
Moe Howard ... Moe (as Moe)
Larry Fine ... Larry (as Larry)
Curly Howard ... Curley aka K.O. Stradivarius (as Curley)
Dorothy Granger ... Girl
\"Punch Drunks\" is a very good Three Stooges\' comedy, with a typically silly situation leading to a lot of confusion and laughs. Moe is a struggling boxing manager who is eating lunch when he discovers that his waiter, Curly, transforms into a formidable fighter whenever he hears the song \"Pop Goes the Weasel\". Curly soon gets the chance to fight the champ. The fight sequence, cross-cut with Larry\'s frantic attempts to provide the needed musical accompaniment, is filled with laughs, and caps off a very funny short film. All three Stooges get the chance to perform at their best in this one.
In this early effort, rather than just watching the threesome run around and bash each other, there is genuine plot and character development. Instead of three barely distinguishable buffoons, we have three distinct characters interacting in an actual story line. They have a plausible initial meeting at a restaurant where Curly works as a waiter, Moe is a customer who discovers Curly\'s hidden boxing talent, and Larry the down-and-out musician who inadvertently plays the tune that sets Curly off. The plot device of having some stimulus turn Curly into an invincible destruction machine is reused in later efforts, most notably the mouse in the later \"Moe, Larry, the cheese\" routine, but they never really improve upon the use of \"Pop Goes the Weasel\" here. Larry is always at his best when he is able to play the violin in a way that fits plausibly into the plot, and Moe is actually sympathetic as the tough guy who takes the distraught Curly under his wing and makes him a success. The story is a real story, not just a loose string of slapstick antics; we actually feel tension and anticipation at the end as we watch Curly being beaten up by his opponent and wonder if and how Larry will find another way to play \"Pop Goes the Weasel.\" Grade: A+.
What a great classic by the Three Stooges! This episode is mainly by Curly. In the beginning he is just an abused waiter, he takes too much from everyone. When Larry walks in just looking for some money by playing in the restaurant that Curly works in, he starts playing \"Pop goes the Weasel\". Curly has a snap reaction to the men he is serving, including Moe, and beats them all up. Moe has discovered Curly\'s talent as a boxer and wants to make money off of him, and he brings Larry along as the second helping hand. Eventually, this leads Curly to the big championship for boxing.
From one Three Stooges fan to another: Brilliant! 9/10
# In the original script, it was \"Stars and Stripes Forever\" that drove Curly Howard crazy, but it was changed when it was decided that Larry Fine would play the tune on the violin. Larry himself chose \"Pop-Goes-the-Weasel\" because the other song didn\'t sound right when played on the violin.
# This is the only Three Stooges short that the stooges (Moe Howard, Larry Fine and Curly Howard) wrote entirely themselves.