Our second Abbott and Costello film of today’s double-feature takes the boys back to Universal Studios for their 1942 comedy Pardon My Sarong!
Chicago bus drivers Algy Shaw (Bud Abbott) and Wellington Phlug (Lou Costello) are hired by playboy Tommy Layton (Robert Paige) to take him to Los Angeles. At the Seaside Yachting Club, where Tommy celebrates with all the gals he brought with him on the trip, he accidentally kisses Joan Marshall (Virginia Bruce), the sister of one of his competitors in an upcoming yachting race. She complains that Tommy had hired away her brother’s crew, and she sets out to sabotage Tommy. Now, without a crew, he hires Algy and Wellington to help him and brings along Joan, whom he caught on his boat. However, the damage has been done, and they soon find themselves WAY off course, without food or fresh water. Luckily, they come upon land, where they run into the native people of the island. The natives soon assume Wellington to be a hero that would help them re-conquer a haunted temple, and Luana (Nan Wynn), the daughter of their chief, offers to marry Wellington. Of course, the archaeologist living nearby, Varnoff (Lionel Atwill), is not quite who he seems to be…
Pardon My Sarong was originally planned with the title Road To Montezuma, in an attempt to reference the Bing Crosby and Bob Hope Road movies. The movie was mostly shot on the Universal backlot, but some production did occur on location in the Salton Sea. When released, audiences continued to fill the seats to see the movie. It became their biggest hit, up to that point, and was the second-highest grossing movie of the year, only losing to that year’s Best Picture winner Mrs. Miniver.
This is a movie I had seen maybe once or twice before (nearly a decade ago at this point), and it hadn’t really stuck with me at that point. However, as I watched the movie again recently, I found myself enjoying it very much! As you can tell from my plot description, the movie kind of goes all over the place as far as what is actually happening, but I think it still works. Abbott and Costello use at least three of their classic routines here, including “Go Ahead And Back Up,” “Tree Of Truth” and “Stinker.” I thought they were hilarious with each of these routines, plus when they were being chased by a pursuing detective (played by William Demarest) in a theatre, and both of them substitute themselves as a magician, in which they end up burning up the detective’s arrest warrant. Honestly, I just think of some of these moments, and I start cracking up, they were so funny for me! Most of the music here is so-so (although I will readily admit to liking the song “Vingo Jingo” and getting it stuck in my head), but there was some fun dancing by Tip Tap and Toe. I can tap dance myself, and I’m certainly less of a klutz on the dance floor than I am off, but I can guarantee if I were trying to do some of the sliding around and tap dancing on top of a table like those three were, I’d be in a hospital in no time, so it was definitely an impressive thing to see! All in all, a very enjoyable movie, and one I would recommend for its overall fun and humor!
This movie is available on Blu-ray as part of the 28-film The Complete Abbott And Costello Universal Pictures Collection, and is one hour, twenty-four minutes in length.
My Rating: 9/10
List Of Actor/Actress Filmographies/Collections