A Fine Mess

That famous comedy team of Howie Mandel and Ted Danson stink up the joint in this bizarre attempt by Blake Edwards at re-creating the slapstick world of Laurel and Hardy. Initially envisioned as a partial remake of Laurel and Hardy's The Music Box, this degenerates into a witless plot involving racehorse fixing and a gangster's unfaithful wife. The cast, which includes Maria Conchita Alonso, Richard Mulligan, and Stuart Margolin, looks embarrassed at the helter-skelter attempts at slapstick, which barely rises to the level of schtick. Danson and Mandel both had hit TV shows at the time (Cheers and St. Elsewhere, respectively), but this movie misfire did nothing to ignite their cinematic careers. --Marshall Fine


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