The Bullfighters (1945)

  • Year: 1945
  • Released: 01 May 1945
  • Country: United States
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  • Available in: 720p,
  • Language: English, Spanish
  • MPA Rating: Approved
  • Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Musical
  • Runtime: 61 min
  • Writer: Scott Darling, Stan Laurel, Henry Lehrman
  • Director: Malcolm St. Clair, Stan Laurel
  • Cast: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Margo Woode
  • Keywords: bullfighting, matador (bullfighter),

The Bullfighters Storyline

The boys are detectives working in Mexico. Laurel happens to resemble a famous matador who has disappeared, and he is enlisted to replace him in the bullring.—Herman Seifer

The Bullfighters Photos

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The Bullfighters Movie Reviews

Light and goofy

A surprisingly fresh little comedy. Laurel and Hardy, in their last American made movie, have made a silly little film with enough story and gags to entertain the little ones and make the adults smile. I have to admit that I laughed out loud at some of the gags. A great moment occurs when the boys are sitting in a hotel lobby near a fountain and Stan decides to “investigate” what a particular faucet is for. Of course Ollie gets sprayed, which leads him to think someone sitting next to him is responsible. Unlike some of their other later films, the duo’s comic timing is very sharp here. The whole bit about Stan resembling a famous matador has been done before(and since), but if you don’t think about it too much the film is pleasant enough. I give it six bullfighters out of ten.

PIs from Peoria

Way back in the day before Laurel teamed with Hardy, Stanley was quite the comic silent screen star and many of his short subjects were satires of current big screen productions. One of the best of them was Mud And Sand where Stan Laurel did a spoof of Rudolph Valentino and his role in Blood And Sand. 20th Century Fox also now owned the rights to Blood And Sand because of the great Tyrone Power sound version that had come out a few years earlier.

So in their farewell film before the disastrous comeback with Utopia, Stan and Ollie did The Bullfighters where Laurel got to be a bullfighter again. And he plays a dual role the great Don Sebastian of Spain and just plain Mr. Laurel who with Mr. Hardy are a pair of private eyes from Peoria.

Now if you can wrap your minds around the concept of ANYBODY hiring these two as detectives, The Bullfighters is an amusing enough film though not up to the standards of their Hal Roach work. They’re in Mexico on an extradition job to bring back Carol Andrews and of course in their usual fashion make a holy hash of that.

But promoter Richard Lane notices Stan’s resemblance to Don Sebastian and since this guy whom he has brought over and promoted is being held up at the border. They’ve got a problem however in Ralph Sanford who got sent up the river on the mistaken testimony of these two lugnuts and threatens to skin them alive.

The Bullfighters is amusing, especially in that last sequence when both of Laurels personas show up in the bullring with the PI from Peoria getting well fortified for the occasion. I can’t blame Stan it’s the only way I would go in a bull ring.

You’ll have to see The Bullfighters to see if Sanford makes good on his threat.

The Bullfighters (1945) ***


This was the last movie the aging Laurel and Hardy made for Twentieth Century-Fox, and it’s another fun and underrated one at that, even if it doesn’t quite measure up to the classic shorts they made a decade earlier. They really manage to inject a lot of old tried and true gags into the proceedings, thanks in part to the fact that Stan Laurel is reported to have co-directed, and so the team had more input with regard to their jokes and material. Here, the “boys” are in Mexico where Stan is mistaken for a famous bullfighter. Many laughs ensue, and this one’s a winner.

*** out of ****