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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Little Giant (1946)

(aka: On the Carpet)



Reviews and Comments

Little Giant was an experiment for Abbott and Costello. Although this is as energetic a comedy as their usual work, there are two important differences. One, there's a strong use of sorrow and tragedy to accompany the comedy. It reminded me of the works of Charlie Chaplin, although Little Giant doesn't succeed as well. Two, Abbott and Costello have very few scenes together. Perhaps it was an experiment to see how well they worked on their own. If so, the experiment met with mixed success. The scenes they do have together have a vigor uncharacteristic of the rest of the film, and it makes the pacing uneven.

I liked Little Giant, but just barely. The comedy should have been funnier (two scenes are outstanding: an early scene where Costello tries out his salesmanship tactics for the first time, and the classic "7 times 13 is 28" sketch, which is recycled in a few of their films but just as funny here), and the tragedy should have cut deeper. But both succeed at an entertaining level.