Variety Review

The following is a transcript of an original review from the 1937 Variety magazine.
Latest Laurel-Hardy opus just about extinguishes the good results achieved in "Our Relations", previous effort. Way Out West will do most of its pioneering on the lower side of double-bill teams. Picture may gain a share of patronage through the comedy team's showing made in preceding releases, but after that it will be tough sledding.
Manner in which this comedy falters and stumbles along is probably due both to formula direction and scripting. Three are credited with the scenario and two for the original story. Seemingly too many took a hand; plot reads that way.
In general pattern the latest Laurel and Hardy entry follows closely the old methods used on their feature shorts. There's too much driving home of gags. Several of them are new, or are given new twists, but the ponderous way in which they are put over washes out their expected effect.
Laurel and Hardy sing and dance in this one, both to neat returns. They fail to follow up the advantage achieved in their preceding film by not talking again or working their chatter in effectively. Instead this looks like a series of gags loosely strung together.
The two boys are commissioned to deliver a deed to a gold mine. They find out, after handing it over, that the valuable paper has been given to the wrong girl. Hence, the mad race to readjust matters. On this thin framework hangs all of the quips. And Oliver Hardy falls into a pool of water for the third time as the eventual fadeout arrives.
For the Laurel-Hardy fans, who howl at anything the pair does, they may appear as comical as ever. They wear their usual costumes, despite the cowboy - western surroundings. Sharon Lynne, comely blonde, works hard to gain prominence in a role that might well have been made more of. Instead, James Finlayson again is cast as villain-straight man which further slows up the action. Rosina Lawrence, heroine who's supposed to inherit the gold mine, appears only for fleeting glimpses. Stanley Fields, in the role of sheriff, is totally wasted. The Avalon Boys contribute a few bars of harmony for added production value.
Stan Laurel is given partial credit for being producer, which probably proves that he is best as a comic. Several smart lines creep into the sparsity of dialog, but most of it is fundamental wordage.
Originally from Variety, May 3, 1937.

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