The Ghost Talks (1949) starring Moe Howard, Larry Fine, Shemp Howard
Synopsis of The Ghost Talks
In The Ghost Talks, Moe, Larry and Shemp are furniture movers who try to move the armor haunted by the ghost of Peeping Tom.
All goes well until a clanking suit of armor inhabited by the ghost of Sir Tom (voiced by Phil Arnold) instructs the Stooges to leave him alone. Shemp, Larry and Moe all take turns trying to move Tom’s haunted armor, but he scares the Stooges away.
Summary of The Ghost Talks
The Three Stooges are working as moving men, moving a variety of artifacts from “Smorgasbord Castle” — on a dark and stormy night, of course.
The proceed to do their work, frightening themselves … Until a haunted suit of armor starts talking to them, telling them that it doesn’t want to leave. The typical “haunted house” shenanigans ensue, with each Stooge — one at a time at first for comedic effect — interacting with the haunted armor. Including turning into a slot machine! “You’re really a friendly spirit!”
Then, the ghost — the spirit of Peeping Tom — tells his story. He and Lady Godiva were sweethearts. Tom forgetfully opened his shutters, and saw the naked Godiva going down the street. He was beheaded, and his spirit imprisoned in the armor for 1,000 years. But today his time is up, and he’s waiting for the spirit of Lady Godiva to rejoin him.
Frightened by this, Larry goes out to the truck to fetch “the bottle”. So the three of them can have a drink. Make it four! It’s a bottle of … milk. The Three Stooges insist on moving all of the items, include the haunted armor. He doesn’t want to go, and threatens them with bad luck if they persist.
Spooky shenanigans ensue, with an encounter with a frog, a talking skeleton, and a bird inside a skull. Finally, Lady Godiva (Nancy Saunders) arrives on her horse, and Tom leaves with her. When the Stooges go to the window to watch them ride by, the all get pied, and the short ends.
Funny movie quotes
Shemp: [imitating the host of the radio show] Strange happenings in the outer sanctorum, strange, happenings … [spooky laugh]
[Moe hits Shemp]
Shemp: What was that?
Moe: A strange happening!
Ghost of Peeping Tom: Sorry gentlemen, I
Ghost of Peeping Tom: haven’t had a smoke in a thousand years.
Shemp: Think you’re old enough to smoke?
Ghost of Peeping Tom: That confounded shutter.
Shemp: I shutter to think of it.
Moe: Shutter up!
Moe: That does it! Go out to the truck and get that bottle … I need a drink!
Larry: Me two!
Shemp: Me Three!
Ghost of Peeping Tom: Four!
Shemp: Six lions were tearin’ me apart bit by bit! Six lions!
Moe: You’re lyin’.
Skelton: Greetings, gents! Greetings, that is!
Moe: Who are you?
Skelton: I’m Red.
Shemp: Oh, Red Skeleton!
[Skeletons playing chess]
Skeleton 1: Go ahead! Don’t sit there like you’re dead!
Skeleton 2: [to the Three Stooges] Go away, boys, you bother me!
Trivia for The Ghost Talks
- The Ghost Talks was remade in 1956 as Creeps, using stock footage.
- Director Jules White voiced the skeleton identifying himself as Red Skeleton, a reference to comedian Red Skelton.
- The NBC chimes are heard when Moe stabs Shemp with a crooked safety pin.
Cast of characters
- Shemp Howard … Shemp
- Larry Fine … Larry
- Moe Howard … Moe
- Phil Arnold (Tricky Dicks) … Ghost of Peeping Tom (voice)
- Don Brodie (I’ll Never Heil Again) … Tom the Tailor
- Nancy Saunders (Brideless Groom) … Lady Godiva
- Jules White (Rhythm and Weep) … Red Skeleton / Chess-playing Skeleton (voice)