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The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock

The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock (1959) starring Lou Costello, Dorothy Provine, Gale Gordon

In The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock, Lou Costello‘s a frustrated would-be scientist. He’s in love with Emmy Lou, but her Uncle Raven won’t hear of it. Then, she stumbles into a cave with a strange gas …

Review

The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock is Lou Costello’s only solo film. Lou was a very funny man, and I really wanted to enjoy it. But, I frankly didn’t. I enjoyed it more than Africa Screams, but that’s a low bar to pass.

Artie Pinsetter (Lou Costello) and Emmy Lou (Dorothy Provine) in The Thirty Foot Bride of Candy Rock
Artie Pinsetter (Lou Costello) and Emmy Lou (Dorothy Provine) in The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock

Lou Costello plays Artie Pinsetter, the rubbish collector. He has a secret desire to be a great scientist, but he’s insecure. He lives in fear of “Uncle” Raven Rossiter, who runs their small town. But, he’s in love with Raven’s lovely niece, Emmy Lou. And she loves him back. But Uncle Raven won’t hear of her dating a rubbish man! Until Emmy Lou is mysteriously turned into a giant …

So, what’s wrong with The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock? Several things. First, Lou’s simply too old to play this type of character. He was 54 at the time, and Dorothy Provine was only 24. He’s supposed to play a young man, trying to prove his worth to Emmy Lou, Uncle Raven, and the world. It simply doesn’t play well.

I also found the conclusion silly, not funny. It’s not that I hated the movie — I didn’t. I did enjoy it, but it’s not a first-class comedy. I only rate it 2.5 stars out of 5.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Comedy highlights

Emmy Lou is jealous -- and angry!
  • Artie smuggling Emmy Lou out of the house in a rubbish barrel.
  • Artie trying to explain to Uncle Raven that his niece is now 30 feet tall …. But Raven misunderstands, and thinks that she’s pregnant!
  • Artie brings a parachute to Emmy Lou — for her to sew a gigantic wedding dress out of.
  • Gigantic Emmy Lou trying to fry an egg for her new husband, Artie.
  • Caravan of food to feed the hungry Emmy Lou …. Courtesy of Uncle Raven, who’s trying to keep the whole thing quiet until after the election.
  • Uncle Raven “gives” the newlywed couple a house for a wedding present …. An old barn, 10 miles out of town. “I won’t go.”
  • The poor Army driver, who reacts to the size of the gigantic Emmy Lou …. And causes a massive pile up with his convoy!
  • Gigantic Emmy Lou’s shower.
  • The poor Army pilot’s reaction to her sticking out the barn roof.
  • Jackie running for her life from the gigantic — and jealous — Emmy Lou.

Be sure to check out the funny movies quotes from The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock as well.

Positives

Max, Artie, and Emmy Lou in a romantic moment
  • Artie and Emmy Lou are both sweet and likable.
  • The rest of the cast do a good job as well. Gale Gordon makes a good villain, Charles Lane a good toady.
  • The effects are slightly better than in The Attack of the Fifty Foot Woman. But, not by much.

Negatives

Caveman Lou in the "zany" ending of The Thirty Foot Bride of Candy Rock
  • At this point in his life, Lou Costello was probably too old to play this part.
  • Max is one of those 1950’s computers that can do literally anything. Send Artie & the pursuing soldiers back in time, make Artie fly, restore Emmy Lou to her normal size …. Anything.
  • The “zany” pursuit at the end is silly. Not funny, just silly.
  • Emmy Lou stands up to her uncle, and declares that she’s in charge of her life. Until her husband, Artie, tells her that he’s now in charge, and she’s to do whatever he tells her. And she meekly agrees.
  • The Army believes Artie that Max can control time and space …. Without the slightest bit of evidence.

Editorial review of The 30 Foot Bride of Candy Rock courtesy of Amazon

Rubbish collector and amateur inventor Artie Pinsetter (Lou Costello) hopes that someday one of his inventions will make him wealthy and important enough for him to marry his sweetheart Emmy Lou (Dorothy Provine). After one of his creations, a portable computer named Max, tells Emmy Lou that Artie cannot marry her, she runs off into a smoky canyon and starts to grow. Artie seeks help from Emmy’s uncle (Gale Gordon) who misunderstands Artie and thinks she is “big” with child. He sends the justice of the peace to marry the couple.

Emmy Lou (Dorothy Provine) standing up to her uncle in "The Thirty Foot Bride of Candy Rock"

He is also running for governor and does not want the public to know about his niece’s problem. If that is not enough, the army believes her to be a giant Martian and sends out troops to destroy her. Empowered by her new height, Emmy rampages through town and takes command of her life. Max is also able to change the space-time continuum helping Artie escape the army, which is chasing him while dressed as confederates and then cavemen. Lou Costello made this parody of The Attack of the 50-Foot Woman without his partner Bud Abbott right before Costello died. –Margaret Griffis

Cast

  • Lou Costello … Artie Pinsetter. Would-be scientist and garbage man. He’s created a ridiculously powerful computer named Max. His dog, and friend, is Corporal.
  • Dorothy Provine (It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World, The Great Race) … Emmy Lou Rossiter
  • Gale Gordon (Our Miss Brooks, Here’s Lucy) … Raven Rossiter. The bank president, who runs the one-horse town of Candy Rock. He’s running for governor. And his niece Emmy Lou’s becoming a giantess is putting a crimp in his plans.
  • Jimmy Conlin (The Sin of Harold Diddlebock) … Magruder. The near-sighted justice of the peace, and one of Raven’s toadies.
  • Charles Lane (Miss Grant Takes Richmond, The Invisible Woman) … Stanford Bates. Zoning Commissioner, Recorder of Deeds, and most other minor functions in Candy Rock’s bureaucracy. One of Raven’s toadies.
  • Robert Burton (The Slime People) … General Grifin. “Notify the Pentagon, and please spell my name right!” “What am I going to tell the Pentagon? I won’t tell them anything. I’ll just send my uniform back in the morning.”
  • Will Wright (The Andy Griffith Show) … Pentagon General.
  • Lenny Kent … Sergeant. He actually injects a little bit of humor into the pursuit at the end, which was appreciated.
  • Ruth Perrott … Aunt May. Emmy Lou’s loving aunt. A sweet, kind woman. A good counterpart to Uncle Raven.
  • Peter Leeds … Bill Burton. TV reporter, who’s in Candy Rock to interview new “Uncle Raven”. Who owns virtually every business in the town, and is running for governor. Until a “bigger” story develops.
  • Robert Nichols … Bank Manager
  • Veola Vonn (Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy) … Jackie Delaney. The young woman who keeps chasing Artie for some reason. And, makes Emmy Lou jealous!
  • Jack Straw … Pilot. The poor Army pilot, who nearly loses it when he sees the gigantic woman.

Trivia

  • This is not Lou Costello’s only film without Bud Abbott. In the 1920’s Lou travelled to Hollywood, where he appeared as a stunt man and extra in many films. One of them was Laurel and Hardy’s Battle of the Century.
  • Final film of Lou Costello, and his only starring role without Bud Abbott. It was released posthumously, five months after Lou’s death.
  • During the finale when Pinsetter is launched briefly into space, he flies next to a space capsule. A dog is heard barking, and Pinsetter barks back. This was a reference to the Soviet Union’s Sputnik 2, which carried a dog named Laika.

About

Tom Raymond is a professional computer, programmer, and writer, with a love for the classic comedy team of Abbott and Costello

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