You’re in the Army Now (1941)
Movie Review by Debbie Winkler
Starring: Jimmy Durante, Phil Silvers, Jane Wyman, Donald MacBride, Regis Toomey
Director: Lewis Seiler
Release Date: 25 December 1941
Length: 79 minutes
Movie Rating: Not Rated
View Format: TV
My Rating: 4/5 stars
Two door-to-door vacuum salesmen (Jimmy Durante & Phil Silvers) call on the home of an army recruiter and accidentally find themselves enlisted in the army! They are ill-suited for service, however, and Homer “Jeeper” Smith (Jimmy Durante) in particular finds himself in all kinds of trouble as he tells gives the officers his honest opinion of how his uniform fits, how his feet feel, and more. He gets himself in even more trouble when he is put on KP duty, sent to the guard house and assigned to cleani the floors. But it is when he tries to help another officer (Regis Toomey) persuade the colonel (Donald MacBride) that it is time to switch over from a cavalry unit to a mechanized tank unit that he really steps over the line!
This is a silly look at two men who are not meant to be soldiers in any way, shape or form. Breezy Jones (Phil Silvers) is too prissy and timid and the other, Homer “Jeeper” Smith (Jimmy Durante) doesn’t know how to keep his mouth shut. They manage to make all of the officers mad at them and cannot seem to function under discipline and rules. They are really funny in their antics, however, and viewers will surely get a kick out of their antics. Jeeper tries to escape from his drill sergeant (Joe Sawyer) by dressing up as a girl and performing on stage in a crazy dance routine. He also is pretty funny as he gets outfitted with his uniform and other gear and decides that none of it fits properly and so he isn’t going to wear it. Of course, this leads to lots of foot trouble and for being mistaken as a dummy to practice stabbing with a bayonet! My favorite scene, however, had to be the one where Jeeper is stuck squeezing 1,000s of lemons to make lemonade and accidentally pours a bunch of alum in it. This causes everyone to pucker at the mouth and the colonel thinks that everyone is making fun of the general who has a permanent pucker. It was too funny! Of course, the scene where Jeeper & Breezy decide to “help” the colonel and move his house with the tank is pretty hilarious, too!
There is nothing really accurate about this movie as far as I can see, but it sure was funny! The characters in the movie are so over-the-top and crazy that you cannot help but get some good laughs as you watch their crazy moves and see how they react to hilarious situations. This black-and-white classic will surely appeal to anyone who appreciates classic comedy or is looking for a humorous look at the army. The story is nowhere near serious and is more like watching a series of comedy skits, but there are a lot of funny scenes that you are sure to enjoy. If you have the opportunity to catch this movie on TV, I think that you will enjoy yourself – especially if you can find someone older to watch it with you as they will surely have a lot of memories to share.
This movie shows some mild violence in military situations. Appropriate for viewers of all ages.