After two sailors are conned into buying a lame race-horse, they go ashore to sort out the problem, but when they realize that the horse is one of a pair of identical twins, their plan for revenge becomes more complicated.
Casino operator Johnny Lamb hires down-on-her-luck socialite Lucille Sutton as his casino hostess, in order to help her and to improve casino income. But Lamb's pals fear he may follow ... See full summary »
Captain Spaulding, the noted explorer, returns from Africa and attends a gala party held by Mrs. Rittenhouse. A painting displayed at that party is stolen, and the Marxes help recover it. Well, maybe 'help' isn't quite the word I was looking for--this is the Marx Brothers, after all... Written by
Ken Yousten <email@example.com>
For this film, Harpo Marx switched to a lighter red wig which actually photographed as blonde. In the film, he is referred to as a redhead. He would use the lighter wig in all future Marx Brothers movies. He went back to the darker red wig for The Story of Mankind (1957) which was filmed in color. See more »
In the opening scenes Hives turns to speak to Mrs. Rittenhouse after his opening song, and his waistcoat is different. It continues to swap from one style to another throughout the movie. See more »
One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got in my pajamas, I don't know. Then we tried to remove the tusks. The tusks. That's not so easy to say. Tusks. You try it some time.
Oh, simple: "tusks."
[shakes Chandler's hand]
My name is Spaulding. I've always wanted to meet you, Mr. Chandler. As I say, we tried to remove the tusks. But they were embedded so firmly we couldn't budge them. Of course, in Alabama the Tuscaloosa, but that is entirely ir-elephant to what I was talking about.
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Is it a surprise that "Animal Crackers" takes a simple plot and turns it on its ear in a matter of minutes as a launching pad for the insanity of the Marx Brothers?
No, but it makes sense.
The characters in "Animal Crackers" celebrate the return of world traveler Captain Spaulding (Groucho) while also dealing with the theft of a rare work of art at the home of the wealthy Mrs. Rittenhouse (Dumont), where the soiree takes place. But once the good captain arrives, along with Spaulding's stenographer Jamison (Zeppo), Signore Ravelli (Chico) and the Professor (Harpo), nothing sane or expected takes place afterwards. But really, what did you expect?
Perfect foils are the likes of Dumont and art patron Mr. Chandler (Sorin), the latter of which is revealed to be Abie the Fish Peddler from Czechoslovakia by fellow Czech Chico. in fact, here's a FAVORITE LINE: Chandler - (to Chico) "Hey! How did you get to be Italian?" Chico - "Never you a-mind; who's-a confession is-a this?". What's not to love?
Anyway, there's loads of quotable dialogue, sight gags galore, a great running gag with a picture of a horse and a finale that must be seen to be believed. Of course, this whole MOVIE must be seen to be believed!
Ten stars and a pair of elephant pajamas for "Animal Crackers" - the perfect side dish for four hams.
TIDBIT - The song "Hooray for Captain Spaulding" was later re-used by Groucho for his game show "You Bet Your Life". Can't say that I blame him.
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