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Animal Crackers (1930)

Passed  -  Comedy | Musical  -  28 August 1930 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 9,330 users  
Reviews: 78 user | 40 critic

Mayhem and zaniness ensue when a valuable painting goes missing during a party in honor of famed African explorer Captain Spaulding.

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(based on the musical play by), (based on the musical play by), 4 more credits »
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The Brian Sisters are also featured in this short.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Zeppo Marx ...
...
...
Louis Sorin ...
Hal Thompson ...
Margaret Irving ...
Kathryn Reece ...
Robert Greig ...
Edward Metcalf ...
The Music Masters ...
Six Footmen
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Storyline

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 <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The maddest comics of them all!

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 August 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Os Galhofeiros  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Zeppo Marx was one of only two of The Marx Brothers to play a recurring role in their films (not counting when they used their own names). He played the role of "Jamison" in both The Cocoanuts (1929) and Animal Crackers (1930). See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

[to Mrs. Rittenhouse and Mrs. Whitehead]
Capt. Spaulding: You know, you two girls have everything. You're tall and short and slim and stout and blonde and brunette. And that's just the kind of a girl I crave.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Time of the Apes (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Gypsy Chorus
(1852) (uncredited)
from "Il Trovatore"
Music by Giuseppe Verdi
Libretto by Salvatore Cammarano
Performed by Groucho Marx, Harpo Marx and Chico Marx
See more »

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User Reviews

 
strangely modern and modernly strange
22 June 2004 | by (Brooklyn, NY) – See all my reviews

Judging by the script, you'd never believe that "Animal Crackers" is over seventy years old. Think of all the "postmodern" things that happen in this movie: Groucho directly addresses the audience to apologize for a bad joke; Harpo shoots a gun at a statue, only to see the statue come to life and return fire; and Margaret Dumont freezes in time while Groucho has a "strange interlude" and rambles to the audience about the perils of marriage and living with your folks! Of course, the absolutely ancient and decaying print will remind you that "Animal Crackers" is older than the hills, but otherwise, it's much fresher and weirder than the stuff that passes for comedy today.

Like "The Cocoanuts," this movie is based on a play, and as such it is considerably longer and stagier than most of the later Marx movies. The pace does drag a bit towards the end, especially since the plot disappears (along with Zeppo) for long segments at a time. But many of the individual segments are classic, including the often (and rightly) praised bridge game and Harpo's gag with the cutlery-filled sleeves. Even the music segments hold up well, particularly Chico's piano routine that gets savaged by Groucho.

Interestingly, there is a prominent romantic subplot to this film, which puts paid to the fallacy that Marx Brothers movies didn't have romances until MGM got its hands on them. However, the romance isn't nearly as intrusive or annoying here as in their later vehicles, so there's still plenty of reason to be annoyed with good old MGM...


25 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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