MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 29,949 this week

What! No Beer? (1933)

Passed  -  Comedy  -  10 February 1933 (USA)
5.5
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.5/10 from 291 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 3 critic

Two men decide to cash in on the end of Prohibition by selling watered down beer.

Director:

Writers:

(original story by), (screen play by), 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $14.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

Staff Picks: Favorite Horror Movies

We asked IMDb staffers to provide their favorite horror movies.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 1334 titles
created 15 Oct 2011
 
list image
a list of 128 titles
created 13 Feb 2012
 
a list of 296 titles
created 30 Mar 2012
 
a list of 53 titles
created 27 Jun 2012
 
list image
a list of 137 titles
created 02 Jul 2012
 

Related Items

Search for "What! No Beer?" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: What! No Beer? (1933)

What! No Beer? (1933) on IMDb 5.5/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of What! No Beer?.

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An unimpressive but well intending man is given the chance to marry a popular actress, of whom he has been a hopeless fan. But what he doesn't realize is that he is being used to make the actress' old flame jealous.

Directors: Edward Sedgwick, Buster Keaton
Stars: Buster Keaton, Dorothy Sebastian, Edward Earle
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Buster, the eldest son in a family of hillbillies who manage a hotel, attempts to raise money to save the hotel from foreclosure.

Directors: Buster Keaton, Charles Lamont
Stars: Buster Keaton, Myra Keaton, Al St. John
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.2/10 X  

Frankie, on naval-reserve duty in Tahiti, doesn't trust Dee Dee to stay faithful, so he hires Bwana, a witch doctor, to help. Bwana conjures up a floating bikini, "stuffs" it with Cassandra... See full summary »

Director: William Asher
Stars: Annette Funicello, Dwayne Hickman, Brian Donlevy
Certificate: Passed Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A man tries passing off a socially awkward fellow as a Casanova in the hopes of marrying off his would be sister-in-law.

Director: Edward Sedgwick
Stars: Buster Keaton, Charlotte Greenwood, Reginald Denny
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

In the fourth of the highly successful Frankie and Annette beach party movies, a motorcycle gang led by Eric Von Zipper kidnaps singing star Sugar Kane managed by Bullets, who hires ... See full summary »

Director: William Asher
Stars: Frankie Avalon, Annette Funicello, Deborah Walley
Go West (1925)
Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

With little luck at keeping a job in the city a New Yorker tries work in the country and eventually finds his way leading a herd of cattle to the West Coast.

Director: Buster Keaton
Stars: Buster Keaton, Howard Truesdale, Kathleen Myers
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Starting in 1913 movie director Connors discovers singer Molly Adair. As she becomes a star she marries an actor, so Connors fires them. She asks for him as director of her next film. Many silent stars shown making the transition to sound.

Directors: Irving Cummings, Buster Keaton, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Alice Faye, Don Ameche, J. Edward Bromberg
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Buster Keaton shoes horses and repairs cars, with mixed results.

Directors: Buster Keaton, Malcolm St. Clair
Stars: Buster Keaton, Virginia Fox, Joe Roberts
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Star-packed promotional short subject intended to raise funds for the National Variety Artists tuberculosis sanatorium, produced in association with a cigarette company! Plot involves the ... See full summary »

Directors: William C. McGann, John G. Adolfi, and 4 more credits »
Stars: Norma Shearer, Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Musical remake of 1940 "Shop Around the Corner" by Lubitch.

Directors: Robert Z. Leonard, Buster Keaton
Stars: Judy Garland, Van Johnson, S.Z. Sakall
Film (1965)
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A twenty-minute, almost totally silent film (no dialogue or music one 'shhh!') in which Buster Keaton attempts to evade observation by an all-seeing eye. But, as the film is based around ... See full summary »

Director: Alan Schneider
Stars: Buster Keaton, Nell Harrison, James Karen
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
Director: Wolfgang Staudte
Stars: Axel von Ambesser, Ruth Lommel, Gretl Schörg
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Elmer J. Butts
...
Jimmy Potts
Roscoe Ates ...
Schultz (as Rosco Ates)
Phyllis Barry ...
Hortense
John Miljan ...
Butch Lorado
Henry Armetta ...
Tony
Edward Brophy ...
Spike Moran
Charles Dunbar ...
Mulligan
Charles Giblyn ...
Chief
Edit

Storyline

Although he has never met her, Elmer Butts loves Hortense secretly and from afar. He dreams of making a million dollars so he can buy her a Rolls automobile and marry her. With prohibition apparently on the verge of ending, Elmer's friend Jimmy Potts gets an idea to make them both rich by opening a brewery just before the legalization of alcoholic beverages. Their timing is off, and the police raid them, but their inept brewing has created a beer with no alcohol, so they are let off. But it has also resulted in a cheaply made beer, and bootlegger Spike Moran realizes that he can vastly increase his profits by partnering with Elmer and Jimmy. But none of them reckons with the competitor, another bootlegger, gangster Butch Lorado. Butch has a girlfriend....Elmer's dream girl, Hortense. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HAVE YOU HEARD THE GOOD NEWS YET? When it was announced that a picture would be produced, based on the return of beer, the public besieged theatres with inquiries about it. It's here now with those funny "Speak Easily" boys bringing you 100% laughs from 4% beer. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Passed
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 February 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amor... e Cervejas  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

References Seven Chances (1925) See more »

Soundtracks

Happy Days Are Here Again
(1929) (uncredited)
Music by Milton Ager
Played by a band at the end
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
What! No Laughs?
21 July 2014 | by (Greenwich, CT United States) – See all my reviews

Buster Keaton's last starring Hollywood feature is all about the joy of unrestricted boozing, but leaves a sour aftertaste.

Taxidermist Elmer J. Butts (Buster) decides to invest his life savings on what pal Jimmy Potts (Jimmy Durante) calls "the idea of a century...a bonzana," namely brewing beer to satisfy the public's appetite after voting down Prohibition. "A hundred and twenty cracked lips are straining at the leash," Jimmy says. The problem is Prohibition is not yet officially repealed, putting Elmer and Jimmy in the gunsights of both gangsters and the police.

Durante and Keaton had already made two comedies together, and while at least one of them, "Speak Easily" (despite the title, not about Prohibition or drinking) is modestly amusing, "What! No Beer?" is a painful demonstration of their lack of chemistry, and Keaton's poor condition as divorce and drink took their toll. Keaton is almost inanimate for much of the movie, while Durante overcompensates with his signature malaprops and heavy body English.

In one scene, Elmer and Jimmy try to make beer in an abandoned brewery with the help of some hobos. By now, Buster's screen persona had been reduced to fey simpleton. Told to add a can of malt extract to their mixture, he throws the entire can into the tub. Later, he tries to cap bottles with a hammer, crushing them into shards. There's also a fire hose that gets everyone wet.

Later on, Elmer and Jimmy face some angry cops about to put them away for their illicit brewing. While Jimmy rants up a storm, Buster struggles silently to keep his balance, handcuffed to his friend. It's supposed to be funny because Buster falls down a lot, but it hurts to watch him so badly used as a prop.

Was Buster drunk through the entire film? One suspects he was at best hung over, as his facial reactions are frequently slow and unsteady. Facing the steamroller that was Durante, he seems resigned to his sad fate most of the way. One scene, where Jimmy explains he is only making fake "St. Louis Beer," exposes Buster in clearly soused condition. He is in no shape here to make the kind of comedy Keaton was a master of, even when the subject is alcohol. Potts is the one character in this film we are supposed to think is not a drinker.

Durante's material is little better. Apparently, the creative team just let him rip with his "hot-cha-chas" and hoped audiences would be forgiving. Told by Elmer that one of the stuffed animals is a kangaroo, "a native of Australia," Jimmy smacks his forehead and exclaims: "My sister married one of them!"

However weak the joke, someone at M-G-M must have liked it, as it gets three callbacks later in the movie.

Director Edward Sedgwick was the credited helmer of "The Cameraman," Buster's great comedy made just five years before. It's hard to believe Sedgwick could do no better for his old star than recycle quality gags from "Seven Chances" and "Spite Marriage" in diluted form. But that's what happens here.

I enjoyed one line of Durante's, when he tells Elmer that they don't have to come up with real money to buy their brewery: "This is high finance. You don't have to pay cash." Phyllis Barry reminds me of Kay Francis and delivers some sexy presence late in the film, but she did no better than Buster as her Hollywood career sank after this.

In the end, there's a big build-up that comes out of left field to save our heroes, followed by a rare bit of political commentary from M-G-M when Durante proclaims Prohibition's coming end. It's one valid moment in a painfully contorted affair; Buster's sad fate here offers ample evidence how Prohibition only worsened the condition of problem drinkers.


0 of 0 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss What! No Beer? (1933) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?