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Room Service (1938)

Approved | | Comedy | 30 September 1938 (USA)
A penniless theatrical producer must outwit the hotel efficiency expert trying to evict him from his room, while securing a backer for his new play.

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Writers:

(screen play), (from the play by) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Gordon Miller (as The Marx Brothers)
...
Harry Binelli (as The Marx Brothers)
...
Faker Englund (as The Marx Brothers)
...
Christine Marlowe
...
Hilda Manny
...
Leo Davis
...
Joseph Gribble
...
Philip Loeb ...
Timothy Hogarth
Philip Wood ...
Simon Jenkins
Alexander Asro ...
Sasha Smirnoff
...
Dr. Glass
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Storyline

The Marx Brothers try and put on a play before their landlord finds out that they have run out of money. To confuse the landlord they pretend that the play's author has contracted some terrible disease and can't be moved. Originally a stage play, the setting shows it's origins, but this is vintage Marx Brothers. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Better . . . Battier . . . Funnier Than Ever !

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

30 September 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Marx Brothers - Zimmerdienst  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although she seems much older and mature, Ann Miller was actually only 15 years old when she made this film. She had lied about her age and obtained a fake birth certificate when she was about 14 years old, which stated that she was 18. She was so tall, poised and beautiful that she pulled it off. See more »

Goofs

When Gordon Miller calls to reception pretending to be Dr. Glass, he is holding the phone receiver with his right hand. Seconds later, when he is about to hang up, he is holding it with his left hand. See more »

Quotes

Gordon Miller: Wait a minute, suppose one of us got sick?
Harry Binelli: That's the idea! They can't pull a sick man out, it's against the law.
Gordon Miller: Remember, I had kidney trouble at the Astor and gallstones at the Plaza.
Harry Binelli: Oh, those were the happy days!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are shown on doors that flip around for each new screen of names. See more »

Connections

Featured in Lucy and Desi: A Home Movie (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
(circa 1872) (uncredited)
Written by Wallis Willis
Arranged by Henry Thacker Burleigh
Sung by The Marx Brothers, Cliff Dunstan and Donald MacBride with Harpo Marx on harmonica
Reprised by actors in the show
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Neglected Gem
15 February 2006 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Though not one of the Marx Brothers' better known films, "Room Service" is well worth seeing nonetheless. Originally a stage play, it has the distinction of being the only Marx Brothers' film that wasn't originally written by or for the Brothers. However, the film adaptation is seamlessly tailored for the Marxes' stock characters: Groucho, the glib con-man; Chico, the deceptively simple Italian caricature; and Harpo, their anarchic collaborator. The film is very well written, with lots of hilarious gags and pratfalls. Especially memorable is the scene in which the brothers put on multiple layers of clothes as they prepare to decamp their hotel room without paying the bill. Even funnier is the scene in which the brothers, not having eaten for days, frenetically polish off a meal they had arranged to be diverted to their room. Watch Harpo as he madly harpoons peas with his fork and devours them one by one, like a ravenous automaton! In an earlier scene, the boys chase a flying turkey around the hotel room, hoping to make a meal of it. Alas, it flies out the window, whereupon Groucho says, "Never mind, we didn't have any cranberry sauce anyway!"

Unfortunately, the film lacks the usual piano and harp numbers by Chico and Harpo. Regrettable too is the absence of Margaret Dumont, Groucho's legendary "straight woman." Even so, the film is great fun--pure escapism!


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