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You Can't Cheat an Honest Man (1939)

Approved | | Comedy | 18 February 1939 (USA)
Larson E. Whipsnade runs a seedy circus which is perpetually in debt. His performers give him nothing but trouble, especially Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy. Meanwhile, Whipsnade's son ... See full summary »

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Larson E. Whipsnade
...
The Great Edgar
...
Charlie
...
Rochester (as Eddie Anderson)
...
Mortimer
...
Victoria Whipsnade
...
Phineas Whipsnade
James Bush ...
Roger Bel-Goodie
...
Mr. Bel-Goodie
Mary Forbes ...
Mrs. Bel-Goodie
...
Corbett
Arthur Hohl ...
Burr
...
Princess Baba
Blacaman ...
Blacaman
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Storyline

Larson E. Whipsnade runs a seedy circus which is perpetually in debt. His performers give him nothing but trouble, especially Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy. Meanwhile, Whipsnade's son and daughter, Phineas and Vicky, attend a posh college. Vicky turns down her caddish but rich suitor Roger Bel-Goodie, but changes her mind when she learns of her father's financial troubles. Will Vicky marry for money or succumb to the ventriloqual charm of Edgar Bergen? Will Whipsnade's Circus Giganticus make it over the state line one jump ahead of the sheriff? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 February 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A mí no me engaña nadie  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Edward Brophy plays a sheriff who tries to deliver a summons to W.C. Fields, only to have it eaten by a circus elephant. Two years later, Brophy provided the voice of Timothy Mouse, the companion of Dumbo the circus elephant in Disney's Dumbo (1941). See more »

Quotes

Man: There's been a mistake in my change.
Whipsnade: Ah, at long last, an honest man. Want to return some money?
Man: No, I'm short!
Whipsnade: Don't brag about it. I'm only five-feet-eight myself.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Edgar Bergen's dummy Charlie McCarthy is credited as Himself. See more »

Connections

Follows Sally of the Sawdust (1925) See more »

Soundtracks

Camptown Races
(uncredited)
Written by Stephen Foster
Sung with substitute lyrics by circus hands
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Edgar & Charlie Steal The Show
29 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Lots of gags and double takes by W.C. Fields dot this comedy. Fields does his normal shtick regarding the mumbling, sometimes mean-spirited insults, double-takes when loud noises occur, which was frequent; scheming people out of money, running from the law, etc. Fields was anything but moral giant which I suppose made him a lovable rascal in the eyes of many. It didn't hurt to have funny names such as this one, either: "Larson E. Whipsnade."

I enjoyed Edgar Bergen's performance more than anyone in here, including W.C., because he gave his famous dummy, "Charlie McCarthy," some of the best lines in the movie. That, and I liked Charlie's laugh.

Like a Marx Brothers film, this didn't have much of storyline, just a bunch of comedy bits by Fields and Bergen, plus a love interest between Bergen and Constance Moore, who played "Whipsnade's" daughter.

Eddie "Rochester" Anderson, from the old Jack Benny television show, also is in here, and sometimes feels the sting of W.C.'s racist remarks, which he could never say today on film, and justifiably so.

It was very entertaining, fast-moving and the best of the Fields movies, I think, even though Edgar and Charlie steal the show. I also think getting a DVD with English subtitles would make it even better, to catch all of W.C.'s lines, some of which are too mumbled to understand.


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