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It's in the Bag! (1945)

Passed  |   |  Comedy  |  21 April 1945 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 317 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 12 critic

The ringmaster of a flea circus inherits a fortune...if he can find which chair it's hidden in.

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(screen treatment), (screen treatment), 5 more credits »
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Title: It's in the Bag! (1945)

It's in the Bag! (1945) on IMDb 6.9/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Fred Allen ...
...
...
...
Himself - Guest Star
Victor Moore ...
Victor Moore
...
Rudy Vallee
Binnie Barnes ...
Eve Floogle
Robert Benchley ...
Parker
Jerry Colonna ...
Dr. Greengrass - Psychiatrist
...
Jefferson T. Pike
Gloria Pope ...
Marion Floogle
William Terry ...
Perry Parker
Minerva Pious ...
Mrs. Pansy Nussbaum
Richard Tyler ...
Homer Floogle (as Dickie Tyler)
...
Detective Sully
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Storyline

Wealthy Frederick Trumble makes an eccentric new will, secretes much of his wealth in a chair, then, within seconds, is murdered. The new heir, Fred Floogle, runs a flea circus. Of course, the reputed $12 million inheritance goes to his family's heads...then proves to consist of five chairs, which the disgusted Floogle sells just before discovering their secret. Packed with wisecracks, strange cameos, and nothing-sacred, anything-goes digressions. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 April 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fickle Fortune  »

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

On one of Fred Allen's "Texaco Star Theater" radio broadcasts circa 1941, Allen joked that Don Ameche was playing so many real-life characters in movies, if he wasn't careful Don Ameche would play Don Ameche in a movie one of these days. In this picture, Don Ameche indeed played Don Ameche - in a scene opposite Fred Allen. See more »

Goofs

When Parker is showing the Floogles his son's mousetrap he shows how the entry teeter board works by moving it. After a cut to the Floogles and back to Parker, he's moving the teeter board the same way again. See more »

Quotes

Eve Floogle: You mean last year's diamonds? Oh no, we don't bother with them. You see, we just throw them out. They get so shabby, you know.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Before the final card at the end of the movie, Fred Allen breaks the fourth wall one more time and says to the audience "Folks, you've got to come back to the next show, immediate seats on the inside." See more »

Connections

Version of L'eredità in Corsa (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

Song of the Volga Boat Men
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played instrumental when Fred is carrying Bill Bendix on the shoulders
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Witty and edgy--but strays far from the novel
30 December 2004 | by (Grover Beach, CA) – See all my reviews

Fred Allen was--with the possible exception of his "rival" Jack Benny--the biggest star in the history of radio. He was Letterman to Benny's Leno--an acerbic smartaleck who practically invented topical humor/current political events satire. While he had numerous small film roles and cameos (and later starred in TV's "What's My Line?"), "It's In The Bag" was Fred Allen's only starring role in a motion picture, and it was a good one.

The plot--Allen gaining, then losing, then frantically trying to recover an inheritance hidden inside one or more mystery chairs--is just a skeleton on which to hang the movie's wry jokes, strange interludes and satirical jabs at Hollywood stars. A trainload of radio and film comedians appear in this movie, including Jack Benny (with whom Allen shared a longtime "feud" that was as successful--and as manufactured--as anything the World Wrestling federation ever produced). Author and bon vivant Robert Benchley makes a strong appearance here, and Richard Wallace's steady direction manages to keep up with the comic mayhem.

Allen's irreverent humor, wild tangents and complete disregard for film conventions (including the sacred fourth wall) inspired Mel Brooks, who, drawing from its source material, made a version of "It's In The Bag" as his second feature, "The Twelve Chairs"--although literary purists who love the original darkly satiric Russian novel by Ilf and Petrov, take note: you will likely hate both these movies with a fiery passion. Even faithful Russian screen adaptations of that extraordinary book have failed to capture its greatness, and "It's In The Bag" doesn't even try--it's merely a sardonically humorous sendup of 1940s Hollywood in general and Mr. Allen in particular. It's no intricate Russian literary classic, but if you love vintage Hollywood comedies with an edge, you won't be disappointed.


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