Professor Quincy Adams Wagstaff has just been installed as the new president of Huxley College. His cavalier attitude toward education is not reserved for his son Frank, who is seeing the college widow, Connie Bailey. Frank influences Wagstaff to recruit two football players who hang out in a speakeasy, in order to beat rival school Darwin. Unfortunately, Wagstaff mistakenly hires the misfits Baravelli and Pinky. Finding out that Darwin has beaten him to the "real" players, Wagstaff enlists Baravelli and Pinky to kidnap them, which leads to an anarchic football finale.Written by
Rick Gregory <email@example.com>
The scene where the Marxes burn down the college, though dropped before any release, is still described in the exhibitor's press kit for exploitation materials. See more »
Groucho asks the coed to get up so he "can see the son rise." She does, uncovering Zeppo, who also rises. Back to Groucho for a quick comment. Next shot is Zeppo saying "Hello, Old Timer!," still seated, with the coed back in his lap. See more »
While this film ISN'T as famous as DUCK SOUP or A NIGHT AT THE OPERA, it's my personal favorite. I think it's probably because unlike these other two pictures, there isn't all the singing and dancing in HORSE FEATHERS plus it has at least as much energy as any other film they made. Plus, unlike THE COCOANUTS and ANIMAL CRACKERS, there is a real honest-to-goodness plot!!! So, it's not just one gag after another after another.
Groucho is wonderful as the incompetent and perpetually horny Professor Wagstaff at Huxley College. Plus, as idiots mistaken for professional ringers, Chico and Harpo are at their best. Oh, and I guess Zeppo is in the movie, but as in all their early Zeppo films, he is pretty much a non-entity. You can really see why he never caught on as one of the Marx Brothers (nor did his other brother, Karl, who was by far the LEAST funny Marx Brother).
About the only negative about the film is the climactic football game. Even for a Marx Brothers film, this does get a little too stupid! But, the rest of the movie is so good, you really don't mind.
UPDATE: I just saw this film on the big screen and upon viewing it again, I am reducing the score to 8. Yes, it is good for the Marx Brothers but the plot, such as it is, is barely a plot at all, the film's ending is bizarre and senseless and a few of the jokes a bit less funny after re-watching. Still good and still worth seeing if you just turn off your brain and enjoy all the nonsense.
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