6.8/10
562
17 user 10 critic

Six of a Kind (1934)

Passed | | Comedy | 9 February 1934 (USA)
When a respectable middle-class couple take a cross-country trip by auto, they share expenses with a decidedly oddball couple, none of whom know the car carries embezzled funds.

Director:

Leo McCarey

Writers:

Keene Thompson (story), Douglas MacLean (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Charles Ruggles ... J. Pinkham Whinney (as Charlie Ruggles)
Mary Boland ... Flora Whinney
W.C. Fields ... Sheriff John Hoxley
George Burns ... George Edward
Gracie Allen ... Gracie Devore
Alison Skipworth ... Mrs. K. Rumford
Bradley Page ... Ferguson
Grace Bradley ... Goldie
William J. Kelly ... Gillette
Phil Tead ... Clerk in Newspaper Office
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Storyline

The Whinneys share expenses for their trip to Hollywood with George and Gracie and thier Great Dane. A clerk in Whinney's bank has put fifty thousand dollars in a suitcase, hoping to rob Whinney on the road, but instead Whinney takes another road and is arrested in Nevada. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 February 1934 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

I sei mattacchioni See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of over seven hundred Paramount Pictures productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. Local sponsor interest was minimal, and its initial television broadcasts were few and far between. One of its earliest airings took place in Miami Saturday, April 2, 1960 on Comedy Playhouse on WTVJ (Channel 4). It was released on DVD February 4, 2003 as one of three George Burns and Gracie Allen films, and again November 15, 2016 as a single as part of the Universal Vault Series. See more »

Goofs

George Burns' character Name is shown onscreen as "George Edward", but "Edwards" is consistently spoken as his surname. See more »

Quotes

J. Pinkham 'Pinky' Whinney: [Whinney needs his wife's help to close a suitcase] Flora. Bounce.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywood: The Gift of Laughter (1982) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Six Comedians in Clover, but the funniest line belongs to Bradley Page
19 March 2006 | by theowinthropSee all my reviews

It is not always certain that by mixing comedians together you will produce laughter. The comics involved have to actually like or admire each other, or be willing to put up with each other's crankiness. GO WEST with the Marx Brothers had Buster Keaton write the script as a gag man. Groucho did not think too highly of Keaton's ideas, and embarrassed him at a script meeting. And though some of Keaton's gems still appear in the finished film (such as the gun that turns into a brush that turns into a gun) the film was one of the weakest the Marx Brothers ever made.

A better film, but also affected by dueling comic egos, was W.C. Fields and Mae West in MY LITTLE CHICKADEE, which jettisoned the script for a series of duels of one liners between the leads. But the one liners were equally funny, so the film remains a success.

But SIX OF A KIND is an example of six film comics who worked well together. The reason is simple: it is really three comic teams working together: Charlie Ruggles and Mary Boland, George Burns and Gracie Allan, and W.C. Fields and Alison Skipworth. Ruggles and Boland were paired in about half a dozen comedies during the 1930s, usually with Boland as a somewhat bossy wife, and Ruggles as a nervous wreck of a husband. Fields (usually a single act) was paired three times with Skipworth (TILLY AND GUS and IF I HAD A MILLION were the other two times). Skippy always figured out how to control or counter the larcenous activities of her man - it the present film she takes action into her own hands with the stolen money that is being searched for (she knows that the local sheriff, Fields, is not the one to trust with this). As for Burns and Allan they manage to effortlessly involve themselves with the put upon Ruggles and Boland on their cross-country trip by car.

Ruggles quickly gets to realize what a mistake it was to agree to travel with Gracie - at one point she manages to cause him to fall off a cliff, and dangle from a branch. He is relatively helpless when she insists on 1) photographing him on his perch, and 2) correcting his grammar. The presence of George and Gracie's humongous dog ("Ran Tang Tang" is it's name) does not make travel arrangements easier for Charlie and Mary.

Fields has some choice moments. When he insists on shouting at the quartet, he says he's allowed to do so - he's the sheriff! He also explains, during a pool game, the improbable story of how he got his undeserved moniker "Honest John". You have to listen carefully to the tale, as it is interrupted with his attempts to play pool a few times (once getting accidentally beaned by a billiard ball), but it does show that there were items that even Fields would have had no reason to steal.

Oh, in the "Summary Line", I mentioned a forgotten actor named Bradley Page - he was the man who is responsible for the trouble that Charley Ruggles is suspected of. Bradley has to have a reason to leave town in order to catch up with the unwary Ruggles and Boland, so he telephones his girl friend. He tells her to call back his job and say that he has to leave town because somebody has died. There is a pause as he apparently hears a question shot back by the girlfriend. "ANYBODY!", he says - clearly annoyed. Although the bulk of the humor in the film is carried by the sextet of performers, Mr.Page happened to have the most amusingly unexpected line in the film.


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