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At the Circus (1939)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Musical | 20 October 1939 (USA)
The Marx Brothers try to help the owner of a circus recover some stolen funds before he finds himself out of a job.

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(screen play)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... J. Cheever Loophole
... Antonio
... 'Punchy'
... Jeff Wilson
... Julie Randall
... Peerless Pauline
... Mrs. Suzanna Dukesbury
... Goliath
... Jardinet
... John Carter
Jerry Maren ... Little Professor Atom (as Jerry Marenghi)
... Whitcomb
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Storyline

Jeff Wilson, the owner of a small circus, owes his partner Carter $10000. Before Jeff can pay, Carter lets his accomplices steal the money, so he can take over the circus. Antonio Pirelli and Punchy, who work at the circus, together with lawyer Loophole try to find the thief and get the money back. Written by Michael Zolk <mzolk@ix.urz.uni-heidelberg.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Keep the world laughing! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 October 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Day at the Circus  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During "Lydia the Tattooed Lady" Groucho Marx sings "Here is Captain Spaulding exploring the Amazon". This is a reference to his character in Animal Crackers (1930). See more »

Goofs

Multiple different-sized actors, in noticeably different gorilla costumes, were used to play Gibraltar the gorilla. See more »

Quotes

Jardinet: I cross the ocean! I am called a dope ring! I race on a train, when I get here, what do I find? Animals. Animals!
Mrs. Suzanna Dukesbury: Animals?
J. Cheever Loophole: Animals! Mrs. Dukesbury's friends are my friends!
See more »

Connections

Featured in TCM Guest Programmer: Penn & Teller (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(1788) (uncredited)
Traditional Scottish 17th century music
Played a bit in the "Swingali" number
See more »

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User Reviews

AT THE CIRCUS (1939) ***
10 October 2004 | by See all my reviews

This was my third time watching AT THE CIRCUS and, the characteristically anaemic leads (who somehow always seem to be able to carry a tune) notwithstanding, I've always been kind of partial to this one (even if the end result is, decidedly, a notch or two below their finest work). Plot and setting provide several opportunities for the Marxes to shine, both as a team and individually: Groucho (as always) is the film's trump card, however, especially in his rendition of 'Lydia, the Tattooed Lady' and the separate scenes he shares with befuddled aristocrat Margaret Dumont and scheming circus performer Eve Arden; other highlights include Groucho and Chico's interrogation of the suspicious-looking dwarf, Chico and Harpo's frenzied search for stolen money in the strong-man's room (while the latter is asleep!), and the typically busy climax in which Dumont receives the ultimate humiliation.

AT THE CIRCUS is the Marxes' third best MGM picture (demonstrating a steady decline for them from picture to picture) but it's still inferior to the later A NIGHT IN CASABLANCA (1946), in my opinion – or any of their early Paramount films, for that matter.


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