Duck Soup (1933)

Duck Soup (1933)

Director: Leo McCarey
Starring: Groucho Marx, Harpo Marx, Chico Marx

A wealthy widow arranges for the appointment of a new prime minister as the country of Freedonia teeters on the brink of war.

Though this is the fifth Marx Brothers movie, it's the first one for me. This marks the final performance of Zeppo in the group (and his role is fairly small in this anyway). It's meant to be a satire of the rise of fascism at the time, but it isn't nearly effective as Charlie Chaplin's The Great Dictator in my opinion. Even if the sociopolitical commentary falls short (and they allegedly weren't aiming for the same sort of statement as Chaplin), this is still a funny often nonsensical little film that showcases the comedic talents of the three core members of the Marx Brothers. I'm particularly fond of Groucho's rapid-fire wisecracks, but I also enjoyed Harpo's pantomime antics and Chico does a good job of playing off both his siblings' styles. The mirror routine by Groucho and Harpo is pretty famous and is one of the highlights of the movie. Definitely give this one a watch. You're bound to get at least a good laugh or two out of it.

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