7.6/10
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Animal Crackers (1930)

Mayhem and zaniness ensue when a valuable painting goes missing during a party in honor of famed African explorer Captain Spaulding.

Director:

Victor Heerman

Writers:

George S. Kaufman (based on the musical play by), Morrie Ryskind (based on the musical play by) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
The Marx Brothers
Groucho Marx ... Captain Jeffrey Spaulding
Harpo Marx ... The Professor
Chico Marx ... Signor Emanuel Ravelli
Zeppo Marx ... Horatio Jamison
Lillian Roth ... Arabella Rittenhouse
Margaret Dumont ... Mrs. Rittenhouse
Louis Sorin ... Roscoe Chandler
Hal Thompson Hal Thompson ... John Parker
Margaret Irving ... Mrs. Whitehead
Kathryn Reece Kathryn Reece ... Grace Carpenter
Robert Greig ... Hives
Edward Metcalfe ... Hennessey
The Music Masters The Music Masters ... Six Footmen
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Storyline

Captain Spaulding, the noted explorer, returns from Africa and attends a gala party held by Mrs. Rittenhouse. A painting displayed at that party is stolen, and the Marxes help recover it. Well, maybe 'help' isn't quite the word I was looking for--this is the Marx Brothers, after all... Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The maddest comics of them all! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 September 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Animal Crackers See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the few The Marx Brothers movies in which the fact that Chico Marx is obviously not truly Italian is referenced. When Chico is questioning Abie the fish-man (alias Roscoe W. Chandler) about his new identity, Chandler suddenly replies "Say, how did you get to be Italian?" See more »

Goofs

In the opening scenes Hives turns to speak to Mrs. Rittenhouse after his opening song, and his waistcoat is different. It continues to swap from one style to another throughout the movie. See more »

Quotes

Capt. Spaulding: Play that song about the Irish chiropodist.
Ravelli: Irish chiropodist?
Capt. Spaulding: "My Fate Is In Your Hands".
See more »

Alternate Versions

Censored for a 1936 reissue to meet Production Code requirements; this censored version was the only one available for television showings and subsequent VHS/DVD releases. A surviving complete and uncensored print was found in England, and is the source being used for the 2016 blu-ray release. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Daffy Over You
(1930) (uncredited)
Written by Chico Marx and Sol Violinsky
Performed by Chico Marx on piano
See more »

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User Reviews

Unrefined But Lots of Fun
14 June 2001 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

One of the Marx Brothers' earliest films, "Animal Crackers" is not nearly as refined as some of their later comic masterpieces, but it is a lot of fun. Some of the sequences are just as good as anything in their greatest films.

As in most of their movies, the actual plot is amusing but simple, and serves mostly as an excuse to tie together the various comic bits and songs. Compared with their later movies, this one seems much more stage-bound, and there is more screen time given to the other actors, slowing things down somewhat. But when Groucho, Harpo, Chico, and Zeppo get their chance, they usually deliver.

Particularly funny in this one is a hilarious bridge game that matches Harpo and Chico against two society women. Zeppo gets a few good moments, too, as the secretary to "Captain Spaulding" (Groucho). And of course Captain Spaulding's theme song is always a favorite.

Though the Marx Brothers would later make even better movies, "Animal Crackers" is great entertainment in its own right, and well worth watching.


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