Film #19 of Project 30
”Hey, don't drink that poison! That's $4.00 an ounce!”
Anarchy. That is the key concept in the universe of Marx Brothers. Their comedy is built around mayhem and chaos, they don’t pay attention to any kind of discipline and with an insane and wild sense of humor they symbolically restructure and rebuild the boring world we’re living in. The final 20 minutes or so of A Day at the Races is a great example of…
Of the Marx Brothers films with endless musical sequences (all of them?), A Day at the Races may be the worst offender, not just containing a barn dance that went on so long I dozed off briefly, but throwing in the trio in blackface for good measure. Other than that, though, it's one of their funniest films.
although the plot was a little inflated, "a day at the races" has been the funniest marx brother movie i've seen yet.
it has it all; wisecracks from chico, slapstick from harpo and innuendo like no other from groucho.
i really enjoyed the film and all it had to offer. rarely does a movie make me cackle and roll around the floor but this one really did.
this film gets a 3/5, i think it's a fair score because although…
more like "A Day at the Racist." Well, not really, but it's the only Marx Brothers movie I can think of that has blackface and stereotypical, retrograde depiction of African Americans. More problematic in regards to my enjoyment is the bloat. For all of the story development, settings, and Hollywood polish this has compared to their earlier films, the best sequences are still just the Marx Brothers going bananas on a sound stage. The "tootsie-frootsi ice cream salesman" sequence may…
Probably the most efficient Commercial Marx Bros Delivery Device there is (despite its inflated running time), for good and for bad. The good is that on the level of individual bits, this is near the top of the heap, with the "Tutsi Fruitsy" routine getting my vote for number 1 Marx Bros jam of all time. The bad is that it's completely merciless in trying to make the Brothers "likeable" at all costs, regardless of entertainment value. From what I…
How have I never seen a Marx Brothers film? Take away my movie buff card!
The comedic set pieces are predictably excellent and fine-tuned, without losing any of the chaotic, anything-can-happen feel. I was surprised to be so thoroughly entertained in other areas, with song, dance, even a little romance.
I'm looking forward to watching the rest of the Marx movies soon.
Performances : 6.9/10
Story : 7.1/10
Production : 7.2/10
Overall : 7.07/10
Finally, a post Paramount Pictures Marx Brothers film that I really enjoyed. Apparently after the Paramount contract ended the Marx brothers were told that their new releases would have to feature more of a "standard" story line. These movies included A Night at the Opera, A Night In Casablanca, and A Day at the Races. While the others came off almost too structured, making room for serious moments…
Grucho Marx, ladies and gentlemen. The man is on fire with hilarious one-liner after the other. Sadly, the film is bogged down with idiotic romantic subplots, lengthy musical numbers (why?) and finally, good ol' fashion classic cinema racism.
Still, I love you Grucho.
Some observations on this film:
"Hey, don't drink that poison! That's $4.00 an ounce!"
"May I examine this, please? Do you actually give those to your patients? Isn't it awfully large for a pill?"
"Well, it was too small for a basketball, and I didn't know what to do with it. Say, you're awfully large for a pill yourself."
"We come to hang the paper."
"How about hanging yourselves?"
"You've got it all wrong. This is my aunt. She's come to talk over some old family matters."
"I wish I had an aunt look like that."
"Well, take it up with your uncle."
This seems to be well-regarded among Marx brothers fans, but I've never been too impressed. At 109 minutes, this is their longest film by over ten minutes, and it certainly feels like it, with at least a couple musical sequences too many. And there may be one or two great sequences -- Chico's con artistry is the standout -- but for the most part the comedy feels pedestrian to me. The gamble that paid off so well in A Night…