Comedy Film Festival 2012

“Duck Soup”

Harpo, Chico and Groucho Marx in "Duck Soup" (Paramount, 1933)

Harpo, Chico and Groucho Marx in "Duck Soup" (Paramount, 1933)

“Duck Soup” (Paramount, 1933). A crazy satire that rips on politics, dictators, war and everything else in room. Groucho Marx plays the newly appointed leader/dictator of the country of Freedonia. Harpo and Chico Marx play spies (masquerading as peanut salesmen) from the neighboring country of Sylvania. And the subdued (at least on screen) Zeppo Marx plays advisor to brother Groucho. (How did the quiet, calm Zeppo ever survive being in this family?) The jokes, gags and insults are non-stop. I read from multiple sources that Mussolini banned the film in Italy, much to the Marx Brothers’ delight. Written by Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby. Directed by Leo McCarey. “I didn’t come here to be insulted.” “That’s what you think.”

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