Filled to bursting point with gags and justly considered one of the top film comedies of all time, this anti-war, anti-nationalist satire is an incredible showcase of the talents of one of the greatest comedic teams in history - the Marx Brothers.
Although the film’s plot is ostensibly about Rufus T. Firefly (Groucho Marx) waging war with a neighbouring country over a trifling matter, the unruly spirit of the Marx Brothers tramples over any attempt at narrative or logic. Zigzagging in a thousand preposterous directions and featuring some of Groucho’s most iconic one-liners (‘I got a good mind to join a club and beat you over the head with it’), everything here is in the absolute service of making you laugh.
Featuring inspired physical comedy (especially the infamous ‘mirror scene’), director Leo McCarey perhaps summed it up best when he later said of his experience making the film, “The most surprising thing was that I succeeded in not going crazy, for I really did not want to work with them: they were completely mad.”
Presented with the support of the Independent Cinema Office and BFI, awarding funds from The National Lottery.