Monkey Business

Laughing days are here again!

Music Comedy
77 min     6.961     1931     USA


Four stowaways get mixed up with gangsters while running riot on an ocean liner.


CinemaSerf wrote:
The four Marx brothers smuggle themselves aboard an ocean liner in barrels and proceed to cause a modicum of havoc on the ship before cleverly avoiding immigration officials in New York and ending up embroiled in a turf war between rival gangsters that sees one of their number's daughter kidnapped - and our hapless comics seem the most likely to save the day, and the gal! Now I'm not really a fan of this kind of humour, I just don't find it funny - but one has to admire the sheer precision of their performance. The quickly paced, expertly choreographed "spontaneity" of it all is precise and impressive. The four brothers (perhaps Zeppo, not so much) each have an unique sort of characterisation to bring to the mix, and Harpo manages a turn on the harp with some skill too. It's the very precision of it all that renders it sterile for me; it could be a comedic ballet with everything so meticulously planned and executed. The humour - which misses just as often as it hits - just seems incidental to their expertise in purveying it - and that didn't work for me either. Zany? Maybe... Funny? Not really...