Open Thread: What’s Your Favorite Marx Brothers Film?

Okay classic movie buffs, we’ve got perhaps the toughest Open Thread question for you yet: Are the Marx Brothers history’s greatest comedy team? We’re willing to guess that there are more than a few of you who agree with this assessment. But which of their projects was your favorite? Duck Soup? A Night at the Opera? Animal Crackers? There’s no wrong answer here, but what we’d like to know is which of the Brothers’ pictures are your favorite, and why. So let us know in the comments. And while you’re at it, feel free to share your thoughts on which of the silly siblings you like best as well!

This article originally ran in 2017 and is being reprinted today as part of our ongoing tenth anniversary celebrations.

  • speedle24

    “A Night At The Opera” has to be my favorite because of the backstage contract negotiation scene.

    • garykevinware

      A Night At The Opera as it combines the great comedy with the classical/opera music.

    • Bernard Kuszak

      Don’t you just love the scene before that when Harpo hits the singer in the head and knocks him out, Then he revives him with smelling salts,
      Groucho ” Oh so you feel sorry for what you’ve done”
      Harpo ” nods”
      Then ” WHAM ! ” he hits him again. Catches his head with the mallet as he is falling back to the floor.
      Just love it.

  • Bobby Guthrie

    Without hesitation my favorite Marx Brothers film is “Animal Crackers.” Just about the perfect comedy, as far as I’m concerned. “Hurray for Captain Spaulding” will crack me up everytime. The Brothers are in fine form. From the storyline to the timeperiod to the ages of the actors, I believe that this film captures The Marx Brothers at their prime. Hurray, hurray, hurray!

  • Tom K.

    A Night at the Opera: The scene on the ocean liner in Groucho’s “stateroom” is priceless.

  • Alan Harris

    Duck Soup, which is a brilliant political and anti-war satire.

  • John

    There are more famous flicks of theirs that should be honored and even studied if not emulated outright, and “Monkey Business” was my effective introduction, but “At the Circus” still gets me right…here.

  • williamsommerwerck

    Being a music lover, “A Night at the Opera”. It does a splendid job deflating the ultimate “stuffed shirt” entertainment — along with one of the all-time-great punchlines: “There’s no such thing as Sanity Clause”.

    But I have no argument with anyone preferring “Duck Soup”. These two represent their collective peak.

  • Jill Manz

    Animal Crackers! My husband and I quote from that All The Time! Just brilliant

  • ScottVDB

    I love At the Circus although it places the Marx Bros in a seedier setting which deprives us of Dumont until late in the film. The photography is luminescent.

    I argue AGAINST Duck Soup despite its density of gags. There is good reason it failed in its day. Chico and Harpo antagonize Edgar Kennedy without provocation. Kennedy needs to have started the conflict in order for us to sympathize with the boys. And they are traitors to their country. Groucho antagonizes his cabinet without first setting them up well enough. Although they are a bit pompous, that needed to have been better established. And the script shows a corrupt villain but fails to demonstrate that Groucho could have had any knowledge of this in order to justify his actions. The best Marx Brothers films, like Night at the Opera, set up the boys as sympathetic.

  • Richard Doss

    All of them, back to back!!! To me they will forever be the greatest comedy team EVER!!!

    • Bernard Kuszak

      I have to agree with you there Rich. No one does it better.

  • Kathy Crowe

    A Night at the Opera is the best of them all! Duck Soup for political satire. Coconuts because it was the first of its kind, and Animal Crackers for the fun of it!!

  • Agingcourt

    Night at The Opera and Day at The Races are the obvious choices, but for me, The Big Store has always made me laugh from start to finish. The Roller Skate finish is so well conceived and brilliantly outrageous. Love it!

  • Eamonn Smyth

    Duck Soup.

  • Bryan Ruffin

    A Night At the Opera and Horse Feathers!