At the Circus - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

At the Circus Reviews

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½ September 4, 2017
Not the best Marx Brothers movie by a long shot but even their weaker films are masterpieces. Duck Soup and Night at the Opera are far superior.
January 13, 2017
The Marx Brothers were so fantastic and frantic in their Paramount Days, MGM kind of tamed them. I like "A Night at the Opera" and "A Day at the Races," they had more plot, and less focus on the antics and general nuttiness of the Brothers, but they were still classic Marx humor. But at a certain point, their films felt less madcap and just weren't as much fun to watch. "At the Circus" is only okay...it has some good circus nuttiness and some okay Marx routines, but it is not nearly as hilarious as their earlier efforts. Better than "Go West", but probably on par with "Room Service".
½ September 13, 2016
Featuring a plot involving (surprise) a troubled business venture/missing money and some side characters with nefarious intentions, A very good course corrective after the lackluster Room Service - there is a plot but its more about the set pieces (Harpo and Chico in the guys bedroom as they disastrously look for money, Groucho stuck with his feet on the ceiling, any time Harpo and an animal be it in a suit or not) - though it still lacks the spark of their earlier films.

"Lydia" reaches the lofty heights of their great nonsense songs and fits the circus... An oddly placed reprisal of the black characters surround Harpo and have a jumpy musical number from Day at the Races (which was the odd weak part of that movie) not so much.

In short, it does its job well enough if not spectacularly, however its almost worth ranking with the best for Groucho, upon noticing his wallets been pickpocketed and stuffed between her breasts and knows he has to get it out, says "how can I get it out and stick to the Hayes code?" One of the biggest laughs I've had in years.
November 20, 2015
I want to like this more than I do. But it's another painful combination of not-that-funny Marx routines coupled with forgettable bland singing co-stars. It has it's moments, but Groucho especially doesn't seem fit for a role where he isn't the fast, witty guy pulling the wool over everyone's eyes. Once he's cast as a fall guy and goof, such as being left hanging upside down in a circus tent in one scene calling for help..just so out of character. And the end, where they are all on the trapeze at the end..ugh. Ridiculous. Groucho as victim...nah. Interestingly, one of my favorite of the musical numbers, Lydia the Tattooed Lady, is in this one. Actually, for a guy almost 50, he's pretty high energy..but it was really wasted here, and the Harpo/Chico antics just dont seem as bold and funny.
½ September 23, 2015
Although not considered one of their best films, it still contains some absolutely hilarious lol moments involving Groucho, his rendition of Lydia in song, Dumont, and the animals.
½ August 17, 2015
Some great gags with small house, the train and the whole lullaby sequence. There were some weak points, but hey the Marx brothers make up for it with other wittiness.
August 10, 2015
The plot is threadbare and there are lots of invasive musical moments, but when the movie is funny its hilarious. The cigar scene alone is worth a viewing for this Circus themed Marx bros film.
½ March 13, 2015
Certainly not A NIGHT AT THE OPERA, although Groucho sings "Lydia, the Tattooed Lady."
October 27, 2014
This film gets a lot of flak because it's not one of the trinity of great Marx Brothers films (Duck Soup/A Day at the Races/A Night at the Opera). That being said, it's still a laugh riot that's funnier and more entertaining than 95% of what's thrown out of Hollywood these days as comedies.
½ October 9, 2014
Good ol' Marx Bro's, always fun, even if many of the jokes were very cheezy and the storyline sucked. Even a not so great Marx Bro movie is better than any modern comedies.
April 2, 2014
/) Proof positive MGM was slowly killing the Marx Brothers brand. The film would be a waste of time were it not for the occasional burst of brilliance from Groucho, Harpo and Chico interrupting the bland storyline and the even duller musical interludes, that is, except for Groucho's classic "Lydia, the Tattooed Lady."
½ April 2, 2014
Aficionados will appreciate many of these scenes.
½ March 30, 2014
not one of the better marx bros. pics
May 23, 2013
Thanks to a brazen theft, a dippy circus owner (Kenny Baker) may lose his business to a shifty creditor (James Burke). His salvation comes at the hands of Groucho, Harpo, and Chico. At The Circus has some funny antics, but it's markedly inferior to the films that preceded it. While not terrible, I have high standards for Marx fare and I can't find myself recommending it to anyone but the most zealous of classic comedy buffs.
½ February 25, 2013
Groucho, Chico, and Harpo - A Three Ring Circus--Low on the Marxist totem pole!!
November 24, 2012
Every laugh is sincere, every joke is harsh and every moment is carefully calculated to the second, and everything hits the target.
½ August 7, 2012
Too many old songs mar this comedy, but it still is worth it for the final 20 minutes!
April 20, 2012
An enjoyable Marx Bros. movie. Their comedy still works after all these years. When the antics were happening the movie flowed quite well. Unfortunately, the musical portions stop the movie in its tracks.

While I do enjoy a good musical, the songs are always my least favorite part of a Marx Bros. movie While Lydia the Tattooed Lady is from this movie, and Groucho is fun to watch during that number, the songs with the tenor are of the style of the time, and choreographed simplistically and poorly that they really date the movie. And Harpo playing the Harp is always fun to see, but that number is a complete tangent to the plot.

There is enough funny Marx Bros. here to make it worth the wait through the songs, and you could actually fast forward through them to get to the next scene and not have to worry about missing a plot point; they are that unrelated to the rest of the film. Recommend.
March 31, 2012
Not my favorite Marx Bros. film. It has some funny bits in it, but it's hampered by exposition...and the magic just doesn't seem to be there.
January 17, 2012
Classic Marx Bros. schtick and a great foil in Margaret Dumont. Not to be missed. A gem.
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