The Gorilla (1939)

The Gorilla (1939)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Gorilla Photos

Movie Info

When Fox bought the rights to Ralph Spence's warhorse stage mystery-comedy The Gorilla for the Ritz Brothers, they walked out en masse, refusing to work on the picture until their contracts were renegotiated and the script heavily rewritten. The finished product features an escaped circus gorilla apparently perpetrating a series of murders. Imperiled lawyer Walter Stevens (Lionel Atwill) may well be the next victim, so he summons detectives Garrity, Harrigan and Mullivan (Jimmy, Harry and Al Ritz) to provide protection. It turns out that (a) the murderer is human rather than simian, (b) Stevens is hardly a paragon of virtue, and (c) the person really in danger is young heiress Norma Denby (Anita Louise). Long unavailable for reappraisal, The Gorilla resurfaced on the public-domain market in 1976.
Classics , Comedy , Horror , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
20th Century Fox Film Corporation

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Patsy Kelly
as Kitty, the Maid
Anita Louise
as Norma Denby, Steven's Niece
Lionel Atwill
as Walter Stevens
Jimmy Ritz
as Garrity
Harry Ritz
as Harrigan
Al Ritz
as Mulligan
Bela Lugosi
as Peters
Joseph Calleia
as Stanger
Edward Norris
as Jack Marsden
Wally Vernon
as Seaman
Paul Harvey
as Conway
Art Miles
as The Gorilla
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for The Gorilla

All Critics (3)

A short and sweet horror comedy that garners a few laughs, and some fun horror tropes.

Full Review… | November 1, 2014
Cinema Crazed

Unusual adaptation of a play, with remarkable camera technique.

Full Review… | August 8, 2008
Classic Film and Television

The Ritz Brothers are a low-rent version of the Marx Brothers.

Full Review… | April 23, 2005
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for The Gorilla

A wealthy man hires three cowardly detectives (the Ritz Brothers) to protect him from a killer known as the Gorilla (who may be an actual gorilla). The Ritz Brothers are a second-rate comedy team, but this old dark house comedy is light and busy enough to provide some small entertainment.

Greg S
Greg S

Super Reviewer

This film was far more then I expected. From the Sons of Kong 10 Movie Collection, Here I thought it would be another Jungle movie filmed before 1940 a copy cat of the so many others in that time frame. I was so wrong, what you have here is a Mystery / Comedy. Its enjoyable to say the least. There is a 3 man comedy team in this one that is right up there with the three stooges, just very surprised I never saw more of these three. There are people being murdered in the city and the blame seems to fall on a gorilla, but is he really the one. 4 Stars for this one, quite high for a film from 1939

Bruce Bruce
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

It's a lot of fun and the characters are decent but the 3 comedy detectives feel unnecessary to the story beyond being comic relief. It's still pretty interesting and a fun film to watch.

Wes Shad
Wes Shad

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