A Night in Casablanca

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Total Count: 7


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Movie Info

After a five-year absence, the Marx Brothers returned to the screen in the independently-produced effort A Night in Casablanca. Originally conceived as a parody of Casablanca (with character names like "Humphrey Bogus" and "Lowen Behold"), the film emerged as a spoof of wartime melodramas in general. Someone has been methodically murdering the managers of the Hotel Casablanca, and that someone is escaped Nazi war criminal Heinrich Stubel (Sig Ruman). Disguised as a Count Pfefferman, Stubel intends to reclaim the stolen art treasures that he's hidden in a secret room somewhere in the hotel, and the only way he can do this undetected is by bumping off the managers and taking over the hotel himself. The newest manager of Hotel Casablanca is former motel proprietor Ronald Kornblow (Groucho Marx), who, blissfully unaware that he's been hired only because no one else will take the job, immediately takes charge in his own inimitably inept fashion. Corbacchio (Chico Marx), owner of the Yellow Camel company, appoints himself as Kornblow's bodyguard, aided and abetted by Stubel's mute valet Rusty (Harpo Marx). In his efforts to kill Kornblow, Stubel dispatches femme fatale Beatrice Reiner (Lisette Verea) to romance the lecherous manager, leading to a hilarious recreation of a key comedy sequence in the Marxes' earlier A Day at the Races. Arrested on a trumped-up charge, Kornblow, Corbacchio and Rusty escape in time to foil Stubel and his stooges. As in most Marx Brothers epics, A Night in Casablanca includes a tiresome romantic subplot, this time involving disgraced French flyer (Pierre) and his faithful sweetheart Annette (Lois Collier). Though hampered by listless direction and witless one-liners, A Night in Casablanca contains enough hilarity to compensate for its many flaws; some of the best visual gags were conceived by an uncredited Frank Tashlin, including Harpo's legendary "holding up the building" bit.


Critic Reviews for A Night in Casablanca

All Critics (7) | Fresh (4) | Rotten (3)

Audience Reviews for A Night in Casablanca

  • Sep 05, 2010
    Not the best of the Marx Brothers movies, but it is really funny, and I recommend seeing it if you're a fan.
    Aj V Super Reviewer
  • Jan 15, 2009
    Now I love the Marx Brothers but this feels a little forced. This isn't horrible, not by a long shot, but it's no <i>Duck Soup</i> either. Sort of a conglomerate rehash of bits we've seen before.
    Randy T Super Reviewer
  • Jun 14, 2008
    --Call me Montgomery. --Is that your name? --No. I'm just breaking it in for a friend.
    a b Super Reviewer
  • Aug 20, 2007
    All Marx Brothers movies revolve around their vaudevillian comedy routines. The settings and locations are almost incidental, making all their films very similar and still each one is unique. <i>A Night in Casablanca</i> is hilariously funny, even after more than 60 years. You never hear it mentioned in the same breath with earlier Marx classics like <i>Duck Soup</i> or <i>A Night at the Opera</i>, but you should.
    Kevin S Super Reviewer

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