In 1930 this may have been a welcome distraction from Depression Era hum-drum life. I tried to find the same amusement a lifetime later, and can't agree with the critics. Aside from a few clever (even risque) jokes, I was missing the rolling-on-the-floor-with-laughter effect. Animal Crackers left me only with luke-warm feelings, while I found the "other" Marx Brothers Classic, "Duck Soup" hilarious. I would rather see "Duck Soup" 5 more times than view "Animal Crackers" ever again. Not a total loss of 1 1/2 time, but don't expect any "mirror scenes", because this one has none!***
For those who have never seen a Marx Bros. movie, this is a good starting point. In "Animal Crackers" the Marx brothers follow their classic comedic formula which brought them to stardom: the wacky brothers mess with every person around them while they provoke chaos and misunderstandings. Groucho as always, shoots funny and clever sentences so fast that his mouth looks like a machinegun, Harpo without saying a single word provokes rage among men, and fear among women, Chico delivers doses of anarchy and Zeppo tries in vain to calm down his insane brothers.
"Animal Crackers" is a good comedy, and without a doubt the fans of the Marx Brothers will enjoy this movie even more. If you haven't seen a Marx brothers movie, this is a good choice, but the best choice would be "Duck Soup".
HOORAY FOR CAPTAIN SPAULDING! is,of course,one of cinema's SIGNUM theme songs.(Monty Norman considered jazzing-it for his 007 theme).Many Marxist films are certainly worthy of serious study. But...if you only view one...You Bet Your Life this is the winner!