Duck Soup

 (1,120)7.81 h 9 min1933X-Ray13+
A pointed political satire, Duck Soup is the Marx Brothers' funniest and most insane film.
Leo McCarey
Groucho MarxHarpo MarxChico Marx
ComedyArts, Entertainment, and CultureMilitary and War
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Zeppo Marx
Universal Studios
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4.6 out of 5 stars

1120 global ratings

  1. 79% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 12% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 5% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 2% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars

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Top reviews from the United States

Paul CarruthersReviewed in the United States on February 12, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Wash your neck....
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The last Marx Brothers Paramount feature before they got fired and moved to MGM. I vaguely remember the backstory being that this film bombed, thus why the boys were terminated. Why the hell it bombed, I have no idea--this may be their funniest Paramount. The story is simple enough; a fictional country ousts their leader in order to appoint Groucho as the head man in charge, leading to a war & the intro of Chico and Harpo; and I guess Zeppo was there, too.

Too many funny lines and scenes to cover--Be sure to wash your neck, peanuts, Harpo jumping into the lemonade, the running gag with the sidecar, and the war at the end, especially Harpo grabbing Margaret Dumont's ass. And, Harpo's brief encounter with Edgar Kennedy's wife.

The rest of the Marx Brothers career at MGM is debatable, but they got off to a great start with "A Night at the Opera" and "A Day at the Races."
5 people found this helpful
Great UncleReviewed in the United States on September 5, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Banned by Mussolini!
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The last of the Marx Brother Paramount pictures and probably their best. The Paramount movies were wild and loose in comparison to their later work at MGM. I like to think they were more like what you might have gotten if you went to see the Marx Brothers on stage. The plot is nothing more than a framework to attempt to confine the brothers to some vague idea of reality. Groucho is merciless, Chico slyly ignorant and Harpo is anarchy in a trench coat. Margaret Dumont is the worlds greatest straight lady inundated by insults. Edgar Kennedy plays her male equivalent under the onslaught of Harpo and Chico.
This is fun enough to shake you out of your doldrums and see the absurdity of the whole universe.
One person found this helpful
Jakedaboss_58Reviewed in the United States on October 2, 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
Duck Soap - As great a comedy as has ever been!
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One of the 5 or 10 funniest movies ever made. This flick is the entire Marx Brothers. See it and you know their genius. Also Leo McCarey (along with the writers) who was the greatest director they ever worked with. It's the only time they ever worked with him. "Duck Soup" interestingly was the Brothers first financial loss. Thus they hooked up with Irving Thalberg at MGM who knew how to gentrify the Marx Brothers into mainstream box office. Their next two films "Night at the Opera" and "A Day at the Races" are funny enough and made big money. But Thalberg died suddenly and the creative support was gone. The rest of their work is forgettable. "Duck Soup" is a subversively mad-capped one-two punch and raised middle finger to the political / economic structure that created the World War. (That's 1914 to 1945 - it was really one war with a 20 year intermission.) The head long anarchy of the Marx Brothers peaked with this awesome comedy. It is their masterpiece.
15 people found this helpful
WeissReviewed in the United States on January 18, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Watching this brings me back to the good old days
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El Classico right here. This movie is le bomb diggity. Watching this brings me back to the good old days, when Meemaw would bust out her nine-gauge and blast one of them critters right there on the pond. Roofus would then bound in after the dead duck and haul it in, but Meemaw would always fire a shot into the air to make sure he didn't eat it. Then one time Meemaw got confused, and lord knows why Roofus went running into the pond, and Meemaw shot his sorry little behind. I ain't never forgived her for that.

Back to our regularly scheduled review.
This movie really is a timeless classic. It starts off a bit slow with the introductions, but quickly picks up to have you roaring with laughter. You will shed tears, and you may experience stitches in your sides.
3 people found this helpful
The CurmudgeonReviewed in the United States on March 1, 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
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This 1933 movie is one of the best comedies ever made, using the typical Marx Brothers' formula of continuing antics. The title Duck Soup appears to have nothing to do with the rest of the movie.

It takes place in Freedonia, a small hilly country with an old castle, somewhat like Liechtenstein. The country is in trouble and Groucho is called upon to save it as its new leader. Its enemy is neighboring Sylvania, a similar country. Harpo and Chico are Sylvanian spies sent to spy on Groucho but after a while it is hard to tell what side they are on. Groucho then manages to start a war between the two countries.

This movie contains the famous mirror scene, probably the most memorable comedy scene of all time. It also contains Chico's one-liner about taxes and Texas, dollars and Dallas, probably the most memorable comedy line of all time. A surprise is the provocatively revealing dress worn by Raquel Torres, much better than anything worn by Lady Gaga today.
9 people found this helpful
Soup SandwichReviewed in the United States on May 31, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Classic American Schtick
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This is a classic masterpiece. The Marx Brothers take aim at just about every ridiculous institution there is, while giving the audience great schtick. You'll laugh out loud. The musical numbers are beyond ridiculous and you can see where Mel Brookes got his inspiration. I highly recommend watching this movie.
3 people found this helpful
C. T. DixonReviewed in the United States on May 27, 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
Worthy version of a comedy classic
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I'm a Marx Brothers zealot who goes against the grain - I put this in their second tier. Which means it's still leagues beyond anyone else. The musical-comedy trappings of Animal Crackers and A Night at the Opera created a little human interest which actually helped the Marxes. Duck Soup is hilarious but shows the effect of Conscious Brilliance Syndrome: We Must Be As Satiric and Funny Every Second As Possible. In 1933 the anti-war satire was familiar to people, in the disillusionment that followed World War I. Today it seems a little forced. Nevertheless I love it. The situation is right in the Marx's wheelhouse - Groucho as the president of Freedonia, Chico and Harpo as the spies sent to get the goods on him. Some of their best scenes are here and the picture quality is fine.
2 people found this helpful
Barnacle Bill The SailorReviewed in the United States on June 9, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
A classic!
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What can I say that hasn't already been said? I've watched this probably 25 times at this point and I'll probably watch it another 25 times before I die. I still laugh at the jokes. I still love all the character actors. And the cheesy set design still doesn't bother me. It's just funny!
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