Review: ‘A Night in Casablanca’

This isn't the best the Marx Bros have made but it's a pretty funny farce.

This isn’t the best the Marx Bros have made but it’s a pretty funny farce.

Postwar Nazi intrigue in Casablanca is the theme, having to do with the handsome French flyer who is under a cloud because of Nazi skullduggery dealing with European loot cached in the Hotel Casablanca. When three of the hotel’s managers get bumped off in rapid succession, Groucho gets the nod. Chico runs the Yellow Camel Co. and Harpo is his mute pal who later breaks the bank in the hotel’s casino and stumbles on the Nazi gold through a mishap with the lift.

Against the desert background of French provincial political bungling and Nazi chicanery the Marxes get off some effective comedy, and some of it not so. The brighter spots are the clown fencing duel; the frustrated tryst between Groucho and Lisette Verea, running from suite to suite, with portable phonograph, champagne cooler, etc; the sequence with the packing cases and clothes closet, prior to the getaway; and finally the air-autotruck chase, winding up back in the same jail from whence all escaped.

A Night in Casablanca


United Artists. Director Archie Mayo; Producer David L. Loew; Screenplay Joseph Fields, Roland Kibbee; Camera James Van Trees; Editor Gregg C. Tallas; Music Werner Janssen; Art Director Duncan Cramer


(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1946. Running time: 85 MIN.


Groucho Marx Harpo Marx Chico Marx Lois Collier Lisette Verea Charles Drake
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