The film "Duck soup," is a classic example of the humour of the Marx Brothers, taking a satirical and anarchic look at war and world power. This was their last film made for Paramount Pictures, and the last film to feature the fourth brother, Zeppo.
When Groucho Marx's character, Rufus T. Firefly, is appointed leader of fictional country Freedonia, he immediately becomes the subject of plot when Trentino, leader of neighbouring fictional country Sylvania, hires two spies, played by Chico and Harpo Marx, to bring disgrace to Firefly. However, nothing goes according to plan when Chico is appointed secretary of war, Harpo becomes Firefly's chauffeur, and the two countries declare war on each other simply because of Firefly's constant insults to Trentino.
The wacky and far-fetched storyline is just what you would expect from a Marx Brothers film. There's Groucho doing what he always did best; his fast-talking wisecracks, his abilty to insult everyone and anyone, and to eventually get away with it. The title "Duck soup" means something that is easy to do, perhaps implying how Firefly governs the country with a happy-go-lucky manner, and how everything he does in his favour could be purely down to luck.
In my personal opinion, Chico and Harpo perform their best double act in this film, and you only have to look at such scenes as the one with the lemonade seller as proof. The film is full of gags, puns, routines, and of course, improvisation. These all contribute to attack democracy, war itself, leadership, and legal systems.
As for the Marxes characters themselves, sure they're selfish, sure they're destructive, but somehow, that's what makes them lovable and somewhat admirable; their anarchic nature in this film, often poking fun at those higher in authority, is something that many people I'm sure would love to do.
"Duck soup" is my favourite film of all time, and it never ceases to put me in a good mood. If you want to see a film that is intelligent as well as hilarious, or if you simply want to find out what is so good about the Marx Brothers, I suggest you see this film.