Marx Madness hits the Latchis this month

BRATTLEBORO — Hoping to inject a little hilarity into March, Latchis Arts presents Marx Madness, featuring the madcap mayhem of the Marx Brothers in movies by donation on Saturday, March 19 and March 26, at 4 p.m., at the Latchis Theatre.

Marx Madness opens with A Night at the Opera, presented March 19 at 4 p.m. Groucho, Chico, and Harpo Marx take on the world of opera in this hilarious 1935 comedy that the American Film Institute's list of the 100 Greatest American Films of All Time (Number 85). It is No. 12 on AFI's list of the top 100 comedies.

The series continues on Saturday, March 26, at 4 p.m., with Duck Soup, the 1933 film most often hailed as the Marx Brothers' best. Created amid the backdrop of the Depression in America and the rise of fascism abroad, Duck Soup remains, perhaps, a little too relevant to our times, and a perfect jab at our political shenanigans.

Chico, Harpo, and Zeppo add to the mayhem as Groucho, as Rufus T. Firefly, is put in charge of the bankrupt county of Freedonia and proceeds, through his chaotic ineptitude, to make matters worse.

“It turns out that the sharp-tongued humor of Groucho Marx is ageless, the slapstick timely, and the subject matter still pertinent: loony dictatorship, religion, pointless warfare,” wrote Kate Muir in the Times of London.

Duck Soup was ranked No. 60 on AFI's list of the top 100 American Movies of All Time; it ranked No. 5 on the list of top 100 Comedies.

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