The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

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Ribs
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The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#1 Post by Ribs » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:25 am

The Marx Brothers – Chico, Groucho, Harpo and Zeppo – are one of the cornerstones of American comedy. Starting out in vaudeville, they conquered Broadway and the big screen in their own inimitable style, at once innovative, irreverent, anarchic, physical, musical, ludicrous and hilarious.


With the advent of the ‘talkies’, the Brothers signed to Paramount Pictures and brought their stage act to cinema audience. They made five films in five years, all of which are collected here: The Cocoanuts (1929), Animal Crackers (1930), Monkey Business (1931), Horse Feathers (1932) and one of the greatest comedies of all time, Duck Soup (1933).


The Paramount era represents the Marx Brothers at their absolute finest, retaining all of the energy and controlled chaos of their stage shows. Plots are unimportant – it’s the gags, set-pieces and one-liners that matter: “Why a duck?”, “Hello, I Must Be Going”, “Hooray for Captain Spaulding”, “That’s the bunk!”, Horse Feathers’ “Swordfish” scene and classic mirror sequence in Duck Soup.

LIMITED EDITION CONTENTS:

• High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentations of all five features, transferred from original film elements by Universal
• Original 1.0 mono audio
• Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing
• Commentary on The Cocoanuts by film scholar Anthony Slide
• Commentary on Animal Crackers by film historian Jeffrey Vance
• Commentary on Monkey Business by Marx Brothers historian Robert S Bader and Bill Marx, son of Harpo Marx
• Commentary on Horse Feathers by film critic FX Feeney
• Commentary on Duck Soup by Bader and film critic Leonard Maltin
• The Marx Brothers: Hollywood’s Kings of Chaos, a feature-length documentary containing interviews with Leonard Maltin, Dick Cavett and others
• Three excerpts from NBC’s The Today Show featuring interviews with Harpo Marx, Groucho Marx and Bill Marx
• MORE TO BE ANNOUNCED!

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Perfect-bound book featuring new and archival writing on the films

Image

May 15

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Ribs
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers At Paramount 1929 - 1933

#2 Post by Ribs » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:30 am

...Well, I guess we should have seen this coming, but this won't be the first UK double-dip I make for an Academy set and I expect it won't be the last (plus, using my rewards points, I should be able to get it for ~$1.50, which kind of makes up for it)

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domino harvey
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#3 Post by domino harvey » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:55 am

Why is it a must-get? Every extra save the book is on the US release

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Ribs
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#4 Post by Ribs » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:57 am

...I want that book.

(There's also the "more")

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manicsounds
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#5 Post by manicsounds » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:58 am

Depends on what the "more" is. The US set was one of my favorites of last year, even if I am more of a fan of their MGM titles.

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MichaelB
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#6 Post by MichaelB » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:17 pm

domino harvey wrote:Why is it a must-get? Every extra save the book is on the US release
You're not based in the UK, so don't have to run the exchange-rate gauntlet and Customs lottery that might well mean that you end up paying a lot more for the US set than the basic price would suggest.

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Drucker
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#7 Post by Drucker » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:18 pm

What are the chances any of these films show up in 1.19?

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domino harvey
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#8 Post by domino harvey » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:23 pm

MichaelB wrote:
domino harvey wrote:Why is it a must-get? Every extra save the book is on the US release
You're not based in the UK, so don't have to run the exchange-rate gauntlet and Customs lottery that might well mean that you end up paying a lot more for the US set than the basic price would suggest.
Yes, absolutely this is a no-brainer for UK folks

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Banasa
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#9 Post by Banasa » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:49 pm

Per forum curse, I just picked up the US box last week. ](*,)

When I see any extra features revealed, I may consider a triple dip (as I had the DVD box) and I'm a massive mark for these films.

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FrauBlucher
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#10 Post by FrauBlucher » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:53 pm

1- The disc breakdown will be the same as the Universal box?
2- Will there be additional work be done with the masters?
3- And will the discs eventually be sold as standalones?

Costa
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#11 Post by Costa » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:01 pm

I've watched only Duck Soup from Marx Brothers and I didn't like it at all!
Perhaps it's due to that it had a lot of word-jokes and I had Greek subtitles on, so the jokes lost in translation?
I don't know if I should give them another chance.

Although, i admit, I am not a fan of satire films.

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rapta
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#12 Post by rapta » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:07 pm

FrauBlucher wrote:1- The disc breakdown will be the same as the Universal box?
2- Will there be additional work be done with the masters?
3- And will the discs eventually be sold as standalones?
Similar questions of whether they can do their own additional restoration work for their upcoming release of The Thing, but Universal seem to be a bit trickier than other studios in letting independent labels do this (unless they're Criterion or Shout Factory, it seems). Hopefully Arrow have enough sway nowadays that they'll be able to go back to the materials and perform a rescan, otherwise I guess they'll be using the same transfers and trying to minimise any filtering...somehow.

As for standalone releases, when I saw the Amaray cases I assumed it meant they'd get three standalone releases later on, but the booklet part of the specs says "FIRST PRESSING ONLY", which to me implies once the booklet runs out they'll reprint the same box set without the book. However, that would surely need a separate SKU as the packaging would have to be adjusted, right? Would make more sense to release them on their own (Duck Soup at the very least).

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TMDaines
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#13 Post by TMDaines » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:16 pm

Might be similar to Boro: big box w/ book, then individual releases with booklets (which may not encompass the totality of the book material).

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MichaelB
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#14 Post by MichaelB » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:24 pm

TMDaines wrote:Might be similar to Boro: big box w/ book, then individual releases with booklets (which may not encompass the totality of the book material).
I'd say the Woody Allen model of individual releases without booklets is a lot more likely.

But I don't know of any plans for separate releases.

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rapta
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#15 Post by rapta » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:28 pm

Yes, it seems pretty clear the book is exclusive to the first print run of the Limited Edition box set. I doubt they'll get portioned up and slimmed down for any subsequent reissues.

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swo17
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#16 Post by swo17 » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:30 pm

If anything, maybe they'd give Duck Soup a standalone somewhere down the line.

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domino harvey
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#17 Post by domino harvey » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:34 pm

Does anyone else find the title of this box confusing? I kept trying to figure out which four films were only being included

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swo17
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#18 Post by swo17 » Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:37 pm

They must have thought it was more important not to lead on any Gummo Marx fans.

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Ribs
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#19 Post by Ribs » Mon Feb 20, 2017 2:05 pm

It's just taking after the billing used on the Posters that form the covers here (and possibly the title cards of the films?)

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FrauBlucher
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#20 Post by FrauBlucher » Mon Feb 20, 2017 3:41 pm

swo17 wrote:They must have thought it was more important not to lead on any Gummo Marx fans.
The disrespect is a shame. Gummo was always Mamma Marx's favorite.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#21 Post by Roger Ryan » Mon Feb 20, 2017 5:32 pm

I have to think that the original marketing plan to refer to the group as "The 4 Marx Brothers" came about out of concern that audiences would completely forget about Zeppo! In retrospect, the designation is handy to distinguish these films from the subsequent ones that featured Groucho, Chico and Harpo only.

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Werewolf by Night
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#22 Post by Werewolf by Night » Mon Feb 20, 2017 8:34 pm

Costa wrote:I've watched only Duck Soup from Marx Brothers and I didn't like it at all!
You monster!
Costa wrote:Perhaps it's due to that it had a lot of word-jokes and I had Greek subtitles on, so the jokes lost in translation?
Groucho and Chico deal almost entirely in wordplay, absurdism in the case of the former, puns in the latter. You're going to lose a LOT in translation. I'd wager many of the jokes are lost these days even on native English speakers.

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FrauBlucher
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#23 Post by FrauBlucher » Mon Feb 20, 2017 8:48 pm

Unfortunately, the current PC environment does little to help the Marx Brothers gain new fans. I went to see a screening at the Film Forum and there were audience members who grumbled at some of the Margaret Dumont womanhood insults. And the joke where Groucho says to Chico, "I have for you a suite (swede) on the top floor" and Chico responds with, "I'll take a polack in the basement." That drew some noticeable groans.

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matrixschmatrix
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#24 Post by matrixschmatrix » Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:40 pm

Maybe they were groaning because it's an intentionally groanworthy pun

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knives
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Re: The 4 Marx Brothers at Paramount 1929-1933

#25 Post by knives » Mon Feb 20, 2017 10:09 pm


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