A DAY AT THE RACES<br />
A NIGHT AT THE OPERA<br />
ROOM SERVICE<br />
A NIGHT IN CASABLANCA

These would make a great box set, but unfortunately the Archives haven&#8217;t been interested in such things, apparently.

Published by

Dick

member

Billy Batson

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Feb 19, 2008
Messages
3,522
Location
London
Real Name
Alan
And I'd add, At The Circus. They were almost guest stars in their own film by then, but I do enjoy this one. There's Lydia, the Tattooed Lady & the scene where Chico is stopping Groucho from boarding the train (in the rain) is classic Marx Brothers. It is a (low down dirty) shame that none of these films have made it onto Blu-ray yet.

As far as I can see, the two most shown scenes of all the Marx Brothers films are from A Night At The Opera; the sanity clause scene & the packed ships cabin scene. No Blu-ray!

I'm glad I still have my DVDs.
 
Last edited:

Traveling Matt

Supporting Actor
Joined
Sep 1, 2006
Messages
736
I, too, have the boxed-set; but I’d scoop it up all over, again, if Warner’s could simply move it over to Blu. :thumbs-up-smiley:
Agreed. I've been wanting these just as long as the Paramount films. A Night at the Opera especially as it's my all-time favorite comedy. It would be incredible if they found and restored the beginning of the opening scene that's been missing probably since its original release.
 

Ronald Epstein

Founder
Owner
Joined
Jul 3, 1997
Messages
55,833
Real Name
Ronald Epstein
I would love to see a Blu-ray set from Warner or select releases from Criterion.

I love the Marx Brothers. Their movies were a huge part of my childhood.

That being said, I was never a huge fan of their MGM onwards era.

I prefer the outright zaniness of their early 30s releases, most specifically DUCK SOUP and HORSEFEATHERS which I think are the two best films out of their entire catalog.

I am kind of optimistic we will see HD releases of NIGHT AT THE OPERA and DAY AT THE RACES. The others are "iffy" but certainly plausible should Warner release a boxed set. Of course, that might not happen if Criterion has the rights to certain titles.
 

Robert Crawford

Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Dec 9, 1998
Messages
48,316
Location
Michigan
Real Name
Robert
That being said, I was never a huge fan of their MGM onwards era.

I prefer the outright zaniness of their early 30s releases, most specifically DUCK SOUP and HORSEFEATHERS which I think are the two best films out of their entire catalog.

I am kind of optimistic we will see HD releases of NIGHT AT THE OPERA and DAY AT THE RACES. The others are "iffy" but certainly plausible should Warner release a boxed set. Of course, that might not happen if Criterion has the rights to certain titles.
@Ronald Epstein Did you purchase those two HD digitals from iTunes?
 

BobO'Link

Lead Actor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 3, 2008
Messages
6,657
Location
Mid-South
Real Name
Howie
I would love to see a Blu-ray set from Warner or select releases from Criterion.

I love the Marx Brothers. Their movies were a huge part of my childhood.

That being said, I was never a huge fan of their MGM onwards era.

I prefer the outright zaniness of their early 30s releases, most specifically DUCK SOUP and HORSEFEATHERS which I think are the two best films out of their entire catalog.

I am kind of optimistic we will see HD releases of NIGHT AT THE OPERA and DAY AT THE RACES. The others are "iffy" but certainly plausible should Warner release a boxed set. Of course, that might not happen if Criterion has the rights to certain titles.
I want them all.

I fear that if Criterion gets a few we'll never see the rest of them in a HD format. Warner needs to step up and release the entire collection on BR. Nothing else will satisfy me as I love all of their movies, even the "lesser" ones.

A complete Warner box set of all 7 films on BR would be a day 1 purchase for me. If they see individual release, Criterion or otherwise, I'll hold off until it's said "That's it. The rest are not coming." before even considering a purchase.
 

Garysb

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jul 31, 2003
Messages
3,431
I would hope they find the missing seconds where there are bad splices or something in 'A Night At The Opera" before putting it out on blu ray. Always think I am watching a bad TV print on local TV when I watch that DVD. The 'Opera" and "A Day At The Races" are they only MGM films I am interested in updating. Like Ron, I prefer the Paramount films. The other films MGM/RKO on DVD are good enough. No interest at all in " A Night In Casablanca". The funniest thing related to that picture is the letter Groucho wrote to Warner Bros, as a publicity stunt about a certain other picture with Humphrey Bogart.

When the legal department of Warner Bros. were notified of a forthcoming feature-length Casablanca spoof in 1945 – A Night in Casablanca, featuring a lead character named ‘Humphrey Bogus’ – they were naturally curious as to the specifics, and so innocently requested more information from the movie’s creators, the Marx Brothers.

Dear Warner Brothers:

Apparently there is more than one way of conquering a city and holding it as your own. For example, up to the time that we contemplated making a picture, I had no idea that the City of Casablanca belonged exclusively to Warner Brothers.

However, it was only a few days after our announcement appeared that we received a long, ominous legal document, warning us not to use the name “Casablanca”.

It seems that in 1471, Ferdinand Balboa Warner, the great-great grandfather of Harry and Jack, while looking for a short cut to the city of Burbank, had stumbled on the shores of Africa and, raising his alpenstock, which he later turned in for a hundred shares of common, named it Casablanca.

I just don’t understand your attitude. Even if they plan on re-releasing the picture, I am sure that the average movie fan could learn to distinguish between Ingrid Bergman and Harpo. I don’t know whether I could, but I certainly would like to try.

You claim you own Casablanca and that no one else can use that name without their permission. What about Warner Brothers — do you own that, too? You probably have the right to use the name Warner, but what about Brothers? Professionally, we were brothers long before you were. When Vitaphone was still a gleam in the inventor’s eye, we were touring the sticks as the Marx Brothers and even before us, there had been other brothers — the Smith Brothers; the Brothers Karamazoff; Dan Brouthers, an outfielder with Detroit; and “Brother, can you spare a dime?” This was originally “Brothers, can you spare a dime” but this was spreading a dime pretty thin so they threw out one brother, gave all the money to the other brother and whittled it down to “Brother, can you spare a dime?”

The younger Warner Brother calls himself Jack. Does he claim that, too? It’s not an original name — it was used long before he was born. Offhand, I can think of two Jacks — there was Jack of “Jack and the Beanstalk”, and Jack, the Ripper, who cut quite a figure in his day. As for Harry, the older brother, he probably signs his checks, sure in the belief that he is the first Harry of all time and that all other Harrys are impostors. Offhand, I can think of two Harrys that preceded him. There was Lighthorse Harry of Revolutionary fame and a Harry Appelbaum who lived on the corner of Ninety-third Street and Lexington Avenue. Appelbaum wasn’t very well known — I’ve almost forgotten what he looked like — the last I heard of him, he was selling neckties at Weber and Heilbroner; but I’ll never forget his mother, she made the best apple strudle in Yorkville.

We now come to the Burbank studio. This is what the Warner Brothers call their place. Old man Burbank is gone. Perhaps you remember him — he was a great man in a garden, he was the wizard who crossed all those fruits and vegetables until he had the poor plants in such a confused and nervous state, that they never were sure whether they were supposed to come in on the meat platter or the dessert dish.

This is just conjecture, of course, but, who knows — perhaps Burbank survivors aren’t too happy over the fact that a plant that grinds out pictures settled in their town, appropriated Burbank’s name and uses it as a front for their films.

It is even possible that the Burbank family is prouder of the potato produced by the old man than they are of the fact that from this town emerged “Casablanca” or even “Gold Diggers of 1931”.

This all seems to add up to a pretty bitter tirade but I don’t mean it to. I love Warners — some of my best friends are Warner Brothers. It is even possible that I am doing them an injustice and that they themselves know nothing at all about this dog-in-the-Wanger attitude. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to discover that the heads of Warners’ legal department know nothing about this dispute for I am acquainted with many of them and they are fine fellows with curly black hair, double-breasted suits and a love of their fellow man that out-Saroyans “Dr. Gillespie”. I have a hunch that his attempt to prevent us from using the title is the scheme of some ferret-faced shyster serving an apprenticeship in their legal department. I know the type — hot out of law school, hungry for success and too ambitious to follow the natural laws of promotion, this bar sinister probably needled Warners’ attorneys, most of whom are fine fellows with curly black hair, double-breasted suits, etc., in attempting to enjoin us.

Well, he won’t get away with it! We’ll fight him to the highest court! No pasty-faced legal adventurer is going to cause bad blood between the Warners and the Marxes. We are all brothers under the skin and we’ll remain friends till the last reel of “A Night in Casablanca” goes tumbling over the spool.



 
Last edited:

atcolomb

Screenwriter
Joined
Mar 19, 2009
Messages
1,905
Location
Chicago Area
Real Name
Angelo
When i viewed A Night at the Opera with the commentary Leonard Maltin talks about where the film originally began in Italy but that scene was removed because of World War II or complaints from the Italian government that it "made fun of Italian people". "Unfortunately, the edits were made to MGM's master negative, and no prints of the original uncut version are known to survive".
 
Last edited:

Dick

Lead Actor
Premium
Joined
May 22, 1999
Messages
8,454
Real Name
Rick
I want them all.

I fear that if Criterion gets a few we'll never see the rest of them in a HD format. Warner needs to step up and release the entire collection on BR. Nothing else will satisfy me as I love all of their movies, even the "lesser" ones.

A complete Warner box set of all 7 films on BR would be a day 1 purchase for me. If they see individual release, Criterion or otherwise, I'll hold off until it's said "That's it. The rest are not coming." before even considering a purchase.
They could almost certainly fit all 7 films on four DL Blu's, with enough space left for some bonus materials, and provide us with excellent PQ and bit rates. Commentaries take up very little space. It would be a matter of source material. ROOM SERVICE, for example, was from RKO, and many of their negatives or IP's or prints are in rough shape. WB has done a remarkable job bringing many of that studio's classics back to life, but who knows about that one?

A NIGHT IN CASABLANCA was released through United Artists, and I've yet to see a really good copy of it on any format.

The rest are MGM, and they should be a lot easier to work with. But, then, maybe not...
 
  • Like
Reactions: timk1041

ColbyCo82

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Nov 5, 2007
Messages
162
Real Name
Steven
Warner Archive has DVD re-issues of A Day at the Races, Room Service and At the Circus up for pre-order. No sign of Blu-rays or A Night at the Opera, Go West, or The Big Store as of yet.

Also, still no sign of any new-to-dvd films. Going on 10 months now I believe.
 
  • Sad
Reactions: Peter Keller

Astairefan

Second Unit
Joined
Sep 7, 2013
Messages
433
Real Name
Neil Powell
Warner Archive has DVD re-issues of A Day at the Races, Room Service and At the Circus up for pre-order. No sign of Blu-rays or A Night at the Opera, Go West, or The Big Store as of yet.

Also, still no sign of any new-to-dvd films. Going on 10 months now I believe.
I assume you missed the Go West/ The Big Store double-feature DVD re-release that WAC put out a few years back. At this point, A Night At The Opera is the only Warner-owned Marx Brothers movie not re-released through WAC, which gives credence to the idea that Criterion may have licensed it. The only other possibility would be if they have indeed found something with the excised footage, and are planning to release a DVD with the new footage alongside a Blu-ray (highly unlikely, though). And realistically, if we haven't heard of anything for any of these being on HBO Max with restored transfers, then they are likely not coming for a while, since WAC had to close down when the pandemic hit (and, as far as I know, they haven't started back up again), so anything that wasn't far enough along that they could do from home is unlikely to come anytime soon.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: ColbyCo82