Go West/the Big Store

Go West/the Big Store

Director: Charles "Chuck" Riesner, Edward N. Buzzell, Joseph Barbera

Cast: Charles "Chuck" Riesner, Edward N. Buzzell, Joseph Barbera, Marx Brothers

     
 
The last of the Marx Bros.' MGM films, The Big Store is also the least -- though a few good gags manage to seep through the overall tedium. Groucho Marx plays two-bit detective Wolf J. Flywheel, hired by department-store owner Martha Phelps (Margaret Dumont) to act as bodyguard for Martha's nephew

Overview

The last of the Marx Bros.' MGM films, The Big Store is also the least -- though a few good gags manage to seep through the overall tedium. Groucho Marx plays two-bit detective Wolf J. Flywheel, hired by department-store owner Martha Phelps (Margaret Dumont) to act as bodyguard for Martha's nephew and sole heir Tommy Rogers (Tony Martin). Crooked store manager Grover (Douglas Dumbrille) is anxious to take over the operation and to hide the fact that he's been juggling the books; to expedite this, he has arranged several "accidents" to put Tommy out of the way. Despite his monumental ineptitude, Flywheel manages to protect Tommy from harm, with the help of his mute assistant Wacky (Harpo Marx) and Tommy's music-teacher pal Ravelli (Chico Marx). After a series of yawn-provoking complications, Grover tries once more to kill Tommy during a musical reception given in honor of the store's merger with the Hastings Brothers. When this also fails, he kidnaps Tommy's girl friend Joan (Virginia Grey), a bit of skullduggery captured on film by camera-wielding Ravelli. Grover's efforts to get his hands on the incriminating photo leads to a zany slapstick chase through the department store, culminating in the villain's capture ("I told you in the first reel he was a crook," observes Flywheel) and a happy ending for Tommy and Joan. The opening routine in Groucho's seedy office and Harpo's harp solo (in which, through trick photography, he accompanies himself on flute and bass violin) are the only scenes truly worth watching in The Big Store; the big-chase finale is compromised by the fact that the Marx Bros.' stunt doubles do all the work, while the film's major production number, "Tenement Symphony," is downright embarrassing. The Marxes were so disappointed with The Big Store that they vowed to quit moviemaking altogether-only to return to the screen five years later in A Night in Casablanca.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/02/2006
UPC:
0012569791176
Rating:
NR
Source:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[B&W]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital Mono]
Time:
2:43:00

Special Features

Go West: ; Full-screen version; 2 vintage shorts: Pete Smith Specialty Quicker 'n a Wink; Fitzpatrick TravelTalk Cavalcade of San Francisco; Classic cartoon The Milky Way; Audio only bonus: Leo Is on the Air radio promo; Theatrical trailer; Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only); ; The Big Store: ; Full-screen version; Vintage short FLicker Memories; Classic cartoon Officer Pooch; Audio only bonus: Outtake song Where There's Music; Theatrical trailer; Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)

Cast & Crew

Scene Index

Disc #1, Side A -- Go West
1. Credits and Forward [1:48]
2. Money Ties [8:25]
3. Dead Man's Gulch [3:21]
4. Hate, Honor and Obey [2:30]
5. IOU [4:06]
6. Jerks in the Coach [5:54]
7. Two-Gun Quale [2:10]
8. You Can't Argue With Love [3:38]
9. Piano Specialty [2:40]
10. Dustup [3:25]
11. Only Thing Wrong [3:49]
12. Dixie in Their Cups [4:13]
13. Stick 'em Up [4:19]
14. Ridin' the Range [2:59]
15. Indian Camp [5:11]
16. Harp Specialty [5:03]
17. Untrained Trainmen [3:55]
18. Stretch Express [4:23]
19. Woodwork [2:57]
20. Off and on Track [1:51]
21. Golden Spike [3:04]
22. Cast List [:24]
Disc #1, Side B -- The Big Store
1. Credits [1:25]
2. Tommy's Inheritance [3:25]
3. Elevator Hanky-Panky [2:24]
4. Flywheel's New Client [4:20]
5. Older-Model Transport [3:56]
6. If It's You [4:09]
7. Martha's New Suitor [4:31]
8. Carte Blanche [3:52]
9. Sing While You Sell (I) [3:30]
10. Rock-a-Bye Baby [1:50]
11. Sing While You Sell (II) [2:14]
12. The Critic and the Cutup [3:29]
13. Bed Department [4:12]
14. Kidding Around [4:24]
15. Killers Around [2:10]
16. Piano Specialty [3:21]
17. The Wrong Gray Coats [3:37]
18. Harp Specialty With Mirrors [5:19]
19. Photo Finish [2:08]
20. Tenement Symphony [6:10]
21. Getting the Picture [4:18]
22. Free-Wheeling Chase [5:39]
23. Free-Wheeling Exit [1:57]
24. Cast List [:38]

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