The Marx brothers are on top of their game here with a horse-race oriented gagfest (Groucho is a veterinarian mistaken for a human doctor)... at least when the film isn't detoured into an extended musical ballet number or endless sing-song bit. Maureen O'Sullivan's appearance is a bit expendable, but the bits the brothers schtick through are often just priceless. One of the Marx brothers' best.
A stultifying bore, this imitation of Bridge on the River Kwai would have been long forgotten but for the fact it contains an Oscar-winning performance, with Katina Paxinou's gritty guide handily earning her award. The film earned a surprising nine nominations total, winning just the one. The film is an adaptation of Hemingway's book set during the Spanish Civil War, here with a wooden Gary Cooper sitting around in a cave while he waits to blow up a bridge. Meanwhile, he falls in love with Ingrid Bergman's communist refugee, before the fateful bell tolls. Alas, it takes nearly three hours for that to happen, with little to entertain us along the way.