It seems I was blinkered with my review of Duck Soup, as I found out when I noticed I had a comment from Anonymous, who I want to thank for his well written reply, and for pointing out I mixed up Chico and Harpo, and that he didn't get mean about my ignorance:
"I think you missed the point with Duck Soup. It was a classic in irreverence. Chaos of thought as a a way to criticize and minimize over-blown self importance.
Groucho said what we would have liked to have said. Harpo (the mute, not Chico) pulled the straw out of the stuff shirts.
The stunts were over long and childish. The process behind them was a tribute to to those that couldn't do what they wanted to anyone. It was a time of worldwide depression. The haves and have nots were miles apart and the Marx Brothers were great levellers.
The movie had relevance within the context of the times and it was a stinging condemnation of the mistreatment of those that suffered most.
Try to watch it without looking for the humour by 21st century definition. Try to understand millions out of work and soup kitchens and death by starvation in a land of plenty. Poverty, homelessness, abuse of systems and so on.
A 1933 version of today without the jaundiced eye with which we spear everything.
I hated the Marx Brothers but I loved what the movie had to say.
I didn't laugh either."