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What-No Beer? (1933)

What! No Beer? (original title)
Passed | | Comedy | 10 February 1933 (USA)
Two men decide to cash in on the end of Prohibition by selling watered down beer.

Director:

Edward Sedgwick

Writers:

Robert E. Hopkins (original story), Carey Wilson (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Buster Keaton ... Elmer J. Butts
Jimmy Durante ... Jimmy Potts
Roscoe Ates ... Schultz (as Rosco Ates)
Phyllis Barry ... Hortense
John Miljan ... Butch Lorado
Henry Armetta ... Tony
Edward Brophy ... Spike Moran
Charles Dunbar Charles Dunbar ... Mulligan
Charles Giblyn Charles Giblyn ... Chief
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Storyline

Although he has never met her, Elmer Butts loves Hortense secretly and from afar. He dreams of making a million dollars so he can buy her a Rolls automobile and marry her. With prohibition apparently on the verge of ending, Elmer's friend Jimmy Potts gets an idea to make them both rich by opening a brewery just before the legalization of alcoholic beverages. Their timing is off, and the police raid them, but their inept brewing has created a beer with no alcohol, so they are let off. But it has also resulted in a cheaply made beer, and bootlegger Spike Moran realizes that he can vastly increase his profits by partnering with Elmer and Jimmy. But none of them reckons with the competitor, another bootlegger, gangster Butch Lorado. Butch has a girlfriend....Elmer's dream girl, Hortense. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

More Kick Than Real Beer! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Passed
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 February 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

What-No Beer? See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film's initial television broadcast in New York City took place Monday 16 December 1957 on WCBS (Channel 2); it was first telecast in Philadelphia 3 October 1958 on WFIL (Channel 6) followed by San Francisco 17 December 1958 on KGO (Channel 7). Apparently, because of its age and reputation, Los Angeles television viewers never had a chance at it at this time, since there's no reliable documentation it was ever shown by KTTV (Channel 11), who then had access to the MGM film library. See more »

Goofs

Elmer and Jimmy are told by the brewery's previous owner that the bank had foreclosed on him "years ago". If so, the bank would own the brewery and it wouldn't be his to sell. See more »

Quotes

Jimmy Potts: Who's the dame?
Elmer J. Butts: She's a native of Australia.
Jimmy Potts: Elmer, are you in love with a kangaroo?
See more »

Connections

Featured in Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Happy Days Are Here Again
(1929) (uncredited)
Music by Milton Ager
Played by a band at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

Slap Dash Slap Stick
31 October 2011 | by dogwater-1See all my reviews

Keaton followers know his decision to go to MGM was a disaster artistically and the smothering of his talent is apparent in this film. In some scenes he looks like he hasn't slept in days. Stick with it though, as with any chance to glimpse comic genius, you can spot the sparks. Durante, also a unique performer, and Keaton don't make a good team. Keaton was a cool presence, far more subtle and with much more depth of characterization than other comedians of the era. Durante was a hot performer, more verbal, but with a manic physicality. At times, you worry that he's actually hurting Keaton with his constant shoving, grabbing, poking and slapping. There is a rather sexy performance from Phyllis Barry as Keaton's amour and one wonders why she didn't go on to become, as they say. Everybody works very hard which usually kills farce, but there are moments of pure zaniness usually involving barrels, and some good lines satirizing the standard gangster picture. Anyone who loves these two men, as I do, should see this, if only in giggling tribute.


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