The Nitwits


Comedy / Crime / Music / Mystery

Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 29% · 50 ratings
IMDb Rating 5.9/10 10 419 419


Top cast

Willie Best as Sleepy
Arthur Treacher as Man with Tennis Equipment
Betty Grable as Mary Roberts
Evelyn Brent as Mrs. Alice Lake
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
750.36 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 21 min
P/S 0 / 2
1.36 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 21 min
P/S 0 / 3

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Ron Oliver 7 / 10

A Murder Mystery With Wheeler & Woolsey

When the Black Widow murderer strikes at the boss of a music production business, THE NITWITS who run the cigar stand down in the lobby find themselves under investigation for homicide. Can the Boys find the real villain before he kills again?

A rather routine Wheeler & Woolsey comedy (Bert Wheeler is the one with the curly hair; Robert Woolsey has the cigar & spectacles) but the Boys are always fun to watch. Betty Grable is on hand this time as Wheeler’s love interest. Blustery Hale Hamilton is one of the Black Widow’s victims. Erik Rhodes has a small role as a suspect. Willie Best is on hand to add to the madcap finale. Film mavens will recognize Arthur Treacher as the man with the tennis equipment.

Wheeler & Grable sing “You Opened My Eyes” - Woolsey warbles “The Black Widow’s Gonna Get You If You Don’t Watch Out”. There is some racial stereotyping, not unusual in Hollywood films of this period.

Reviewed by ellaf 9 / 10

Charming, charming comedy with some action!

I didn't know the comedy team Wheeler & Woolsey before seeing this film but, believe me, you must find out about them because they were very effective and good, especially Robert Woolsey who reminds me a bit of George Burns. See them! The wonderful Betty Grable is, as always, very beautiful but one cannot believe, seeing her in that movie, how subdued, poised and almost shy she was at that time. When one knows how much energy she displayed in the Forties and how sassy she was, it is a bit of a curio to see her in the Thirties. She doesn't have much of a showy role but she's good and we have the pleasure of hearing her sing in a duet with Bert Wheeler and do some steps with him.

Fred Keating is very handsome, laid-off and good. He should have been a leading man...why not Betty's? What a stunning couple they would've made in Technicolor! As for the movie, it is very good. Everyone work well together and, besides the comedy business, there's a little action and suspense.

Yeah, though simple, this film reach it's goal in that it is really entertaining. Don't hesitate to see it if you have a chance.

Reviewed by sol-kay 7 / 10


(Some Spoilers) Almost totally unknown to todays movie going audiences the comedy team of Bert Wheeler & Robert Woolsey was one of the most successful, as RKO Pictures biggest money makers, as well as prolific, making some two dozen films in a span of just under ten years, of the 1930's.

It was in the mid 1930's when Robert Woosley started suffering from health problems that the comedy team started to go under and finally came to an end with Woosley's death at age 50 in 1938 of kidney failure. Ironically Robert Woosley died on Halloween of that year the very day that Orsen Wells made headlines with his unforgettable as well as shocking "War of the Worlds" broadcast on national radio.

"The Nitwits" is a both comedy murder drama with both Wheeler and Woolsey, as Johnnie & Newton,playing two cigar store employees who among other things have developed this truth machine that can force anyone who's put under it to tell the truth no matter how bad it would effect him or her. Even if the truth can send the person to prison for murder.

In the office building where Jonnie and Newton have their cigar stand record producer Winfield Lake, Hale Hamilton,gets a,threatening note from this person who calls himself the Black Widow. The Black Widow tells Lake to pay up, the amount of cash is never made clear, or die.

Getting top New York Private Eye William Darrell, Fred Keating, on the case doesn't at all help the concerned Winfield Lake with him ending up shot to death in his office by an unseen assailant. It's with the killer now targeting Mrs. Lake, Evelyn Brent, to come up with the blackmail money that PI Darrell suddenly and inexplicably decides, for the first time in his career, to give into the blackmailers demands!

While all this is going on Mr. Lake's pretty secretary Mary Roberts,Betty Grable,is implicated in his murder being that she was the last person to see him alive and also had a gun in her possession! A gun that her boyfriend Johnnie gave Mary as a present! It doesn't take long for both Johnnie and his friend Newton to get themselves in involved in Mr. Lake's murder in trying to clear the innocent Mary Roberts.

The killer himself is caught red-handed by Johnnie and Newton when he plops himself down on the chair that the truth detector, invented by Newton, is installed on. Screaming out uncountably that he's in fact the killer, the Black Weidow, the two "Nitwits" don't believe him thinking that the machine had malfunctioned! This gives the by now recognized, by the audience, Black Widow a new lease on life, as well as a scary Halloween skeleton custom, to end up murdering a number of other people including suspected killer, by the police, the auditor of M. Lake's enterprises Mr. Lurch, Arthur Aylesworth!

Hilarious final sequence with both Johnnie and Newton having it out with the Black Widow and his henchmen, as well as the bumbling police, as they end up throwing everything from beer bottles to one to five gallon jugs as well as the bathroom bathtub on top of their heads. There also Black comic Willie Best as Sleepy the building elevator operator who together with his neighborhood, Harlem, dice shooting friends uncover the secret way that the Black widow is to get his ransom money, through the ventilator shaft. That leads the killer, in his skeleton costume, to come out of hiding and scare the living hell out of Sleepy and his friends as well everyone else in the cast and audience until one of Newton's over-sized moonshine jugs puts him out of business.

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