Frequent blog commenters Todd Mason and Art Scott recommended this movie starring Fred Allen and a plethora of others, including Binnie Barnes, Robert Benchley, Jack Benny, Don Ameche, Rudy Vallee, William Bendix, John Carradine, Sidney Toler, Minerva Pious, and Jerry Colonna. I immediately recognized the plot as that of The 12 Chairs, a Russian tale that Mel Brooks filmed in the '70s, except that in Allen's movie there are only five chairs. Not that the plot matters, but it's essentially this: Allen has inherited his uncle's fortune. Turns out that the uncle was murdered, and the identity of his killer, along with $300,000, is hidden in one of five chairs that Allen has sold to an antiques dealer, who's passed them along to others. Allen needs to recover the chairs to prove that he's not a killer and to get his hands on the money.
The plot is just a device to give Allen an excuse to get into a lot of situations ranging from the absurd to the more absurd. The logic of movies is pretty much tossed out the window, and the fourth wall not so much shattered as ignored. (Characters address the audience and even ask for directions.) One thing I particularly liked was the villainous lawyer John Carradine's hair, which appears to be especially coiffed to accommodate his top hat. Yes, he wears a top hat. And a cape. Plays the organ, too.
It would be futile to try to explain why this movie's funny. If you've ever heard Allen's radio show, you might have some idea, but not a very good one. You have to see this to believe it. Check it out.