Arsenic and Old Lace

Synopsis: Mortimer Brewster is a newspaperman and author known for his diatribes against marriage. We watch him being married at city hall in the opening scene. Now all that is required is a quick trip home to tell Mortimer's two maiden aunts. While trying to break the news, he finds out his aunts' hobby; killing lonely old men and burying them in the cellar. It gets worse.
Director(s): Frank Capra
Production: Warner Bros. Pictures
  1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
118 min

You'd be surprised

what they'd consider swearing.

Will you excuse me?

No, no, Teddy, dear. Thank you. I'll go.

-Come right in, Mr. Brophy.

-Miss Abby, we came for the toys.

This is Officer O'Hara.

He's taking over my beat.

-How do you do, miss?

-Welcome to our neighborhood.

Gentlemen, what news

have you brought me?

Colonel, we have nothing to report.

No, absolutely nothing to report.


Thank you, gentlemen. At ease.

You know the Reverend Dr. Harper

from the church next door?

Hello. This is Officer O'Hara,

the new man on the beat.

How do you do, sir? It's nice to meet you.

The toys are on the chair up here,

by the library door.

Teddy, run upstairs and bring down your

Army and Navy from Aunt Martha's room.

They're all packed.

That's splendid work you men do, fixing up

discarded toys for the kids at camp.


It gives us something to do at the station.

You get tired of playing cards.

-So these are the toys?

-How's Mrs. Brophy?

She's better, thank you.

But a little weak, still.

I'll get some beef broth

for you to take to her.

Please don't bother.

You've done so much already.

Stop the nonsense! I won't be a minute.

Gentlemen, if I know what pure kindness

and absolute generosity are...'s because I've known

the Brewster sisters.

Teddy, you promised me

you wouldn't do that anymore.

But I have to call a Cabinet meeting

to get those supplies.

Now don't do that again. Do you hear me?

He used to do that at night...

...and the neighbors raised Cain.

They're afraid of him.

Look, Sarge, I promised I wouldn't swear,

but what the heck--

What's going on here?

-He's quite harmless.

-He thinks he's Teddy Roosevelt.

There's a lot of worse guys

he could think he was.

That's right.

I'll make a note.

He's an interesting character.

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Julius J. Epstein

Julius J. Epstein (August 22, 1909 – December 30, 2000) was an American screenwriter, who had a long career, best remembered for his screenplay – written with his twin brother, Philip, and Howard E. Koch – of the film Casablanca (1942), for which the writers won an Academy Award. It was adapted from an unpublished play, Everybody Comes to Rick's, written by Murray Bennett and Joan Alison. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018


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