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Arsenic and Old Lace Film Summary & Analysis

This Study Guide consists of approximately 25 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Arsenic and Old Lace.
This section contains 400 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
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Motifs

Crazy Relatives

Everyone has at least one crazy relative, so people can easily relate to this film. Mortimer has avoided getting married for years not only because of a fear of commitment, but also because insanity seems to run in his family. As the film goes on, Mortimer's fear that his own marriage will perpetuate the insanity becomes apparent.

When Mortimer comes home from getting married, he realizes how very messed up his family really is. He discovers that his aunts have developed a dangerous habit of murdering lonely men to put them out of his misery. In addition to his two crazy aunts, Mortimer has an uncle who thinks he's Teddy Roosevelt and a cruel brother who has murdered a dozen people. Viewers' lives suddenly seem a little more normal as they meet this family, and they can relate to Mortimer and his fears...

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This section contains 400 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Arsenic and Old Lace Film Summary
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