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If I Had a Million (1932)

Passed  -  Comedy | Drama  -  2 December 1932 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 1,033 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 6 critic

A dying tycoon gives million-dollar windfalls to eight people picked from the city directory.

Directors:

(uncredited) , (uncredited) , 6 more credits »

Writers:

(based on a story by), , 23 more credits »
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Title: If I Had a Million (1932)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Steve Gallagher
...
Phineas V. Lambert
...
Eddie Jackson
Jack Oakie ...
Private Mulligan
Richard Bennett ...
John Glidden
...
Henry Peabody (as Charlie Ruggles)
Alison Skipworth ...
Emily La Rue
...
Rollo La Rue
...
Mrs. Peabody
...
Private O'Brien
...
Mrs. Mary Walker
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Storyline

Tycoon John Glidden, dying though still vigorous, is so dissatisfied with his relatives and associates that, rather than will his money to any of them, he decides to give it away in million-dollar amounts to strangers picked from the city directory. He picks a meek china salesman; a prostitute; a forger; two ex-vaudevilleans who hate road hogs; a condemned man; a mild-mannered clerk; a boisterous marine; and an oppressed inmate of an old ladies' home. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 December 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

China Shop  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (USA) (DVD release)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

$1,000,000 in 1932 had the same purchasing power as $15,700,000 in 2009. See more »

Goofs

Discovering he's about to die, millionaire Glidden decides to leave his money to names he's randomly selected from the phone book. But when first name he chooses turns out to be John D. Rockefeller, he flips a few pages further into directory and selects someone named Peabody - a name that would actually have appeared in the book before Rockefeller. See more »

Quotes

John Glidden: [in letter] Herewith is a check for One Million Dollars presented to you by the undersigned. There are no conditions or restrictions attached to its use. I can only caution you to use it wisely and to the best of your ability in the promotion of your own happiness and welfare, for which procedure there seems to be no established precedent. Should you encounter any difficulties regarding this check, you may reach me at the above address. I will not, however, assume the responsibility of advising ...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Shadows of Suspense (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen
(uncredited)
Traditional Negro spiritual
Sung by Clarence Muse
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Unique multi-story rarity
4 December 2001 | by (Huntington, NY) – See all my reviews

IF I HAD A MILLION is one of those rare films worth having on tape. I was thrilled to find this back in the 1980's, and it's a prized item of my collection.

The plot is simple, but crazy. A dying billionaire, sick of his greedy relatives, decides to randomly give million dollar checks to strangers picked via the phone book. Since this is in the middle of the depression, the results are eye-popping!

My two favorite segments involve George Raft as a petty thief unable to cash the check because the law is after him. His downward spiral is rather chilling.

The other favorite segment, and the one this 1932 film is most famous for is the one where two eccentric ex-vaudevillians (W.C Fields and Alison Skipworth) decide to run selfish road-hogs off the road. Road rage has never been funnier than in this segment. Fields' angry comments to fellow drivers is a scream.

The rest of the segments run from sappy (a man going to the electric chair gets the check) to sweetly funny (The almost wordless segment with Charles Laughton, May Robson as a fiesty rest-home victim, and Gary Cooper as an out of control Marine) This film is worth a million!


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