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If I Had a Million (1932)

Passed | | Comedy, Drama | 22 February 1933 (Sweden)
A dying tycoon gives million-dollar windfalls to eight people picked from the city directory.

Directors:

James Cruze (uncredited), H. Bruce Humberstone (uncredited) | 6 more credits »

Writers:

Robert Hardy Andrews (based on a story by) (as Robert D. Andrews), Claude Binyon | 14 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Gary Cooper ... Steve Gallagher
Charles Laughton ... Phineas V. Lambert
George Raft ... Eddie Jackson
Jack Oakie ... Private Mulligan
Richard Bennett ... John Glidden
Charles Ruggles ... Henry Peabody (as Charlie Ruggles)
Alison Skipworth ... Emily La Rue
W.C. Fields ... Rollo La Rue
Mary Boland ... Mrs. Peabody
Roscoe Karns ... Private O'Brien
May Robson ... 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

Taglines:

YOU'VE OFTEN SAID IT! NOW SEE WHAT HAPPENS! (Print Ad-Daily Star, ((Long Island City, NY)) 23 January 1933) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Ernst Lubitsch segment starring Charles Laughton, "The Clerk," is included in the Criterion edition of Design for Living (1933), spine #592. See more »

Goofs

The La Rues purchase 9 vehicles from the used car lot and drive out in one car followed by 8 other vehicles. At the end of the day when they are down to one car, they only pay off 6 drivers. 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 ...
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Alternate Versions

Some local censors deleted objectionable scenes in the "Violet" and "Death Cell" segments. In "Violet," when she throws off the covers and removes her stockings, and in "Death Cell," the preparation for execution and the opening of the door to the execution chamber. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Hist-o-Rama: W.C. Fields (1961) See more »

Soundtracks

(I'll Be Glad When You're Dead) You Rascal You
(1931) (uncredited)
Written by Spo-De-Odee
Sung by an unidentified male voice on a record
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User Reviews

IF I HAD A MILLION
3 March 2000 | by CHARLIE-89See all my reviews

This is one of those films that exists in a cinematic no-man's land, because it is in a legal copyright tangle. That is very unfortunate, because IF I HAD A MILLION is one of the finest of the early talkies. The story has a dying millionaire who doesn't want to see his fortune go to greedy relatives. Instead, he selects some names at random from the city directory and decides to give them each a million dollars. First, he gives the money to Charles Ruggles, a henpecked husband who is always having his salary deducted when he accidentally breaks china at the china shop that he works at. His nagging wife won't let him be. So, to get revenge, he takes his million to the store and breaks every piece of china in the place. Wynne Gibson as Violet is the next to get her million. She is a prostitute at a local bar, and she takes her money to rent a private hotel room for the night, to sleep alone. Gangster George Raft is unable to cash the check because he's been arrested for forgery. Next, three marines believe the check to be a fake and give it to a friend, who finds its true worth and spends it on himself. Convict Gene Raymond learns of his new-found fortune as he is being led to the electric chair. Office clerk Charles Laughton takes his money and tells off his boss. And in GRANDMA, kindly old May Robson uses the money to spruce up the old ladies home, Idyllwood. But the highlight is the W.C. Fields sequence, in which he, fed up with road hogs, buys a whole lot of used cars to use as an army against the oncoming traffic. All in all, IF I HAD A MILLION remains a true classic.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 February 1933 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Forger See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (USA) (DVD release)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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