A small country on the verge of bankruptcy is persuaded to enter the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics as a means of raising money. Either a masterpiece of absurdity or a triumph of satire, ... See full summary »
Tillie and Augustus Winterbottom are thought to be missionaries when they arrive to find Phineas Pratt trying cheat the Sheridans out of her father's inheritance, including a ferry ... See full summary »
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 <email@example.com>
One of over 700 Paramount productions, filmed between 1929-49, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »
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 »
[Glidden's assistant brings him the city directory]
The first name that this drop falls on is going to get one million dollars. What's that name?
Marvin - Glidden Assistant:
John D. Rockefeller.
What? Pull that book over here.
[He flips through the city directory and picks other names]
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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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