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Man with a Million (1954)

The Million Pound Note (original title)
Approved | | Comedy, Romance | 18 June 1954 (USA)
As part of a bet, two aristocrats offer a penniless American a loan, without telling him that the amount is £1,000,000 in the form of a single banknote.

Director:

Ronald Neame

Writers:

Mark Twain (story), Jill Craigie (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gregory Peck ... Henry Adams
Ronald Squire ... Oliver Montpelier
Joyce Grenfell ... Duchess of Cromarty
A.E. Matthews ... Duke of Frognal
Maurice Denham ... Jonathan Reid
Reginald Beckwith Reginald Beckwith ... Rock
Brian Oulton ... Lloyd
John Slater ... Parsons
Wilbur Evans Wilbur Evans ... American Ambassador
Hartley Power Hartley Power ... Lloyd Hastings
George Devine George Devine ... Chop House Proprietor
Bryan Forbes ... Todd
Gudrun Ure Gudrun Ure ... Renie (as Ann Gudrun)
Hugh Wakefield ... Duke of Cromarty
Wilfrid Hyde-White ... Roderick Montpelier (as Wilfrid Hyde White)
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Storyline

An impoverished American sailor is fortunate enough to be passing the house of two rich gentlemen who have conceived the crazy idea of distributing a note worth one million pounds. The sailor finds that whenever he tries to use the note to buy something, people treat him like a king and let him have whatever he likes for free. Ultimately, the money proves to be more troublesome than it is worth when it almost costs him his dignity and the woman he loves. Written by Jonathon Dabell <J.D.@pixie.ntu.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It's a new Peck... in a heck of a howl! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 June 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Man with a Million See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film director Bryan Forbes can be seen as Todd, the taylor. See more »

Goofs

When Henry Adams is chasing the bank note you can clearly see modern telephone manhole covers on the pavement and television aerials on the rooftops. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Reid: Now what about a cycling suit, Mr. Adams ? Cycling is all the rage nowadays. And then of course there is Ascot.
Henry Adams: I'm not gonna do any cycling and I'm not gonna do any Ascotting. Sailing is my hobby.
Mr. Reid: Ah ! The sport of kings. Very right and proper for a personage such as yourself.
Henry Adams: I thought racing was the sport of kings ?
Mr. Reid: [unperturbed] Then it ought to be sailing !
[to his assistant]
Mr. Reid: Nip in the waist a bit.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Trading Places (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

Tempus adest floridum
(uncredited)
Traditional
Whistled by Gregory Peck
See more »

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User Reviews

"What A Charmingly Whimsical Gesture!"
11 July 1999 | by stryker-5See all my reviews

Two elderly brothers, wealthy English gentlemen, establish a wager. They entrust a million-pound banknote to a penniless American, to see if he can live for a month purely on the good will which the note will engender, without ever having to cash it.

Gregory Peck plays Henry Adams, the innocent American, in this stodgy romantic comedy, based on a Mark Twain story. His love interest Portia Lansdowne is played by Jane Griffiths. The film is really just one gag, strung out for 90 minutes - a pauper has no friends, whereas a millionaire is surrounded by sycophancy and limitless credit. Markets deal in confidence, rather than cash.

The film is unarguably well-made. The performances are sharp, the incidental music comments neatly on the action and the 'look' is sumptuous. And yet there is something flat about Ronald Neame's direction, and the laughs are rather thin on the ground.

Verdict - Ostensibly a good idea, but not enough to support a full-length film.


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