Million Dollar Legs

Susan Fleming, Jack Oakie and WC Fields and a number of very heavy weights

Originally intended as a Marx Brothers movie, Million Dollar Legs is a comedy with humour verging on the surreal and is set in a familiar Marx Brothers world. Even so it’s probably too mad even for them. It’s so familiar, in fact, that you might wonder if they read Joseph Mankiewicz’s original treatment for Million Dollar Legs and rejected it because there wasn’t enough meat in it for all the brothers but liked its basic outline enough to borrow it for Duck Soup, which came out the following year, 1933. Duck Soup is the one where Groucho is the ruler of a bankrupt country called Freedonia, who goes to war to save his … Read more

The Bank Dick

WC Fields has a drink

The Bank Dick is one hour 12 minute of WC Fields doing what WC Fields does – comedy in an erratic, chaotic, incoherent and brilliant way. It’s barely a film at all, more a series of sketches linked together by the familiar Fields character, a dyspeptic layabout and drunk who spends so much time and effort trying to avoid work that it’s a full-time job in itself. Loosely, and this is very loose, the “plot” follows the irascible shirker into and out of his favourite bar and then into and out of two different jobs. In one, he somehow becomes the director of a movie, merely by claiming to some wits-end producer type … Read more