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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Million Dollar Mystery (1987)

Million Dollar Mystery (1987)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C-     Sound: C-



Hoping to be a new It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World but with a cheapness much more like Scavenger Hunt and a contest like Inchon, Richard Fleischer’s lame Million Dollar Mystery (1987) was written by the Revenge Of The Nerds scribes in what is almost a 94-miuntes-long ad for Glad plastic bag products.  Fleischer apparently was in it for the money himself, because this material is very weak and this was one of the last films DeLaurentiis Entertainment Group released as a studio before folding.  Watching this, you can see why.


The film stars Happy Days dad and national Glad spokesman Tom Bosley as a rich man with a big fortune to give away to whichever idiot can find it first.  With $4 Million of stolen money hidden “somewhere”, the various quirky nuts go to find it.  Kevin Pollack shows up, Rich Hall is here in an early appearance and they even threw in a Playboy Playmate.  I guess Penny Baker knew all kinds of things about Glad Bags.


The film had the additional gimmick of a contest to the public with the prize at a million dollars.  However, the film made just under that amount and the producers still had to give away the money.  Bosley’s character does not last long and when he dies, this just gets worse.  It even feels like the film version of the board game Clue, which knocked off Neil Simon’s great Murder By Death (1976) to begin with, leaving this at least two generations away from an original comedy idea.  As a matter of fact, watching Bosley’s Glad TV ads in a compilation would have been more entertaining.  Too bad they are not bonus features.  All in all, this is one big, embarrassing yawn!


The anamorphically enhanced 2.35 X 1 image was actually shot by the legendary cinematographer Jack Cardiff, who has directed and shot so many classics that this wacky work is at the bottom of his credits.  The transfer is adequate, with fairly good color.  The sound was distorted analog Ultra Stereo, a lesser, cheaper version of Dolby A and it shows with limited surrounds and fidelity.  The only extra is the trailer, but it is amusing.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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