Can you imagine making a flick like Brewster’s Millions in today’s economy?
Ah, thank God for the 80s.
When Brewster’s Millions arrived at the local movie theater in May 1985, Richard Pryor was hot off… well, not much. Two years earlier he’d graced us as Gus in Superman III, but his career was certainly in need of a little jump start. And as minor-league ballplayer Montgomery Brewster, he got it.
The story? Brewster is the only surviving heir of a grumpy (and rich!) old man named Rupert Horn… who has a deal. If Brewster can spend $30 million in 30 days, he gets a check for $300 million. If he fails, he gets diddly. The catch? He can’t own anything at the end of the 30 days, he can’t give the money away, and he can only give 5% to charity. Oh, and he can’t tell anyone what he’s doing.
Ready, set, spend!
Together with his trusty buddy Spike (John Candy), Brewster sets out to get rid of his money as fast as he can. Along the way he sets himself up in the penthouse suite, plays baseball against the Yankees, and then wages a multi-million dollar campaign for Mayor of New York, telling people to vote for “None of the Above”.
Brewster’s Millions was comedy genius, and Pryor and Candy were both at the top of their game. Sure it’s a little goofy… but it’s cut from the same cloth as Trading Places (both were actually written by the same guy), and in the 80s, well… comedies about spending money just seemed right.
It finished the year at #20, bringing in more than $40 million… and that’s a good-sized chunk of change–– maybe even too much for good ol’ Brewster to blow through.
We ♥ Brewster’s Millions.