Thanks A Million is corking entertainment. Film unquestionably establishes Fred Allen for the screen. It also takes Paul Whiteman and his orchestra, including Ramona, the Yacht Club Boys, and Rubinoff and his violin, and shows ’em at their best.
Allen’s radio rep as a pungent comedy deliverer is well capitalized here as the manager of the near-stranded unit which includes Ann Dvorak and Patsy Kelly as a sister team; an anonymous band, presumaly maestroed by Dave Rubinoff who gets in a couple of violin solos (including a pash personality); the Yacht Club Boys, who, like Rubinoff, also have lines besides two corking specialties; and Benny Baker who’s an indeterminate stooge throughout the footage.
Nunnally Johnson’s script [from a story by Melville Crossman, nom de plume of Darryl F. Zanuck] deserves some sort of an award as a sample of celluloid writing. It’s made to order for Allen’s dead-pan comedy. Punchy, pithy, and punctuated with a flock of telling nifties, the comedy wordage doesn’t sacrifice the story. The title song is the best of Gus Kahn-Arthur Johnston’s five numbers ‘Pocket Full of Sunshine’ and ‘High on A Hill Top’, along with ‘Thanks A Million’, are handled by Dick Powell.
1935: Nomination: Best Sound