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While New York Sleeps (1920)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  23 August 1920 (USA)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 12 users  
Reviews: 3 user

Three short stories with the same cast in each: "Out of the Night," in which a woman is saved from a bigamous dilemma by a burglar; "The Great White Way," in which a couple of con men pull ... See full summary »

Director:

(as Charles J. Brabin)

Writers:

(screenplay), (story), 2 more credits »
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Title: While New York Sleeps (1920)

While New York Sleeps (1920) on IMDb 6.8/10

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
A Wife / The Vamp / The Girl
William Locke ...
Her husband
Marc McDermott ...
Strange Visitor / The Man / The Paralytic
Harry Sothern ...
Burglar / Friend / His Son
Earl Metcalfe ...
The Gangster
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Storyline

Three short stories with the same cast in each: "Out of the Night," in which a woman is saved from a bigamous dilemma by a burglar; "The Great White Way," in which a couple of con men pull their con on the wrong man; and "A Tragedy of the East Side," in which a man who cannot speak or move is the only witness to his son's murder. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

23 August 1920 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les nuits de New York  »

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A Nitrate Print of this film survives in the UCLA Film and Television Archives, and is not listed for Preservation. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Three exciting, unpredictable crime stories
5 September 2007 | by (Brady, TX USA) – See all my reviews

This film consists of three stories of crime in New York City featuring the same actors in different roles each time. These gritty stories about working class people were directed by Charles Brabin, better known as Theda Bara's husband. The criminals weren't just greedy in these films, they were downright shifty and clever. Since it is an early (1920) feature with a lot of violence, the acting is not as naturalistic as it would be later in the 1920s. All three stories are O'Henry-type stories with a twist at the end.

In the first story, Estelle Taylor's husband leaves her and the baby at home when called in late to work. A bum sneaks into her house, but he's not any old burglar. He's her deceased, convict first husband, who wasn't really killed in a train wreck. While he is threatening her, another burglar sneaks in, expecting to break into the safe. In the commotion, one of the characters is killed, and the other two make an interesting pact.

In the second story, a rich man (Marc McDermott) meets a fancy lady (Taylor again) at the Ziegfeld Follies. They see each other for a while, until she discovers that the man is married. She begs the man to get a divorce and marry her, but he refuses. She kills herself with a gun. McDermott is distraught, and a man comes into the scene and is really upset because he is Taylor's husband. The story has a couple of surprising twists, but I won't give away the amusing ending.

In the final, longest story, Estelle Taylor is an orphaned woman who loses her job at a sewing sweatshop. Her other job is to take care of a quadriplegic man (McDermott again). The man's son loves her, and she marries him just to have someone support her. An organized gang pulls a silk theft at the docks where Taylor's husband is the guard. He is able to free himself enough to call the police. The police catch all but one of the crooks, who swims away and makes it to Taylor's and McDermott's apartment. Taylor is attracted to the criminal, and she nurses him back to health in the attic of the apartment. A couple of weeks later, Taylor's husband catches her talking to the criminal, precipitating a violent ending. The "hook" of the story is that McDermott's character sees everything, but cannot speak or move. The only way that he can communicate with his son or the police is to move and blink his eyes. The last two stories are very suspenseful, and this film is a must-see for silent film fans.


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