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Mary Turner goes up for three years on a crime she didn't commit. Once out she and former prison mates plan a scam in which old men can be sued for breach of promise - the "heart balm" racket. After plotting verious ways to get back at the men who set her up initially, she softens and settles down. Written by
Ed Stephan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"Paid" is a well done early talkie starring Joan Crawford, Douglass Montgomery, Marie Provost, and Robert Armstrong. It was remade as a programmer in 1939, "Within the Law." Crawford is Mary Turner, sent to the Big Doll House by her store owner boss for a crime she didn't commit. She threatens to get even with him. During her time in stir, she studies the law and realizes that you can use the law to make money. Once out, she joins a gang that prison buddy Aggie (Marie Provost) belongs to, and the group starts legally separating people from their money. Mary, still set on revenge, seduces the son of her boss (Montgomery).
This is a good movie, but the beginning is better than the end, which descends into the world of melodrama. It is superior to the remake.
Crawford, with her hypnotic eyes, does a great job - she replaced Norma Shearer, who was on maternity leave -- and she has excellent support from the tragic Provost, Montgomery, and Armstrong. Apparently a fight in the women's shower was cut, despite the precode status.
Gotta love the young, vibrant Crawford.
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