7.1/10
59
3 user 1 critic

Working Girls (1931)

Two sisters, May, older, naive, and June, younger and worldly, arrive in New York straight from the country and settle down in a boarding house. Their search for jobs leads them to find beaus and romantic trouble.

Director:

Writers:

, (play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Wild girls at a college pay more attention to parties than their classes. But when one party girl, Stella Ames, goes too far at a local bar and gets in trouble, her professor has to rescue ... See full summary »

Director: Dorothy Arzner
Stars: Clara Bow, Fredric March, Marceline Day
Maborosi (1995)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A young woman's husband apparently commits suicide without warning or reason, leaving behind his wife and infant.

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda
Stars: Makiko Esumi, Takashi Naitô, Tadanobu Asano
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A diplomat is blackmailed by crooked vice cops into helping them frame prostitutes.

Director: John Cromwell
Stars: Paul Lukas, Kay Francis, Judith Wood
Nobody Knows (2004)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

In a small Tokyo apartment, twelve-year-old Akira must care for his younger siblings after their mother leaves them and shows no sign of returning.

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda
Stars: Yûya Yagira, Ayu Kitaura, Hiei Kimura
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

To prove his thesis that any product--even one that doesn't exist--can be merchandized if it is advertised properly, a young man gets together with his father's savvy secretary to market a ... See full summary »

Director: Frank Tuttle
Stars: Norman Foster, Carole Lombard, Richard 'Skeets' Gallagher
Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Judy O'Brien is an aspiring ballerina in a dance troupe. Also in the company is Bubbles, a brash mantrap who leaves the struggling troupe for a career in burlesque. When the company ... See full summary »

Directors: Dorothy Arzner, Roy Del Ruth
Stars: Maureen O'Hara, Louis Hayward, Lucille Ball
Working Girls (1986)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A day in the life of several prostitutes in an upscale Manhattan whore house. The film is a stark portrayal of the women prostitutes, the male customers and the motivations of both. Watch ... See full summary »

Director: Lizzie Borden
Stars: Louise Smith, Ellen McElduff, Amanda Goodwin
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Director: Dorothy Arzner
Stars: Ruth Chatterton, Clive Brook, Paul Lukas
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Jerry Stafford, a businessman, is in love with his secretary but she deserts him for another man. When she realizes her mistake, she goes back to him. Doris Brown is her girlfriend who is in love with a man named Monty Dunn.

Director: Dorothy Arzner
Stars: Claudette Colbert, Fredric March, Monroe Owsley
Edit

Cast

Cast overview:
...
June Thorpe
Dorothy Hall ...
Mae Thorpe
...
Boyd Wheeler
...
Dr. Joseph Von Schrader
...
Pat Kelly
...
Louise Adams
Mary Forbes ...
Mrs. Johnstone
Frances Moffett ...
Lou Hollings
...
Jane
Dorothy Stickney ...
Loretta
...
Violet
Edit

Storyline

Two sisters have arrived in New York straight from the country and settle down in one of those boarding houses for single women. May, the older, is a bit naive, while June, the younger, is much more worldly and world-wise. The next day, they go out looking for jobs and June makes sure her older sister gets one, while she snags herself a job and a saxophone playing beau named Pat Kelly. May also finds a beau, Boyd Wheeler, a young lawyer with a degree from Harvard. While June enjoys herself and the presents she gets from Kelly, May falls more and more in love with Boyd and rejects a proposal from her boss, archaeologist Dr. von Schrader, who then fires her. Without a job, May is free to spend even more time with Boyd, despite her sister's warnings. She is heartbroken when she learns that Boyd has gotten engaged to a society girl. June does her best to comfort her sister and decides to ask Dr. von Schrader to hire May again. Since von Schrader has fallen in love with June, he rehires ...

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 December 1931 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »

Quotes

Mae Thorpe: I couldn't've asked him to marry me. It would have seemed fresh.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
An interesting film. Lesbianism, fornication, illegitimacy, wisecracks .. who could ask for anything more?
3 August 2003 | by (NY, USA) – See all my reviews

Dorothy Arzner makes the film interesting by the way she depicts the clichéd story and by the touches she adds.

An aura of lesbianism pervades the beginning of the film, set in a woman's hostel, as women are seen dancing closely arm in arm, and one (Dorothy Stickney) winks and smiles suggestively at another (Judith Wood), with the latter winking back!

Lesbianism lays dormant the rest of the film as focus shifts to sisters Judith Wood and Dorothy Hall and their attempt to become "working girls." Double entendres fill the screen as Hall is hired by lecherous professor Paul Lukas, mostly because he feels she can give him "satisfaction." Lukas suggests she get boots to protect her feet during rainy weather; caught in a shoe store by a friend, Hall explains, "My boss told me to get some rubbers!"

At the shoe store, Hall meets rich Harvard man Charles 'Buddy' Rogers and falls in love. After months of courtship, they accidentally spend an evening alone together and the inevitable happens. Equally inevitable, Rogers, having conquered, silently abandons Hall and becomes engaged to Frances Dee, a woman from his own social class. Roger's conquest has lingering effects, though, as Hall is with child. When Judith Wood finds out, she gets a gun and demands Rogers marry her sister! Rogers has no qualms about complying. As he tells a friend, he prefers Hall over Dee: Dee is of his station, his social equal and no fun, while Hall, being of the working class, looks up to him and treats him like a God, and this he likes! This is an incredibly cynical film, especially where men are concerned!

Dorothy Hall steals the picture as Jane Thorpe, her last screen role. Judith Wood, who, billed as Helen Johnson played Dot in "The Divorcée" (1930), is equally good. Less so is Paul Lukas. He gives a confused performance; not completely sleazy, but not completely honorable, and not at all funny. Lukas gives a similar confused performance in another Arzner film, "Anybody's Woman" (1930).

This film didn't get much of a release in 1931, being effectively buried by Paramount. Little wonder given its content! It's well worth tracking down. The UCLA Television and Motion Picture Archive has beautifully restored it, along with five other Arzner Paramount films. It's an 8/10.


17 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?