Frisco Jenny was orphaned by the 1906 earthquake and fire and has become the madame of a prosperous bawdy house. She puts her son up for adoption and he rises to prominence as district ... See full summary »
Frisco Jenny was orphaned by the 1906 earthquake and fire and has become the madame of a prosperous bawdy house. She puts her son up for adoption and he rises to prominence as district attorney dedicated to closing down such houses. When her underling Dutton proposes telling the DA that Frisco Jenny is his birth mother, she kills the underling not to cause trouble for her son now the successful DA, she must face execution. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
Overblown drama from Warner has Ruth Chatterton playing 'Frisco' Jenny, a woman growing up in a brothel with her father. She's pregnant by a man but her father refuses to let her marry and just as he says no the 1906 San Francisco earthquake strikes, killing the father. Jenny is left poor so she gives her son to a rich family and she slowly starts to rebuild her life through illegal activities. Years later, Jenny commits a murder to prevent her now grown son (Donald Cook) from finding out that she's his real mother. Just to add more melodrama, the son is the D.A. who is going to prosecute her. Even with all that said, this film is just overbearing with all the drama and sadness it tries throwing at the viewer. Director WIlliam A. Wellman really doesn't bring too much to these emotional scenes even though he manages to get a good performance from Chatterton. The best moment in the film is the earthquake, which looks terrific. Some actual footage from the 1906 event is used but the special effects are just as impressive.
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