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Belle of the Nineties (1934)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama | 21 September 1934 (USA)
Ruby Carter, the American Beauty queen of the night club-sporting world, shifts her operations from St. Louis to New Orleans (which kind of belies the Western genre designation), mostly to ... See full summary »



(story "It Ain't No Sin")
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brooks Claybourne (as John Mack Brown)
Ace Lamont
Molly Brant
Piano Player
James Donlan ...
Stuart Holmes ...
Edward Gargan ...
Libby Taylor ...
St. Louis Fighter
Morrie Cohan ...
Tyler Brooke ...


Ruby Carter, the American Beauty queen of the night club-sporting world, shifts her operations from St. Louis to New Orleans (which kind of belies the Western genre designation), mostly to get away from prizefighter Tiger Kid. Installed as the prize attraction of "The Sensation Club", ran by Ace Lamont, she quickly becomes the toast of the town and also marked as personal property by Ace, arousing the fury of Ace's former flame, Molly Brant. The not-overly-bright Tiger comes to town and is set for a title match with the champ by Ace, while the latter also has him steal some of Ruby's jewels. Ruby, no dumb-belle, figuring Ace has the fix in on the fight, uses some of her other jewels to lay a trap for Ace. Tiger confesses, after the fight, to Ruby his role in the jewel robbery while she hints that Ace was the one who slipped him the knock-out drops. Tiger goes after Ace, who, for his own reasons, has Molly locked in a closet. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

21 September 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Babe Gordon  »

Box Office


$800,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Film debut of Mike Mazurki. See more »


The songs "Memphis Blues" and "St Louis Blues", sung by West in 1890s New Orleans, were written and published in the 1910s by W. C. Handy. See more »


Ace Lamont: [eying Ruby] I've Thought of everything
Ruby Carter: I bet you have
See more »


Featured in Hollywood: The Gift of Laughter (1982) See more »


Memphis Blues
Written by W.C. Handy
Performed by Mae West and the Duke Ellington Orchestra
See more »

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User Reviews

BELLE OF THE NINETIES (Leo McCarey 1934) **1/2
24 December 2008 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

Mae West's first vehicle following the enforcement of the Production Code emerges as a lesser comedy, despite the involvement of the renowned McCarey (who directed many a star comedian around this time, including various Laurel & Hardy shorts, Eddie Cantor, The Marx Bros., W.C. Fields and Harold Lloyd).

As ever, West wrote the script herself: having gone through the titles included in the R1 DVD collection not too long ago, this film can be seen to have adhered strictly to formula – so that, in spite of offering nothing new (all the men, be they naïve or unscrupulous, invariably throw themselves at the star's feet who, of course, plays a notorious chanteuse), the undercasting of the chief supporting players and the severely reduced trademark double entendres, it still gets by on the consummate professionalism on display (conveyed in Paramount's recognizable in-house style). Among the highlights here are a marathon boxing match, a typically soulful number by the underprivileged black community and the fiery climax.

The film's brief 70-minute running-time (in PAL mode) and unassuming plot line makes this ideal for late-night viewing; however, such rampant streamlining also leads to an overly abrupt denouement in which events are neatly tied up via a montage of newspaper clippings!

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