Lady Alyce Marshmorton must marry soon, and the staff of Tottney Castle have laid bets on who she'll choose, with young Albert wagering on "Mr. X." After Alyce goes to London to meet a beau... See full summary »
After accidentally killing the man who raped her and forced her into prostitution, a New Orleans woman flees to a Caribbean island. While she awaits her fiancé, the vicious local police chief sets his sights on her.
William A. Wellman
Small time con artist Lefty Merrill has co-organized a crooked dance marathon and set-up his girlfriend to win the prize money. When his partner disappears with money before the contest is ... See full summary »
Popular New York band leader Terry Rooney (Cagney) is offered a lucrative film contract out in Hollywood. Rooney and his soon-to-be wife pack up and head for California. Upon arriving, they meet Mr. Regan, the head of the studio, who believes that Rooney's true lack of desire for stardom is arrogance on the band leader's part. When his first film is huge success and a hit for the studio, Regan tries to hide the truth from Rooney. Feeling a need to get away from Hollywood, Rooney takes his wife on a South Seas honeymoon cruise, only to return to the real truth of his fame. Written by
Parts of the film are based on James Cagney's own experience. In the film, Cagney's character, Terry Rooney, is a New York band-leader and hoofer who goes to Hollywood to make a "tough guy" movie. When he gets back from his honeymoon cruise, Rooney discovers the movie has made him a star, and he is mobbed by autograph seekers outside a movie theater where his film is showing. Likewise, Cagney himself was a Broadway hoofer who went to Hollywood in 1930 to make movies. After several supporting roles, Cagney filmed his breakout movie, The Public Enemy (1931), in early 1931. When filming was completed, Cagney returned to New York, thinking the movie would be nothing special. A few months later, he was surprised to see a long line of movie-goers outside a New York theater where The Public Enemy (1931) was being shown. Cagney had become a star. See more »
Rita is in New York when she reads of Terry's supposed relationship with Steffie on the front page of the "Express" newspaper. Meanwhile in Hollywood, Terry learns of the false rumours in exactly the same way, from the exact front page of an identical "Express" newspaper. Props used the same newspaper for both coasts. Highly unlikely. See more »
This little-known film is surprisingly entertaining, with lots of pre-"Singin' in the Rain" pokes at Hollywood's star machine, good songs, and a few lively dance numbers, especially the one onboard ship. James Cagney is great as usual, and the supporting cast has some fine bits of their own, especially Gene Lockhart as arrogant but ineffectual studio head "B.O." Regan. William Frawley from "I Love Lucy" gets to show a different side as a tough and efficient publicist. Unusually, the film makes a small plea for treating minorities as full-fledged people (what a concept!), though how well it succeeds in that will be up to the individual viewer. The movie also proclaims that there's nothing wrong with women band leaders--an idea still unusual today. The production design will please 30's fans: the studio's offices are a small wonder of art deco intimidation, and even the regular movie theaters have signs with beautiful typography. Odd item to watch for: the shipboard cat boxing match--they wear gloves, so no one gets hurt, but some will find it cruel. But the film overall is a fine addition to musicals of the period.
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