The Wages of Sin (1938)

 |  Drama  |  14 July 1938 (USA)
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A hard-working woman trying to support her family and working at a menial, low-paying job falls for a low-life and before she knows it, he has her working as a prostitute in a bordello.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Constance Worth ...
Marjorie Benton
Willy Castello ...
Tony Kilonis
Florence Jones
Fat Pearl
Paula Bromleigh ...
Bordello Girl
Frank LaRue ...
Pa Benton
Rose Plumer ...
Ma Benton (as Rose Plummer)
'John' in Room 530
Betty Wonder ...
Bordello Girl
Jan Duggan
Edward Argyle
Martha Chapin ...
Kenneth Harlan ...
Laundry Owner
Dave Daggett


A hard-working woman trying to support her family and working at a menial, low-paying job falls for a low-life and before she knows it, he has her working as a prostitute in a bordello.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Girls Led to Ruin by Unscrupulous Men See more »







Release Date:

14 July 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Female Slaves  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The roadhouse sequence is included as supplemental material on Something Weird Video's DVD triple-feature release of Marihuana (1936), Assassin of Youth (1937) and Reefer Madness (1936). See more »


In the roadhouse, when everybody is dancing, a woman in a bonnet-like hat is shown to be simultaneously on the dance floor and seated at a table behind Marjorie and Bruce. See more »


[Bruce whispers something in Marge's ear]
Marjorie Benton: Leave me alone! Leave me alone!
Florence Jones: What's the matter, Marge?
Marjorie Benton: Oh, he insulted me!
Bruce: That was no insult, stupid. That was a proposition. Take it or leave it.
See more »


Featured in American Grindhouse (2010) See more »


Listen to the Mocking Bird
Lyrics by Septimus Winner and music by Richard Milburn
See more »

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User Reviews

Another expose on Prostitution, and how good girls should always stay home!
3 November 2000 | by (Edmonton, Ab.) – See all my reviews

Willis Kent produced this film with famed exploitation producer Louis Sonney, it's a story about a hard working woman named Majorie who works in a laundry plant trying to support her lazy family. She gets into an argument with them when she wants to go out one night and have some fun, after all she is the main breadwinner and should be untitled to some fun. So she goes out, meets a boy and gets thrown out of her home (stupid family, they threw away free money). The Boy she meets keeps telling her that he will marry her as soon as his divorce to his ex-wife is finalized...but months pass and nothing comes of it. Next thing you know her boyfriend is pimping her at Fat Bearl's Brothel, from which she eventually escapes. She tracks down her pimping boyfriend and kills him in and some Dame that he was setting up to his next sugar mama. The film ends with the jury debating whether she should go to prison or be set free. Interesting enough at the films close there is a chance for viewers to send in a essay that argues fair verdict, with a possibility in winning 1000 bucks for the best answer!

Filmed at a time when the depression was in full swing, public feelings and paranoia was not as high as in the early 20th century about white slave traders. Exploitation films dealing with the subject matter were rampant during this time when Lucky Luciano was busted for prostitution rings. In fact it was Lucky Luciano who was often portrayed in these films under a thinly veiled guise, as being solely responsible in shady dealings of white middle-upper class women being abducted and made to work in seedy brothels.

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