I viewed an incomplete and damaged print of "Received Payment". The surviving footage is interesting enough to make me wish I'd seen the entire film, though it's clear that this is no masterpiece.
In the 1920s, many New York City hotels and restaurants offered a special type of entertainment on their rooftops: cabaret revue, with an emphasis on leggy showgirls and bawdy humour. The audiences for this fare were overwhelmingly stage-door Johnnies and older men on the make. The songwriters Rodgers and Hart got their start providing songs for one such cabaret.
Here we have Corinne Griffith as Celia Hughes, a roof dancer ... meaning, she performs in rooftop cabaret. To be specific, she dances at the Colconda Roof. Griffith is quite fetching in a ballerina-style costume, and she's graceful in her brief dancing sequences.
Naturally, she attracts the attention of several male customers. One is David Torrence, who thinks she might be his long-lost grand-daughter. Another is Charles Hammond, who tries to blackmail her. But the handsomest man on the rooftop is Kenneth Harlan, who of course loves her sincerely.
Harlan's character in this film is named Cary Grant. Yes, Cary Grant! Did a certain actor named Archie Leach steal his screen name from this movie? I think not. Cary Grant (the famous one) had an impressive stage career before he entered films, and at one point he played a stage role named Cary Lockwood. Where he got the Grant from, I dunno, but it's my understanding that he took the forename Cary from his own stage role.
Griffith's heroine in this movie lives in a boarding house run by a married couple named Starr (so I guess she's the Starr boarder). The actress who plays Mrs Starr attempts some comedy relief, but she's not very funny. In the fragments I viewed, I was impressed by this film's director: one Charles Maigne. Based on what I saw here, Maigne was a director of sufficient talent that I'd be interested in seeing more of his movies. Since I've viewed only fragments of "Received Payment", I shan't rate it.
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