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Party Girl (1958)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 15 February 1959 (UK)
Lawyer Thomas Farrell is a defender of crooks. Vicki Gayle encourages him to improve his reputation, but mob king Rico Angelo insists otherwise.



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Complete credited cast:
... Thomas Farrell
... Vicki Gaye
... Rico Angelo
... Louis Canetto
... Jeffrey Stewart
... Genevieve
... Cookie La Motte
... Danny Rimett
... Lou Forbes
Kem Dibbs ... Joey Vulner
Patrick McVey ... Detective O'Malley
... Party Girl / Ginger D'Amour
Myrna Hansen ... Party Girl / Joy Hampton
Betty Utey ... Party Girl / Cindy Consuelo


Lawyer Thomas Farrell has made a career defending crooks in trials. He has never realized that there is a downside to his success, until he meets the dancer Vicki Gayle. She makes him decide to get a better reputation. But mob king Rico Angelo *insists* that he continues his services. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Lowdown on the Girls Who Get Around...in Chicago! See more »


Not Rated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

15 February 1959 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Party Girl - Das Mädchen aus der Unterwelt  »


Box Office


$1,758,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,130,000, 31 December 1958

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,380,000, 31 December 1958
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This film did well at the box office, earning MGM a profit of $454,000 ($3.83M in 2017) according to studio records. This film pulled in a higher gross overseas than in the USA and Canada, a rare event for the time. See more »


Although the film is set in the early Thirties, the hairstyles, fashions, interior decoration, and choreography are in the style of the Fifties. At one point Lee J Cobb calls Cyd Charisse a "chick," a slang term not used until the Forties. See more »


Party Girl: Only a man... how do you do it Vicki?
Vicki Gaye: I made up my mind a long time ago, never get crowded into a corner. Never let them get too close. After awhile, they go away.
Party Girl: You've never been in their corner, with your looks?
Vicki Gaye: Just once. In a dark and dirty little barn back home in Oklahoma. I was fifteen. Very romantic.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: Chicago In The Early Thirties See more »


Referenced in Los atracadores (1962) See more »


Party Girl
Music by Nicholas Brodszky
Lyrics by Sammy Cahn
Performed by Tony Martin (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

A Film Noir/Romance/Non-Musical Musical Set in a 1930s that Looks Like the 1950s
18 November 2013 | by See all my reviews

I wasn't surprised to read that director Nicholas Ray was allowed little creative control of "Party Girl." His sensibilities peek through here and there, but it's more of an MGM film than Nicholas Ray's. The movie is set in the 1930s, but it looks like the 1950s. It's been called a film noir, but it looks like a musical—a musical with no music, though leading lady Cyd Charisse (the titular party girl Vicki) gets a couple dance numbers. A large portion of the movie bogs down on Charisse's relationship with a reluctant mob lawyer (Robert Taylor), at which point "Party Girl" turns into a romantic melodrama. Then in the final act it once again becomes a crime film.

"Party Girl" is fairly gripping when it focuses on its seedier elements — some of the violence is startlingly bloody for its day — but it's hampered by the tonal shifts. The script, as other reviewers have pointed out, has more than a few ludicrous moments, like a "miracle" surgery and some unrealistic beliefs about how the justice system operates. The acting is fairly solid, especially by Taylor and Lee J. Cobb, as mob boss Rico Angelo. John Ireland and Corey Allen also make strong impressions in their roles as sleazy, hot-tempered hoods. For me, the weakest performance is from Charisse. She's beautiful and she's got the legs, but I found her performance a little stilted (according to a review by critic Glenn Erickson, Charisse resisted being directed by Ray). I kept thinking if you dropped the dancing, Ida Lupino or Ray's ex Gloria Grahame would've been more interesting choices for the role of Vicki (though understandably there are reasons why Grahame would never be hired). All and all, "Party Girl" is notable for some effective scenes and performances, but it's one of Nicholas Ray's lesser films.

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