Party Girl (January 1, 1930)
Released on January 1, 1943: A dramatic expose of the 'Party Girl' racket of 1930.
Directed by Victor Halperin
Written by George Draney, Victor Halperin and Monte M. Katterjohn from the sensational novel Dangerous Business, an Expose of Modern Business by Edwin Balmer
The Actors: Douglas Fairbanks Jr. (Jay Rountree), Jeanette Loff (Ellen Powell), Judith Barrie (Leeda Cather), Marie Prevost (Diana Hoster), John St. Polis (John Rountree), Sammy Blum (Sam Metten), Harry Northrup (Robert Lowry), Almeda Fowler (Maude Lindsay), Hal Price (Lew Albans), Charles Giblyn (Lawrence Doyle), Sidney D'Albrook (investigator/bartender), Lucien Prival (Paul Newcast), Florence Dudley (Miss Manning, secretary), Earl Burtnett (himeself, orchestra leader), Louise Carver (Di Hoster's masseuse), Henry Roquemore (party guest), Rolfe Sedan (Maitre D' at the party), Ellinor Vanderveer (Leeda's 'Mother')
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Don't Call Me Madam!
Several time during this expose of the 'party girl racket' the party girl 'Madam' running the operation keeps telling folk to please don't call her Madam Lindsay. This remarkably frank story could be re-told today with very few changes, although it hit movie theaters almost a hundred years ago. It could be called one of the 'Mothers, warn your daughters' genre of movie, but it just as well could be a 'Fathers, warn your sons' movie . . . in fact, that is what I would tag it as. Douglas Fairbanks Jr. is young Jay Rountree, son of the owner of a glass making business in the big city. He is fresh out of college and ready to be a man, with intentions of one day marrying his dad's secretary, young Ellen Powell, played by Jeanette Loff. Judith Barrie is a 'party girl' - one of Madam Lindsay's girls that are paid to whoop it up with businessmen at private parties. Her character Leeda Cather is in the family way because of her adventures with Paul Newcast (Lucien Prival), a big businessman who signs contracts for new business at parties that feature the party girls. Just as she is putting the pressure on the businessman to take care of her she meets young Jay Rountree (Doug Fairbanks Jr.) and as he is already on the way to being very drunk, she grabs him and they go out drinking together. The next thing we see is the young man waking up with a massive hangover in the bed of the party girl. She lets him believe that he had his way with her while he was drunk and forces him to marry her. He does 'the right thing' and marries the girl, and then the fun begins. We will learn that his old girlfriend, his dad's secretary, was a party girl before she got the job as his old man's secretary. And that isn't the only plot twist that jumps out at us as this adventure continues. The story gets incredibly complicated for a 1930 movie, and no simple solutions will magically appear in this motion picture, even though this pre-code story will indeed end mostly 'happily ever after.' Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter and enjoy the show.
Almeda Fowler as Madam Maude Lindsay
Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Jeanette Loff
Douglas Fairbanks Jr., as Jay Rountree, calls home to tell Dad that he is getting married to a party girl
Douglas Fairbanks Jr. peeks out of the elevator doors to see if he can crash the party
Douglas Fairbanks Jr., as Jay Rountree, wakes up in the party girl's bedroom
Earl Burtnett and his Biltmore Orchestra and Trio
Earl Burtnett trio
Ellinor Vanderveer in Party Girl
Florence Dudley as undercover girl Miss Manning listens to the frame-up
Hal Price and Jeanette Loff
Hall Price and Jeanette Loff in Party Girl
Harry Northrup and Marie Prevost
Harry Northrup as Rober Lowry in Party Girl
Jeanette Loff and Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
Jeanette Loff as Ellen Powell in Party Girl
Jeanette Loff in Party Girl
Jeanette Loff sings and plays piano
John St. Polis and Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
John St. Polis as John Rountree, glass manufacturer
John St. Polis in Party Girl
Judith Barrie and Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
Judith Barrie as party girl Leeda Cather
Judith Barrie faces John St. Polis
Judith Barrie in Party Girl
Judith Barrie snags Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
Judith Barrie woos Lucien Prival
Louise Carver as masseuse for Marie Prevost
Louise Carver in Party Girl
Lucien Prival as Paul Newcast
Lucien Prival in Party Girl
Marie Prevost as party girl Diana Hoster
Marie Prevost tries to get money from Lucien Prival
Marie Prevost in Party Girl
Almeda Fowler as Madam Maude Lindsay Party Girl
Sidney D'Albrook asnd Florence Dudley in Party Girl