It is the World War I period, and Peggy Martin, a showgirl and mistress to London Fiske, marries her love, handsome Monte Van Tyle. They move into the house on 56th street and have a baby, ...
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When the Manhattan investment firm of Sherwood Nash goes broke, he joins forces with his partner Snap and fashion designer Lynn Mason to provide discount shops with cheap copies of Paris couture dresses.
It is the World War I period, and Peggy Martin, a showgirl and mistress to London Fiske, marries her love, handsome Monte Van Tyle. They move into the house on 56th street and have a baby, Eleanor. Monte enlists in the army and is killed in action. Peggy is revisited by Fiske who wants her back or he'll commit suicide. She refuses his advances and the gun he brought accidentally goes off killing him. Peggy is convicted with murdered and jailed. Eleanor is told her mother is dead. Twenty years later, Peggy is released and meets gambler, Bill Blaine. The house on 56th street is now a gambling house owned by politician, Bonelli. Bill and Peggy get jobs there. Eleanor comes to visit them, and goes with Bill into his office. Bill threatens Eleanor, now a huge gambler, that he'll tell her husband about her huge debts. Eleanor kills Bill and Peggy takes the blame. Bonelli believes Peggy is innocent and offers to help her if she only stays at the house on 56th street.Written by
Lightning-paced drama directed by Robert Florey stars Kay Francis (top female star at Warners) as a chorus girl in 1905 who is pursued by an older man (John Halliday) who has no interest in marriage and a younger man (Gene Raymond) who wants to marry her. She opts for Raymond and becomes a society hostess and eventually has a baby. Later, when she learns Halliday is ill, she visits. He tries to commit suicide but Francis is convicted and jailed for 20 years. The baby daughter grows up (Margaret Lindsay). Out of jail, Francis goes by the name of Mrs. Stone and meets up with a gambler (Ricardo Cortez). They work in a speakeasy and everything is OK until the daughter shows up one night. The ironic ending is perfect.
At 68 minutes, this film whizzes along but is filled with lots of period detail and plot elements. Very nicely done. Kay Francis gets to transform from the frilly 1905 fashions and hair to a sleek henna-rinsed beauty in 1927 and finally to a slightly graying babe dealing cards in 1933. She's terrific, and the ending will surprise you.
Co-stars include Nella Walker, Henry O'Neill, Frank McHugh, Hardie Albright, and William "Stage" Boyd.
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