Lady For A Night (1942)

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    There are 26 replies in this Thread. The last Post () by lasbugas.

    • Lady For A Night (1942)



      Photo with the courtesy of lasbugas


      Plot Summary
      Gambling boat operator Jenny Blake throws over her gambler beau
      Jack Morgan in order to marry into high society.
      When her husband is killed in an attempt on her life,
      she is charged with his murder.
      Summary written by Jim Beaver

      Full Cast
      Joan Blondell .... Jenny 'Jen' Blake Alderson
      John Wayne .... Jackson Morgan
      Philip Merivale .... Stephen Alderson
      Blanche Yurka .... Julia Anderson
      Ray Middleton .... Alan Alderson
      Edith Barrett .... Katherine Alderson
      Leonid Kinskey .... Boris, Jack's Bodyguard
      Hattie Noel .... Chloe, Jenny's Maid
      Montagu Love .... Judge
      Carmel Myers .... Mrs. Dickson, the Mayor's Wife
      Dorothy Burgess .... Flo
      Guy Usher .... Governor
      Ivan Miller .... Mayor Dickson
      Patricia Knox .... Mabel
      Lew Payton .... Napoleon, Alderson's Servant
      Marilyn Hare .... Mary Lou
      Hall Johnson Choir
      Frank Orth .... Coroner (scenes deleted)
      Maxine Ardell .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Margaret Armstrong .... Governor's Wife (uncredited)
      Gertrude Astor .... Woman (uncredited)
      Loretta Barnett .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Bunny Bronson .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Margaret Bryson .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Hal Cooke .... Civic Leader (uncredited)
      Dudley Dickerson .... Black Specialty Dancer (uncredited)
      Jeanette Dickson .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Pearl Early .... (uncredited)
      Neely Edwards .... Announcer (uncredited)
      Edith Evanson .... Dressmaker (uncredited)
      Gladys Gale .... Mother (uncredited)
      Jack George .... Orchestra Leader (uncredited)
      Frances Gladwin .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Roy Gordon .... Mr. Crane (uncredited)
      Janet Graves .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Dolores Gray .... Dolores, a Singer (uncredited)
      Valerie Hall .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Howard C. Hickman .... Civil War General (uncredited)
      Betty Hill .... Governor's Daughter (uncredited)
      Marion Huston .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Jack Kenny .... Man Smacked on Head (uncredited)
      Jean Le Roy .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Charles McAvoy .... Policeman (uncredited)
      Merrill McCormick .... Card Player (uncredited)
      Gaby McLaughlin .... Dancer (uncredited)
      Charles F. Miller .... Father (uncredited)
      Howard M. Mitchell .... Civic Leader (uncredited)
      Eula Morgan .... Dowager (uncredited)
      Forbes Murray .... Defense Attorney (uncredited)
      William H. O'Brien .... King's Club Worker (uncredited)
      Dewey Robinson .... Horse Dealer (uncredited)
      Dick Rush .... Policeman (uncredited)
      Nancy Savoy .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Dorothy Schoemer .... Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Kathryn Sheldon .... Spinster in Audience (uncredited)
      Charles Sherlock .... Croupier (uncredited)
      Mickey Simpson .... Big Mike, the Floorman (uncredited)
      Henry 'Hot Shot' Thomas .... Black Man (uncredited)
      Martin Turner .... Black Attendant (uncredited)
      Minerva Urecal .... Spinster (uncredited)
      Corinne Valdez .... Lead Can-Can Dancer (uncredited)
      Tito Valdez .... Dancer (uncredited)
      Blue Washington .... Man Sitting Next to Chloe (uncredited)
      Pierre Watkin .... Prosecuter (uncredited)
      Leigh Whipper .... Joe Cupid, the Charm Seller (uncredited)
      Paul White .... Black Specialty Dancer (uncredited)
      Lloyd Whitlock .... Civic Leader (uncredited)
      Buck Woods .... Lazy Man in Hammock (uncredited)

      Writing Credits
      Garrett Fort (story)
      Isabel Dawn (screenplay) &
      Boyce DeGaw (screenplay) (as Boyce Degaw)

      Original Music
      David Buttolph

      Norbert Brodine


      This film inspired the name of one of the most famous World War 2 bombers, the B-17 "Memphis Belle", one of the first to complete a full combat tour of 25 missions against targets in Nazi Germany in May 1943. The aircraft was the namesake of pilot Captain Robert K. Morgan's sweetheart, Margaret Polk, a resident of Memphis, Tennessee. Morgan originally intended to call the B-17, Little One, after his pet name for her, but after Morgan and his co-pilot, Jim Verinis, saw this movie 'Lady for a Night', in which the leading character owns a riverboat named the Memphis Belle, he proposed that name to his crew.After their combat service the "Belle" and her crew were sent home on highly successful war bond tour. The "Belle" and her crew were also featured in an award winning 1944 documentary by William Wyler.

      Underneath the credits, there is some footage of extras dancing in front of
      the Alderson family's house.

      Filming Locations
      Republic Studios, Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, USA
      Best Wishes
      London- England

      The post was edited 12 times, last by ethanedwards ().

    • Lady for a Night is a 1942 drama film starring John Wayne.
      The World War II B-17 bomber the Memphis Belle is named after a steamboat in this film.

      This is a Joan Blondell film, featuring Duke.
      It's OK, not good but watchable.
      Duke make a poor attempt at comedy, and although
      he enjoyed comedy parts, this is a dreary one!

      Duke said at the time,
      It's a woman's picture

      Lady for a Night was his final picture, before the US entered WWII.

      Its critics found it out of step with, reality, highlighting class divide, 'stick with your own'
      and branded it racist and sexist.

      However, I thought it was just a bit of harmless fun.

      User Review
      Murder, music, and malice in old New Orleans.
      3 May 2001 | by mark.waltz (New York City)
      To start, this is not a John Wayne movie. Yes, he is in it, and yes, he is featured in a major role. However, his character is secondary. The primary character is Joan Blondell as Jenny Blake, the owner of a gambling boat on the Mississippi. Desperate to be accepted into society, Jenny is thrilled when she is announced Queen of the Mardi Gras, not knowing that man-about-town Jack Morgan (Wayne) rigged it. New Orleans society is aghast and boos her. She becomes more determined than ever to break into society, and accepts the proposal of drunken plantation owner Alan Aldredge (Ray Middleton) to become his wife.

      Alan's family, with the exception of his Aunt Katherine (Edith Barrett), is aghast at the entrance of Jenny into their blue-blooded family. Aunt Julia (Blanche Yurka), an evil looking woman, starts to scheme almost from the get-go, going out of her way to get rid of her new in-law. The gift of a blind horse as her own almost kills Jenny, and later Julia attempts to humiliate Jenny by arranging for no one to show up at the ball Jenny has planned. That is thwarted by Jack, who obviously has feelings for her. Julia's next step ends up in tragedy, with Jenny on trial for murder. But, with her luck, Jenny is saved from the hangman's noose, and learns a valuable lesson.

      This Republic "B" feature is actually a pretty lavish costume drama. Blondell, a wonderful leading lady at Warners in the 30's, gets to show off her singing and dancing abilities in the "Up in a Balloon" production number. Later, at Jenny's party, there is a campy rendition of "Ba Ba Ba Boom De Yay!" during which Jenny's lively black maid (Hattie Noel, a second rate yet funny Hattie McDaniel) gets into the act. It is a camp moment that is still treasured by those who adore over-the-top cinema.

      Wayne does not have much to do but step in to rescue Blondell in her times of need. This was not an important film for him, but for the cast playing the evil Alderson clan, it was a chance to show off their acting skills (or at least their hamming ability!). Phillip Merivale has little to do but disapprove of Jenny as Alan Alderson's elderly father, but his sisters (Yurka and Barrett) have great opportunitys to show off their talents. Yurka, best known as Madame DeFarge in the Selznick production of "A Tale of Two Cities", is equally evil here; she is a definate rival with Judith Anderson and Gale Sondergaard as the perfect screen villianess. A stage star in the 1910's and 20's, Yurka is a combination Lady MacBeth and Madame DeFarge as she sets on her sites to make Jenny miserable. Deliciously camp (my guess it was unintentional), Yurka is a delight to watch from start to finish. As her fragile sister Katherine, Edith Barrett (the first Mrs. Vincent Price) is the epitome of sweetness, a total contrast to her evil sister. The scene where Barrett accuses her sister of having murdered her fioncee years before is powerful stuff, and makes us realize that underneath her fear of her sister, Katherine has a strong side determined to come out.

      The less said about Middleton as Steve Alderson, the better. I will just say he is stiff, unromantic, and lacking in charisma. In other words-he was perfect as the husband Blondell couldn't love no matter how much money he had! While Hattie Noel's character may raise some eyebrows in today's society, she does create many laughs, especially when she arrives at the Alderson house by breaking down the side door when she is rebuffed by the stuffy black butler.

      Although Leonard Maltin gives the film only two stars, I have to disagree with his review. Although no cinema classic, it is a very entertaining and light-hearted film, even with its macabre plot developements. Perfect for a rainy afternoon or the late show, "Lady For a Night" is worth a look as a camp classic.
      Best Wishes
      London- England

      The post was edited 1 time, last by ethanedwards ().

    • Hi

      Lady For A Night was one of many pictures made around this time in which John Wayne wasn't supposed to act he was there to be looked at as the male lead supporting the woman star. Re-Union in France was another similar movie designed to bring Joan Crawford back to the forefront who she appeared opposite was academic.

      Lady From Louisiana was another such movie.


      Walk Tall - Talk Low
    • Re: Lady For A Night (1941)

      Here are a couple of posters. This first one is the same as the one Keith posted in his introductory post for the film, with a little deeper color.

      Lady For a Night-poster.jpg

      This second one is a 1953 reissue poster. As is the case most of the time, the reissue is not anywhere near as attractive as the original.

      Lady for a Night-1953 reissue poster.jpg