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Vanity Street

Vanity Street(1932)

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Crying Boy

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FULL SYNOPSIS

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Jeanie Gregg, an innocent blonde beauty who is starving and desperate, throws a brick through the window of a drugstore located next to the Ziegfeld Theatre in hopes of being arrested and sent to jail, where she will be warm and given food. Instead, brawny Irish policeman Brian Murphy gives her the key to his apartment and obtains a job for her in the Ziegfeld Follies chorus. They remain friends after she secures her own apartment across the hall from him, although he is so busy pursuing criminals that he pays little attention to her. Jeanie is in love with the man who saved her, however, and refuses to date anyone else, especially Val French, a gigolo who is betraying both Follies star Fern Cavan and wealthy socialite Mrs. Dantry. Trying to persuade Jeanie to forget Murphy, French offers her a trip to Europe, and when he tricks Fern into giving him $2,000 toward the journey, he discovers that she has many more thousands in her safe. French robs Fern, then, in collaboration with crooked photographer Shorty, blackmails Mrs. Dantry with scandalous photographs. Soon after, the lonely Jeanie joins Murphy on a radio call without being invited, and he chastises her for endangering herself in the shootout that occurs. Misunderstanding his harshness, Jeanie resolves to "paint the town red" with the stage door lotharios whom she despises. After learning that Jeanie has decided to accompany French to Europe, a dejected Murphy goes to a speakeasy, where he hears Shorty drunkenly catalog his partner's crimes. At the same time, Fern hides in French's apartment, intent on killing him for his callous treatment of her. French enters with Jeanie, who changes her mind about the affair and flees in hysterics. Fern then emerges from the shadows and kills her former lover. When Murphy arrives to arrest French for blackmail, he finds the gigolo's body and Jeanie's hat, which she had left behind. This evidence forces Murphy to arrest and imprison Jeanie, although he believes in her innocence. Fern then discovers that her money is missing and, unaware that French's body has been discovered, returns to his apartment. There, she is caught by Murphy, but she claims that she shot French in self-defense. Jeanie is then released and embraced by her heroic policeman.