Women Are Trouble


60m 1936
Women Are Trouble

Brief Synopsis

A small-town news hen goes after a big-city job by investigating a vicious protection racket.

Film Details

Genre
Crime
Mystery
Release Date
Jul 31, 1936
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
Distribution Company
Loew's Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
60m
Film Length
6 reels

Synopsis

Following a series of robberies and murders perpetrated by the Tim Gleason gang, Eldridge, the head of the liquor control board, announces that he has information that will finally bring the gang to justice. Meanwhile, Matt Casey, a reporter for The Star tells his editor, Bill Blaine, that he has the same inside information as Eldridge. While they are talking, Ruth Nolan, a small town girl, interrupts them and asks for a job, but Bill doesn't take women reporters seriously and turns her down. Ruth determines to get an exclusive with Eldridge, and follows him, but instead of an interview, she witnesses his murder when his car is pushed off a wharf by a truck. Bill gives Ruth a job after her scoop, but Matt still thinks that women shouldn't be reporters, and refuses to work with her. He then traces the truck used in the murder and helps the police arrest the driver, Murty. When Bill sends Ruth and Matt to the police station to interview Murty, Matt makes her stay in the car in the alley. While she passes the time taking pictures, she accidentally photographs a man carrying a camera. Soon Matt rushes to the car and reveals that Murty was shot by a man disguised as a cameraman. Though Ruth knows she has gotten the story, she doesn't tell Matt. After the disguised cameraman tells members of the gang about Ruth's photograph, they accost her and Matt as they enter The Star building, and take her camera. When Bill finds out what has happened he is furious, until Ruth shows him that she hid the film in her purse, thus enabling The Star to print the gunman's picture on the front page. Next, Ruth and Matt are assigned to interview Mrs. Murty. After Matt is thrown out of the apartment by Mrs. Murty, Ruth goes in and pretends to be a theatrical agent. She doesn't get a story either, but Bill helps her write a trumped up story about a friend of Eldridge's who is going to reveal his secret information to the police. Though Matt doesn't like Ruth's methods, he is attracted to her and becomes jealous when she agrees to go to the Press Club Masked Ball with Bill. To make Bill jealous, Matt decides to invite Frances, Bill's ex-wife, who still loves Bill, but only sees him when she comes for her alimony checks. Because she is wearing a mask, Bill doesn't recognize Frances and makes a play for her when Matt and Ruth are dancing. Unknown to the real guests, two gangsters have come to the ball to get Ruth out of the way and are wearing disguises. The two men follow her when Bill takes her home, then kidnap the couple. The next day, Bill fruitlessly tries to convince the gangsters that Ruth's story was a fake, but they don't believe him. They are about to shoot him when Matt, who trailed the men by tracking down the costumer from whom they rented their disguises, jumps into the apartment through the window and brandishes a gun. He loses the upper hand when Gleason arrives shortly thereafter, and orders his men to kill the three prisoners when the noise of the next passing elevated train can muffle the shots. Just then, Police Inspector Matson arrives with his men and saves Ruth, Matt and Bill. Finally, with the case closed, Matt decides that he likes women reporters after all, and Bill decides that it is cheaper to remarry Frances than to continue paying her alimony.

Film Details

Genre
Crime
Mystery
Release Date
Jul 31, 1936
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
Distribution Company
Loew's Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
60m
Film Length
6 reels

Articles

Women Are Trouble


The savvy, snappy gal reporter, as immortalized by Rosalind Russell in His Girl Friday (1940), was one of the most durable archetypes of the post-Code era. While Women Are Trouble entered a crowded field of over 70 (!) female detective/reporter movies made in the 1930s, its tale about gangland murders solved by the reluctantly partnered old hand reporter Matt Casey( Stuart Erwin) and eager novice Ruth (Florence Rice) stands out from the pack for two reasons: First, the original story was written (likely exclusively for MGM) by George Coxe, a veteran of the golden age of detective pulps most known for creating the popular crime photographer-turned-gumshoe Flash Casey. Second, the way Ruth tenaciously earns the respect of the men around her, many who don't believe dames should walk the tough newsman's beat, gives lasting satisfaction to those in the audience who gain satisfaction in knowing a woman who sticks to the truth of her hunches is eventually heard, acknowledged, and believed.

By Violet LeVoit
Women Are Trouble

Women Are Trouble

The savvy, snappy gal reporter, as immortalized by Rosalind Russell in His Girl Friday (1940), was one of the most durable archetypes of the post-Code era. While Women Are Trouble entered a crowded field of over 70 (!) female detective/reporter movies made in the 1930s, its tale about gangland murders solved by the reluctantly partnered old hand reporter Matt Casey( Stuart Erwin) and eager novice Ruth (Florence Rice) stands out from the pack for two reasons: First, the original story was written (likely exclusively for MGM) by George Coxe, a veteran of the golden age of detective pulps most known for creating the popular crime photographer-turned-gumshoe Flash Casey. Second, the way Ruth tenaciously earns the respect of the men around her, many who don't believe dames should walk the tough newsman's beat, gives lasting satisfaction to those in the audience who gain satisfaction in knowing a woman who sticks to the truth of her hunches is eventually heard, acknowledged, and believed. By Violet LeVoit

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

This film was Errol Taggart's first film as a director. According to information contained in Screen Achievements Bulletin, George Harmon Coxe's story was published, however, no other available sources call it a published story and no publication information has been located. As Coxe, who wrote many published short stories, also worked as a writer at M-G-M in the 1930s, his story was probably an original for the screen. Information in the file on the film in the AMPAS Library notes that although there was a Writer's Guild rule that producers were not to receive screenplay credit, the rule did not apply in this case. The reason for the exception was that Michael Fessier, who co-produced the film with Lucien Hubbard, actually wrote the entire screenplay and the only other writer credited by Screen Achievements Bulletin, Richard Blake, wrote a treatment that amounted to "far less that 15% of the total value of the screenplay." The memo continued that "the intention of the clause...was to keep producers from making minor changes in scripts and hogging all the credit, but that in a case like this...he should get sole credit for the screenplay."