Dark Manhattan (1937)

Genres - Crime, Romance  |   Run Time - 77 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Dark Manhattan is an all-black melodrama, aimed at what were once known as "colored" movie houses. Ralph Cooper stars as anti-hero Curley Thorpe, the head of all protection rackets in Harlem. Curley begins to think about reforming when he falls in love with virginal nightclub chanteuse Cleo (Cleo Herndon). Alas, a rival gang begins encroaching upon Thorpe's territory, resulting in the climactic death of the poor fellow in a hail of bullets. Production-wise, Dark Manhattan is several notches above most of the cheapie all-black films of the era, with good direction and choreography compensating for the haphazard camerawork and uneven performances.

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Keywords

bad-guy-turns-good, gangster, killing, love, nightclub, rival, songwriter, tragic-love