Midnight Mary (1933)

Genres - Crime, Mystery  |   Sub-Genres - Melodrama  |   Release Date - Jun 30, 1933 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 71 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Review by Hans J. Wollstein

At one point near the beginning of William Wellman's Midnight Mary, a down-and-out Loretta Young passes by a marquee advertising a Joan Crawford movie. An apt reminder indeed that this kind of romantic gangster melodrama masquerading as social commentary was in many ways pioneered by Crawford. Joan must have been otherwise engaged, however, and MGM instead borrowed Loretta Young from Fox. It didn't much matter; Mary Martin of Midnight Mary is yet another unfortunate victim of circumstances, a little more vulnerable, perhaps, due to Young's kinder, gentler interpretation, but it is still more or less the same Mary that had appeared on countless screens in the early '30s. Franchot Tone (soon to be the husband of Joan Crawford, incidentally) played the inevitable rich boy in his usual insouciant manner, while Ricardo Cortez, borrowed from Warner Bros., remains his tough-talking self. Also borrowed from Warner was cinematographer James Van Trees, but somehow the gutsy attitude of that studio is absent.