Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Marked Woman was the most famous of the late-1930s films based on New York DA Thomas Dewey's attack on vice lord Lucky Luciano; Paid to Dance was among the least famous. All-purpose Columbia leading lady Jacqueline Wells plays Joan Bradley, a long-suffering hoofer in the seedy dime-a-dance joint controlled by racketeer Jack Miranda (Arthur Loft). Like her fellow "hostesses," Joan is expected to clip the customers for their bankrolls -- and, it is implied, offer their bodies as well as their terpsichorean skills (though we're assured that Joan is still pure of heart and every other portion of her anatomy). Crusading detective William Dennis (Don Terry) vows to save Joan and her ilk from Miranda's clutches, but it takes plenty of brains and muscle to topple the villain's criminal empire. Billed last, Ralph "Dick Tracy" Byrd has a marvelous moment when he takes on two hoodlums at once -- and wins!
bad-guy, damsel-in-distress, detective, good-guy, investigation, private-detective, dance [art], gangster