Sunday, June 23, 2013


This movie was a lot of fun.  The always beautiful Barbara Stanwyck stars as member of a bank robbing gang.  During one of the robberies she's nabbed after the fact as a accomplice to the crime.  It looks like she's going to prison when a childhood friend who's now an up and coming preacher/social reformer takes a liking to her and pulls some strings to have her released...that is until, in a moment of weakness, she tells him that she actually was part of the robbery.  She refuses to rat out her gang so it's off to prison she goes.  She adapts to prison life pretty well and still gets tons of letters and visits from the preacher wanting her to change her ways.  Fat chance!

Fans of classic Hollywood will probably really like this film since they know what they're getting into, but less informed viewers will be surprised by the cheesiness of some of the scenes, especially the prison ones.  There's almost a complete lack of security and the ladies seem to have all the comforts of home including a hair salon and private rooms they can decorate however they want.  They can even have dogs!  And don't forget the crashout plot!  Holy shit!  But all of that just adds to the fun.  Another thing that made me smirk was the preacher's complete devotion to Barbara.  She could literally do about anything and he would forgive her.  It was pretty funny.  The actor (Preston Foster) did a fine job, but every time he was on screen I kept thinking how much better Ralph Bellamy would have been in that role.

Lightning-fast pace, more than one reference to lesbianism, action, new fish, references to prostitution, hatred of the police, a girl with a Joe E. Brown picture on her wall(!), strong supporting cast...LADIES THEY TALK ABOUT is a great Pre-Code movie, but best part is easily Stanwyck.  She's maybe the prettiest that I've ever seen her.  Check it out.