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The Woman Racket (1930)

Passed | | Crime, Drama, Romance | 24 January 1930 (USA)
During a raid on a speakeasy, a cop finds himself attracted to a pretty female employee. Instead of arresting her and taking her to jail, he not only helps her escape but takes her out to ... See full summary »


Albert H. Kelley (as Albert Kelley), Robert Ober | 1 more credit »


Philip Dunning (based on a play by), Frances Dunning (based on a play by)




Complete credited cast:
Tom Moore ... Tom
Blanche Sweet ... Julia
Sally Starr ... Buddy
Robert Agnew ... Rags (as Bobby Agnew)
John Miljan ... Chris
Tenen Holtz ... Ben
Lew Kelly Lew Kelly ... Tish
Tom London ... Hennessy
Eugene Borden Eugene Borden ... Lefty
Jack Byron Jack Byron ... Duke (as John Byron)
Nita Martan Nita Martan ... Rita (scenes deleted)
Richard Travers ... Wardell


During a raid on a speakeasy, a cop finds himself attracted to a pretty female employee. Instead of arresting her and taking her to jail, he not only helps her escape but takes her out to dinner. Eventually they marry, but it's not long before the new bride starts to yearn for the excitement of her life back at the speakeasy. Against her husband's wishes, she goes back there and is noticed by the joint's owner, who offers her a job. She decides to take the job, leave her husband and go back to her old life, but things don't turn out quite the way she expected. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


THE ROMANCE OF A NIGHT-HOSTESS! (Print Ad- Vancouver Sun, ((Vancouver, BC)) 6 November 1930)


Crime | Drama | Romance







English | Yiddish

Release Date:

24 January 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Lights and Shadows See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Talkie debut in a feature film for Blanche Sweet. She made three talkies in 1930 and retired from the screen but returned for some bits parts several decades later. See more »


When they open the office door, the music from the night club can be heard, and when they shut it the music cannot be heard. At one point the music turns off before the door is actually shut. See more »


Singin' in the Rain
(1929) (uncredited)
Music by Nacio Herb Brown
Lyrics by Arthur Freed
A few bars played offscreen by the band at the nightclub
See more »

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User Reviews

Worth Watching Only for Sweet
30 July 2011 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

Woman Racket, The (1930)

** (out of 4)

A cop (Tom Moore) saves a show girl (Blanche Sweet) from a pinch and soon the two are married. Things start off well but soon the wife grows bored of her housewife role and soon she's back in the nightclubs where she gets caught up with a dangerous gangster (John Miljan). THE WOMAN RACKET is your typical crime picture from MGM and sadly it's really not all that good. I think the main reason for people to tune into this thing is for Sweet who most film buffs will remember from her remarkable work with D.W. Griffith. This was one of her few sound films so that will be the main draw and there's no doubt that she's the best thing in the movie. As someone who has seen over a hundred Griffith films, it's always fun seeing his original troupe in other people's work. With Sweet she was always playing that "down home girl" and she was usually dressed in rags or made to look less attractive. It was really pretty strange seeing her in this role playing a sexy singer who uses her looks to gain a thing or two. I was really caught off guard at how well Sweet looked in this role but she also comes across extremely charming. There wasn't a single second where you don't believe her in the part and she perfectly sells that sexuality and charm. Moore, on the other hand, doesn't come off as well. I think he's a tad bit too laid back at times and it seems like he was struggling with some of the dialogue at times. He's certainly far from horrible but he doesn't add too much. Miljan is pretty good in the role of the gangster as he has no trouble coming off like a snake and he makes it easy to hate this character. Like many early talkies, this one here suffers from talking way too much as there are way too many dialogue scenes that just keep on and on. There are a couple musicals numbers, which aren't too bad and especially those performed by Sweet. Buffs will notice Sammy Lee served as musical director and he would eventually become a director at the studio doing various musical shorts. THE WOMAN RACKET just doesn't have enough life, energy or style to make it work so in the end it's mainly for those interested in Sweet.

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