6.7/10
43
3 user 1 critic

Cafe Hostess (1940)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | 11 January 1940 (USA)
Jo (Ann Dvorak), a "percentage girl" at the notorious Club 46, is in despair. She can see no way out of the dreary and sordid routine of entertaining customers - called drinking and dancing... See full summary »

Director:

Sidney Salkow

Writers:

Harold Shumate (screenplay), Tay Garnett (story) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Preston Foster ... Dan Walters
Ann Dvorak ... Jo
Douglas Fowley ... Eddie Morgan
Wynne Gibson ... Annie
Arthur Loft ... Steve Mason
Bruce Bennett ... Budge
Eddie Acuff ... Scotty
Bradley Page ... Al
Dorothy Comingore ... Tricks (as Linda Winters)
Beatrice Blinn ... Daisy
Dick Wessel ... Henchman Willie
Peggy Shannon ... Nellie
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Storyline

Jo (Ann Dvorak), a "percentage girl" at the notorious Club 46, is in despair. She can see no way out of the dreary and sordid routine of entertaining customers - called drinking and dancing in 1940 - and, at a signal from piano player Eddie Morgan (Douglas Fowley), rolling them for their money. Eddie, besides being brutal to her and spending all her money, is also carrying on an affair with another girl. Jo's only friend is Annie (Wynne Gibson), a former actress but now a drink-sodden derelict. Annie keeps to herself the knowledge that it was Eddie who threw the knife that killed a petty racketeer who was too attentive to Jo. Sailor Dan Walters (Preston Foster) and two of his pals arrive from a cruise and his good nature delights Joe, but at a wink from Eddie, Jo attempts to steal his money. Dan swallows his disillusionment and returns to the cafe, and he and Jo enjoy a day-long picnic together. She accepts his marriage proposal and go to an up-state town where he has a job waiting. ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"How About Another Little Drink, Honey?" (It's probably loaded!) See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 January 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Street of Missing Women See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Remake of Her Man (1930) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Look at all those B-girls!
21 January 2019 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

When the film begins, there is a blurb announcing that the film is about Bar girls, or 'B-girls'...women who work in bars and encourage men to drink and spend their money. Soon the scene cuts to a clip joint run by Eddie where a variety of women of easy virtue work. Their job is to get the money out of the customers...and in some cases this means setting up guys with big wads to get rolled in the alley for their cash or lifting their wallets. An old timer at the club, Jo (Ann Dvorak), is getting sick of the life as well as Eddie's promises to marry her. Into this joint comes a nice guy, a sailor named Dan (Preston Foster). Do Dan and Jo stand a chance? It's unlikely since Eddie isn't the type to just let a girl go without a fight. To Eddie, they're his property.

While it's never said, I assume many viewers realize that in reality, these B-girls did tricks as well...though with the Production Code of 1934, such things could only be vaguely implied....and it's REALLY vague here. In fact, because of the subject matter many things are really vague in the film...such as the implication that Eddie is fooling around with one of the other B-girls. Still, in spite of this, the film is interesting and worth seeing....and awfully seedy for a Post-Code film.


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