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Marked Woman (1937)

Synopsis:
In this roman-a-clef for the infamous Lucky Luciano Trial, Mary Dwight and four roommates work as hostesses at the Club Intime, a "clip joint" that offers gambling, liquor, and female companionship to the "big spender" clientèle. When ruthless thug and pimp Johnny Vanning takes over all the clubs in town, the girls are forced to follow Vanning's rules and kick back on their "tips" in exchange for protection. Although she is not a hardened old hand like Gabby and Estella, Mary knows enough to sidestep Vanning's amorous advances. Unfortunately the more naive Mary Lou is impressed by Vanning's oily veneer of materialism and accepts invitations to "entertain" at the gangster's private parties. Mary's naive younger sister Betty arrives from college just when Mary and her roommates are arrested as material witnesses in the murder of one of the casino's non-paying customers. Vanning's corrupt lawyer frees the others but pressures Mary to commit perjury in order to discredit crusading District Attorney David Graham. Disillusioned by her sister's lifestyle. Betty consents to accompany Emmy Lou to one of Vanning's private parties where the gangster ends up killing her for not submitting to the advances of one of the party's guests. Mary decides to tell the truth to the D.A., and is beaten to disfigurement by one of Vanning's hoods. Even so, Mary agrees to testify - and at her bedside, all the other hostesses decide to follow her example in the coming hearing. [original by Gabe Taverney]
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