Learning Difficulty





Recommended by Title

Recommended by Disability

Limb & Spinal Conditions: Minor Films   no photo.
TitleParty Girl (1958)
Alternative/Original Title
DirectorNicholas Ray
CastRobert Taylor Cyd Charisee Lee J. Cobb
NotesA disabled lawyer working for the mob falls in love with a dancer and tries to break free from his masters. Robert Taylor plays the bent and flash lawyer who walks with a limp and the aid of a fancy stick. At one of his boss's parties he notices a chorus girl (Cyd Charisee) who has been paid $100 to attend. (Though her wardrobe would have cost thousands). In court we see him exaggerating his limp and defending one of the gangsters on a murder charge. He gets the gangster off. As he falls in love with the showgirl he of course needs to justify his wrong doings. And he tells her that he was injured aged 12 dropping from the girder of a swing bridge. The kids he played with made fun of his limp and he decided he wanted respect. So he studied law and the quickest way to the top was through criminal law and defending gangsters. Are you taking notes on how to get respect? But pause a moment. On the way to the top he married another showgirl on whom he doted but she couldn't stand the sight of his crooked body. And of course the new showgirl wants to reform him. She's already reformed herself by returning the $100 she was given for going to the party. Alongside reform comes the big cure. An interesting point is that he mentions he also has a lot of pain, something which is barely mentioned in films involving disabled characters. With new developments in surgery he can be 'wired up' and be able to walk again. But this means leaving his new love for a whole year. It may be the fashion of the fifties that an American would need to go to Europe for an operation but it's also a plot device presumably to distance him from his notorious past. In another twist his wife turns up threatening to have him back when he's cured. On his return from Europe almost able to walk un-aided the political/crime scene has changed. The D.A. is cleaning up town and his 'noble' gangster friends have teamed up with ruthless thugs. But the crooked lawyer becomes a material witness and despite the inevitable threats all ends well. The grime of crime is washed away. The lawyer is born again, true love blossoms and 'fittingly' he is no longer disabled. When the England football manager got the push for saying in an interview that disabled people were paying for the sins in a previous life I thought this was minority nonsense. But Hollywood was thinking along these lines all the time.

 Back to Home Page