Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Gambling With Souls|
Actors: Martha Chapin, Wheeler Oakman, Bryant Washburn, Gay Sheridan, Vera Steadman
Director: Elmer Clifton
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
It's a bust!
Steven Hellerstedt | 06/22/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Cautionary tale from 1936 about gambling and the dire effects it has on those who fall into its foul grasp.
Martha Chapin plays the pretty platinum wife of an up and coming doctor who is introduced to The Club by her false best friend Molly.
This is an early "Adult Only" feature that proudly promised to show "Women of today sold into bondage" and "Scarlet girls chained to the vultures of vice." In other words, like Reefer Madness, Slaves in Bondage, Maniac, and other movies of their ilk, a veneer of a social message was spread over a pit of vice, the veneer being just thick enough to allow the film to be released, if only on the vaudeville circuit.
Okay, gambling is bad and Martha Chapin - Mae Miller in the movie - is soon $10,000 in debt - a fortune in 1936. False friend Molly had arranged, with the gambling den owner, for this to happen. Mae becomes Molly's girl #78 and her descent begins in earnest.
Although there's a healthy story-to-sleaze ratio in this one, the real reason it was made was to show Mae changing from bed clothes to silk gown and from day clothes to bed clothes. To delight us with an extended scene of her first night of iniquity with `Million Dollar' Taylor and regale us with a gaggle of goosey shady women teasing a dour hayseed. Racy stuff for the day but this one would barely rate a PG today. From camera angles to naughty words GAMBLING WITH SOULS is the soul of discretion.
The platinum haired Chapin has four more movie credits than I do, and since acting was low on the list of what was being asked of her I'd say she turned in a credible job. I added a star for the snarl she wears after The Fall. Makes her look kind of like a cross between Jane Russell and Elvis Presley.
I don't have a developed appreciation for campy movies, so fans of that type of film may enjoy GAMBLING WITH SOULS more than I did. The transfer print is in rough shape, with a number of frames missing in many spots.