Race Suicide (1937)

61-62 mins | Drama | 1937

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HISTORY

This film begins with the following title: "The story of Race Suicide as depicted in this Real Life Drama is based upon facts gleaned from newspaper reports of the smashing of a well organized gang of illegal medical practitioners in one of our great American cities." The word "abortion" is not used in the film. This film was rejected by the New York State censors in 1937. Ohio initially passed it in 1937 after ordering deletions, then revoked their approval of the film, which they noted had also been run under the title of What Price Passion, as of 10 Feb 1940. Pennsylvania passed the film in 1938 after ordering deletions. ...

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This film begins with the following title: "The story of Race Suicide as depicted in this Real Life Drama is based upon facts gleaned from newspaper reports of the smashing of a well organized gang of illegal medical practitioners in one of our great American cities." The word "abortion" is not used in the film. This film was rejected by the New York State censors in 1937. Ohio initially passed it in 1937 after ordering deletions, then revoked their approval of the film, which they noted had also been run under the title of What Price Passion, as of 10 Feb 1940. Pennsylvania passed the film in 1938 after ordering deletions.

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SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
The Exhibitor
1 Jun 1938
---
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Marcel LePicard
Photog
Photog
FILM EDITOR
Robert Jahn
Ed
MUSIC
Musical numbers
SOUND
Sd tech
SOURCES
SONGS
"Apple Song," words and music by Milton Royce.
SONGWRITER/COMPOSER
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
What Price Passion
Production Date:

Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Real Life Dramas
9 November 1937
LP7564
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
61-62
Length(in feet):
5,460
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
SYNOPSIS

After a girl is found dead in Rudolph Von Hertsen's apartment, circumstantial evidence leads the coroner to urge the district attorney to prosecute Von Hertsen for her death due to an illegal operation. The coroner remarks that every large city has a gang which preys upon women who should have children and says this situation is little short of "race suicide." Dr. J. M. Randall of the Medical Acceptance Corporation visits Von Hertsen in jail and offers the best legal help if Von Hertsen agrees to work for him when he is released. Florence Davis, secretary to Mrs. Morris, who prides herself on her social prominence, gets pregnant by Mrs. Morris' son Charles, who has promised to marry her, although he actually is going off to college. Charles suggests that she go to Von Hertsen, who has been acquitted. Florence's abortion, for which Von Hertsen charges one hundred dollars, causes her great discomfort. When the shocked Mrs. Morris refuses to allow her to stay, Ann Martin, a married woman whom Florence met at Von Hertsen's when she had her third abortion, takes Florence home and introduces her as an old friend to her husband Ed, a gas station owner who has always wanted children. When the district attorney's detectives contact Ed, Ann confesses that because of the possibility of death she was afraid to have children, but she agrees to testify against the abortionists. Randall plans to have two thugs murder Ann, but they kill Florence by mistake. When Mrs. Morris' daughter Lynn learns of this, she and the district attorney's assistant Parker, who earlier saved Lynn from being seduced by ...

More Less

After a girl is found dead in Rudolph Von Hertsen's apartment, circumstantial evidence leads the coroner to urge the district attorney to prosecute Von Hertsen for her death due to an illegal operation. The coroner remarks that every large city has a gang which preys upon women who should have children and says this situation is little short of "race suicide." Dr. J. M. Randall of the Medical Acceptance Corporation visits Von Hertsen in jail and offers the best legal help if Von Hertsen agrees to work for him when he is released. Florence Davis, secretary to Mrs. Morris, who prides herself on her social prominence, gets pregnant by Mrs. Morris' son Charles, who has promised to marry her, although he actually is going off to college. Charles suggests that she go to Von Hertsen, who has been acquitted. Florence's abortion, for which Von Hertsen charges one hundred dollars, causes her great discomfort. When the shocked Mrs. Morris refuses to allow her to stay, Ann Martin, a married woman whom Florence met at Von Hertsen's when she had her third abortion, takes Florence home and introduces her as an old friend to her husband Ed, a gas station owner who has always wanted children. When the district attorney's detectives contact Ed, Ann confesses that because of the possibility of death she was afraid to have children, but she agrees to testify against the abortionists. Randall plans to have two thugs murder Ann, but they kill Florence by mistake. When Mrs. Morris' daughter Lynn learns of this, she and the district attorney's assistant Parker, who earlier saved Lynn from being seduced by a drunken older man, pose as a couple in search of an abortionist. Randall takes Lynn alone to Von Hertsen's house and, when she confesses her mission, threatens to give her an overdose. Parker races to save her, but Von Hertsen, who has become disgusted with the operation, instead injects Randall and turns state's evidence to help smash the racket.

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Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.