The Painted Woman (1932)

72-73 mins | Drama | 21 August 1932

Director:

John Blystone

Cinematographer:

Ernest Palmer

Editor:

Alex Troffey

Production Designer:

Joseph C. Wright

Production Company:

Fox Film Corp.
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HISTORY

The working titles of this film were After the Rain , Water-Front , Trade Winds and Tropical Lady . According to a pressbook, scenes were filmed at Catalina Island, and the three-masted schooner "Metha Nelson," which was also used in Fox's 1930 production of The Sea Wolf (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; F2.4868) and their 1931 production Seas Beneath (see below) was used in this film. Var noted the similarities between the characters in this film and those created by W. Somerset Maugham in his short story "Miss Thompson," on which United Artists based their film Rain , released later in the year (see below), by commenting that "Kiddo" is "as near to Sadie Thompson as it is possible to get without being a duplicate, and that goes also for other characters, besides the locale and the phonograph." According to a letter in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library, PCA director Joseph Breen suggested that Twentieth Century-Fox withdraw their request for a certificate of approval for re-issue in 1938 for the following reasons: "1) It is the story of a promiscuous woman who is apparently the mistress of a sea captain. 2) There is apparently a scene of a girl being attacked. 3) Various suggestive and vulgar ... More Less

The working titles of this film were After the Rain , Water-Front , Trade Winds and Tropical Lady . According to a pressbook, scenes were filmed at Catalina Island, and the three-masted schooner "Metha Nelson," which was also used in Fox's 1930 production of The Sea Wolf (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; F2.4868) and their 1931 production Seas Beneath (see below) was used in this film. Var noted the similarities between the characters in this film and those created by W. Somerset Maugham in his short story "Miss Thompson," on which United Artists based their film Rain , released later in the year (see below), by commenting that "Kiddo" is "as near to Sadie Thompson as it is possible to get without being a duplicate, and that goes also for other characters, besides the locale and the phonograph." According to a letter in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library, PCA director Joseph Breen suggested that Twentieth Century-Fox withdraw their request for a certificate of approval for re-issue in 1938 for the following reasons: "1) It is the story of a promiscuous woman who is apparently the mistress of a sea captain. 2) There is apparently a scene of a girl being attacked. 3) Various suggestive and vulgar lines." More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
16 Sep 32
p. 7.
HF
9 Jul 32
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
4 Aug 32
p. 3.
International Photographer
1 Sep 32
p. 36.
Motion Picture Herald
13 Aug 32
p. 31.
New York Times
16 Sep 32
p. 24.
Variety
20 Sep 32
p. 14.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
Asst cam
ART DIRECTOR
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
COSTUMES
Ward
MUSIC
PRODUCTION MISC
Still photog
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the unproduced play After the Rain by Alfred C. Kennedy (copyrighted 22 Jan 1931).
SONGS
"Say You'll Be Good to Me," words and music by James F. Hanley.
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Trade Winds
Tropical Lady
Water-Front
After the Rain
Release Date:
21 August 1932
Production Date:
6 June--mid July 1932
Copyright Claimant:
Fox Film Corp.
Copyright Date:
4 August 1932
Copyright Number:
LP3214
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
72-73
Length(in feet):
6,700
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
SYNOPSIS

At Singapore harbor, Kiddo, a singer in a dive, is warned by her lover, the brutish Captain Boynton, not to have relations with any other man while he is gone. After Boynton leaves, a drunken sailor tries to rape Kiddo, and after she smashes a water pitcher over his head, crushing his skull, she escapes to Boynton's boat. At sea, Kiddo resents Boynton's forced intimacies. When a sailor is found to have cholera, Boynton puts Kiddo ashore at the South Sea island village of Hitu-iva and orders her to keep away from the pearl divers while he is gone. Robert Dunn, a seedy American attorney, immediately tries to seduce Kiddo, but she refuses his advances. The next day, as Kiddo bathes in the nude in a lagoon, ex-marine Tom Brian, an upbeat, but conceited owner of a small pearl diving operation, taunts her. Kiddo acts indignant when Tom steals her clothes, but later acknowledges that he is a "good sort." After a servant girl at the village saloon dies from tuberculosis, Kiddo gets her job. When she receives a letter from Boynton telling her that he will return soon, she plans to leave the island, but ignores Dunn's offer to take her to Papeete. Tom, whose motto had been, "The world's my parking space; here today, gone tomorrow," now asks Kiddo to marry him. She reacts with a mixture of tears and laughter and tells Tom her past: she was kicked out of her father's house at age sixteen for staying out late and has since succumbed to men's promises up and down the coast. She spurns Tom's offer, but invites him ... +


At Singapore harbor, Kiddo, a singer in a dive, is warned by her lover, the brutish Captain Boynton, not to have relations with any other man while he is gone. After Boynton leaves, a drunken sailor tries to rape Kiddo, and after she smashes a water pitcher over his head, crushing his skull, she escapes to Boynton's boat. At sea, Kiddo resents Boynton's forced intimacies. When a sailor is found to have cholera, Boynton puts Kiddo ashore at the South Sea island village of Hitu-iva and orders her to keep away from the pearl divers while he is gone. Robert Dunn, a seedy American attorney, immediately tries to seduce Kiddo, but she refuses his advances. The next day, as Kiddo bathes in the nude in a lagoon, ex-marine Tom Brian, an upbeat, but conceited owner of a small pearl diving operation, taunts her. Kiddo acts indignant when Tom steals her clothes, but later acknowledges that he is a "good sort." After a servant girl at the village saloon dies from tuberculosis, Kiddo gets her job. When she receives a letter from Boynton telling her that he will return soon, she plans to leave the island, but ignores Dunn's offer to take her to Papeete. Tom, whose motto had been, "The world's my parking space; here today, gone tomorrow," now asks Kiddo to marry him. She reacts with a mixture of tears and laughter and tells Tom her past: she was kicked out of her father's house at age sixteen for staying out late and has since succumbed to men's promises up and down the coast. She spurns Tom's offer, but invites him to stay the night, which he refuses. Four days before Boynton is to return, Kiddo reads that his ship, The Southern Cross , is missing and that the crew is believed to be lost. Kiddo then marries Tom, but three months later, Dunn reports that The Southern Cross , which only ran aground, will soon return to the island. Afraid of Boynton, Kiddo asks Tom to take her back to the States, but he says he cannot leave until the fall. Kiddo joins Tom on his boat, where his diver, Jim Kekela, retrieves an oyster containing a large pearl worth $700. When Jim is attacked by an octopus, Tom rescues him. After The Southern Cross returns, Jim sees Kiddo take the pearl. Kiddo greets Boynton warmly and after telling him that he must not come ashore because there is a warrant out for his arrest for helping her escape Singapore, she gives him the pearl hoping he will leave. Dunn then tells Boynton about Kiddo's marriage. While Tom is away, Boynton enters Kiddo's window and struggles with her, until Jim comes to her rescue and stabs Boynton to death. The next day, at a hearing, Dunn tries to prove that Kiddo invited Boynton to her room and then killed him when Boynton threatened to expose her. Tom returns, but leaves the hearing in disgust when Kiddo admits she gave Boynton the pearl. Jim then confesses and Kiddo is released, but Tom refuses to listen to her pleadings. After Jim's demand to see Tom before being taken away is refused, he breaks away from his guards, and he is shot. Jim makes his way to Tom, who is about to leave, and tells what really happened. When Tom is still skeptical, Jim falsely admits stealing the pearl to sell to Boynton and says that Kiddo went to the ship to retrieve it. Jim then dies, and Tom and Kiddo are reconciled. +

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.