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You Can't Beat Love

(1937 b 62')

En: 5 Ed: 4

A lawyer is dared into running for mayor by the mayor's daughter and exposes the corruption of the police chief.

Valet Jasper (Herbert Mundin) wakes Jimmy Hughes (Preston Foster), who puts on a tuxedo to dig ditches in order to win a $500 bet with a publisher and a reporter. A trailer to re-elect Mayor Olson arrives, and women give out cake. Jimmy argues with Trudy Olson (Joan Fontaine) and speaks against Olson, promising to make foreman Butch Mehaffey (Paul Hurst) police chief. Jimmy learns that she is the mayor's daughter. Trudy, Dwight Parsons (Bradley Page), and Mayor Olson (Frank M. Thomas) see the news that Jimmy is running for mayor.

A citizen group asks Jimmy to help them get drains. Trudy brings Jimmy a cake, and he asks to see her so that he won't campaign. Jimmy with Trudy tells the reporter to print a retraction; but she dares Jimmy to run, and he never refuses a dare. Jasper got signatures, and Butch promises to get the rest that day. Jimmy sees Trudy and promises her a clean race. Butch gets parking tickets but gets Police Chief Brennan (Berton Churchill) to speed him to city hall with Jimmy's petitions. Parsons calls on Jimmy and offers him $15,000 to handle his legal business, but Jimmy says no. Jimmy learns that Parsons and Brennan have a company that gets corrupt city business, but Jimmy refuses to use it. Brennan tells Parsons he will get Jimmy. Trudy joins Jimmy in riding on an ice wagon. Brennan has Bubbles (Barbara Pepper) invite Jimmy to her room; but she gets Butch instead. When Parsons and Brennan see the photo of Butch with her, they refuse to pay Bubbles. Jimmy learns of it and goes with Butch to Bubbles. Pretty Boy Jones (Harold Huber) and Louis (Paul Guilfoyle) come in to help Bubbles get paid, and Jimmy hires them to offer half their gambling business to Brennan.

Jimmy campaigns against crooked gambling. Mayor Olson tells Brennan to stop the gambling and complains to Trudy about Jimmy's campaign. She goes and overhears Jimmy talking about their gambling profits. At Jimmy's speech Brennan has hecklers, and Butch has strong men. Trudy warns Jimmy and interrupts to say that Jimmy heads the gambling graft. Jimmy says the profits are being returned to the town and plays a recording of Pretty Boy's offer to Brennan and Parsons, and another shows that Olson is against the gambling. Jimmy tells people to vote for Olson, who has Brennan and Parsons arrested. In the final scene Trudy dares Jimmy to kiss her.

This satire of corrupt city politics suggests that democratic elections may sometimes expose such shenanigans.

Copyright © 2002 by Sanderson Beck

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