Cast & Crew
Spencer Williams Jr.
John Fraser, a good boy devoted to his mother, leaves his small town for the big city, where he finds work with an engineering company. Johnny works hard and sends his savings home to his mother until he meets Steve Carson, a fellow draftsman who induces him to play the horses and introduces him to Madelon Kirby, a gold-digging nightclub singer with whom the naive Johnny falls in love. When Madelon demands extravagant gifts, Johnny soon finds himself in debt to the bookmakers and the dishonest Carson convinces him to steal money from his employer to cover his losses. Caught in the act of stealing, Johnny is arrested. To save her son from prison, his mother sells her house to pay back the stolen money. Once freed from jail, Johnny moves into an apartment with his mother but becomes embittered when he is unable to find work. The family survives with the help of Terry, the building janitor, but when Johnny discovers that his mother has been scrubbing floors in order to pay the bills, he again joins up with Carson, who is now working for a big racketeer. Johnny takes over the business when the boss is killed, and his newfound wealth brings Madelon back into his life. They are married, and upon returning from their honeymoon, Madelon refuses to live with her mother-in-law, prompting Mrs. Fraser to move to a nearby boardinghouse. When Johnny buys his mother a new house, Madelon becomes so angry that she plans to steal Johnny's money and run away with Carson. As Madelon opens the safe, Johnny enters, and in the ensuing struggle, Carson shoots Johnny. Carson and Madelon escape in Johnny's car with the police in hot pursuit. As Carson careens out of control and crashes, Terry, back at the apartment, helps Johnny escape the police dragnet. The pair flee but Terry is shot, leaving the mortally wounded Johnny to make his way alone to his mother's house, where he dies in her arms.
Spencer Williams Jr.
Bobby Clark Jr.
The working title of this picture was Wrong Way Street. When the film had its preview in Hollywood on December 10, 1939, it ran 70 minutes, suggesting that considerable footage was cut before its New York screening.