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Other Men's Women (The Steel Highway)

Other Men's Women (The Steel Highway) (1931)

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Release Date: Jan 17, 1931 Wide

audience

50

liked it
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 105

My Rating

Movie Info

William A. Wellman's triangle melodrama "The Steel Highway" -- a title referring to the film's railroad setting -- was changed to the more suggestive Other Men's Women shortly before it's April 19, 1931 New York premiere. Grant Withers and Regis Toomey played lifelong friends and co-workers in love with the same woman, Mary Astor). She, unfortunately, is also Toomey's wife and the two friends have a blow-out on the job. The train derails and Toomey is blinded for life. When the river floods, the

Unrated,

Drama, Romance, Classics

Cast

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All Critics (2) | Fresh (2) | Rotten (0)

The first half is airy and jaunty, the second is studded with arresting expressionism

September 25, 2009 Full Review Source: CinePassion
CinePassion

... set around the railroad yards and Wellman fills the film with scenes of the men and machines in action.

April 3, 2009 Full Review Source: Parallax View
Parallax View

Audience Reviews for Other Men's Women (The Steel Highway)

Wellman's a good director, and the actors are good enough, but the story is a boring drama with a bit of romance mixed in and a bit of tragedy too, but it doesn't all flow together right. It's okay, but it really could have been better.
November 27, 2010
ajv2688

Super Reviewer

"other men's women" is one of those experimental pieces of works in the early sound movie stage. even it's directed by the maverick who created the legend of james cagney's "public enemy", william a wellman, but inevitably it's raw and primitive, in need of more polishing mellowness since cienma then still had its tiny span to adapt into the sound to emulate popcorn noises in theater. it also features fresh-looking enormously pretty mary astor with innocent wide eyes and lips of cheery blossom. most of all, it has young jimmy cagney before he hit big as the tough bootlegging gangster.

the flick is upon the absurd melodrama of threesome romance among the railroad coal-refilling workers whose code of buddy language is "have a little chew on me"(a sign of exchaning pop-gum), tiptoeing upon the freight train, leading a freewheeling proteriat lifestyle of hard-labour, booze and easy dame after work. somehow the sceneries do have a touch of americanistic realism which could compete with italian neo-realism despite its occasional backfires of overly deliberate melodrama. and the descriptive viewpoint is entirely male-centered, and mainly on the struggle of brotherhood and the illicit passion which is suppressed and un-fulfilled except a brief kiss without further developments. the rest of the story is relentlessly mushy about the manly principle of never crossing your pal's wife even you desire her to death...blah blah blah.

as the notorious grapefruit scene in "public enemy" suggests, director wellman may have an obvious reluctance to deal with women in his movies, when a guy's showed off by a dame, he doesn't know or not willing to cope with that but smash a bundle of grapefruit to her face then takes off since misogynism is primarily due to man's fright to confront the womanly menace. (ha)..there's rarely a place to deepen into a woman in "other men's women" since its two female roles are either disposable waitress(joan bondell) you swoon on monday and ditch by tuesday when you're lonely and miserable or the demure angelic wife (mary astor) who remains passive without actions, the object of desire, something you want greatly but could never have. then a whole long-winding story on brotherhood and the code of manhood.

but un-deniably, the fun of "other men's women" is its naturalistic shooting of proteriat lives within the inland states of america, just like a fragment of past coming into reality which you cannot resist appreciating and life was so simple when you could just climb upon the ladder of a freight train to do your own petite illegal drifting without costing a cent.
July 2, 2009
dietmountaindew
Veronique Kwak

Super Reviewer

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