Damaged Lives

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Damaged Lives
Damaged Lives FilmPoster.jpeg
Directed by Edgar G. Ulmer
Produced by J. J. Allen (producer)
Maxwell Cohn (producer)
Nat Cohn (producer)
Written by Edgar G. Ulmer (screenplay)
Donald Davis (dialog)
Based on play Les Avariés
by Eugène Brieux (uncredited)
Starring See below
Cinematography Allen G. Siegler
Edited by Otto Meyer
Distributed by Weldon Pictures Corporation
Columbia Pictures
Release date
22 May 1933
(Toronto, CAN)
19 August 1933
(London, UK)
15 September 1933
(Boston, USA)
Running time
61 minutes
Country Canada, United States
Language English
Budget $18,000[1]

Damaged Lives is a 1933 Canadian/American Pre-Code exploitation film directed by Edgar G. Ulmer.[2] The screenplay is based on the French play Les Avariés (1901) by Eugène Brieux.[3]

The film was shot at General Service Studios, Hollywood for the Canadian Social Health Council and premiered in Toronto.[4]

Damaged Lives was initially released in Canada and a few cities in the United States but was stopped by censors in most American towns. In 1937 the film was re-released as The Shocking Truth with a 29-minute supplementary lecture on VD added onto the end of the film to satisfy censors. Most current video releases do not include this extra material.[5]

Along with the controversial subject matter, the film is also noteworthy for containing one of the earliest filmed nude scenes in a sequence where a group of fun-loving women strip naked and go skinny dipping.

Plot summary[edit]

The film involves an extramarital encounter that leads the wife of the main character into killing herself and her husband.

A boss insists that a young executive, with an important job and a long term girlfriend, go out with him to a party and while out at the party he sleeps with a young wealthy woman, Elise (Charlotte Merriam), and contracts a dangerous venereal disease from her. The girlfriend is so upset that she commits suicide.

Differences from play[edit]


The Roxy Theater in Knoxville, Tennessee, showing the film in 1941 on a "adults only" basis.



Filmed in 1933, this cautionary tale was distributed under the name Weldon Pictures, because Columbia did not want to be associated with the topic of the film.[3] The end title of the Internet Archive print says the film was an Educational Film Exchanges, Inc. release.[6]

Although some scenes in the film were cut by state film censor boards in Maryland and Ohio, it was still very popular in the United States.[1] For example, in Baltimore 65,000 persons, representing approximately 10% of the population, saw the film.[1]


External links[edit]