Don't let the title or the poster fool you. The Beast of the City is neither a monster movie nor a sappy romance, but one of the bloodiest gangster films made during the Golden Age of Hollywood.
The Beast of the City tells the story of Jim Fitzpatrick (Walter Houston), a police captain who is both a family man and a sworn enemy of organized crime - and not afraid to employ ruthless means to fight it. His nemesis is Sam Belmonte (Jean Hersholt), a sleazy but powerful gangster who has the entire town under his control, and is likewise willing to resort to brutal methods to get what he wants. The press lionizes Belmonte as a colorful figure while mocking Fitzpatrick and the police, and the average citizen is quick to back off their calls for reform when threatened by Belmonte's goons. Meanwhile, Captain Fitzpatrick's younger brother Ed (Wallace Ford) gets into bed - literally - with the wrong crowd when he's seduced by Daisy (Jean Harlow), a moll in Belmonte's employ. When Ed is manipulated into undermining Fitzpatrick's campaign to bring down Belmonte by legal means, Fitzpatrick and his men turn to vigilantism - with VERY bloody results. We're talking a character bodycount that George R. R. Martin would envy.
All images from the website Pre-Code.com.