William Powell is an attorney on the Lower East Side of New York who rises to the top after winning a big case, but his underworld connections pull him back down until he launches a one-man crusade against the corrupt political machine.
It strikes me that these tight, lean early talkies are similar to the kind of storytelling that I enjoy with micro-filmmaking. It allows us to see a character study conveyed with extreme economy and no extraneous details. We learn everything we need to know about this character, and his rise and fall (and rise again), through a minimum of detail that still provides a clear picture and keeps the plot moving. These films could be a model for low-budget filmmakers looking to tell their stories as economically as possible.