She Couldn't Say No (1930 film)

She Couldn't Say No is a 1930 American Pre-Code drama which stars Winnie Lightner, fresh from her success in Gold Diggers of Broadway (1929). It was adapted from a play by Benjamin M. Kaye. An aspiring singer ends up in a love triangle with a gangster and a socialite.

She Couldn't Say No
Theatrical release poster
Directed byLloyd Bacon
Written byBenjamin M. Kaye (play)
Arthur Caesar
Robert Lord
Harvey F. Thew
StarringWinnie Lightner
Chester Morris
Sally Eilers
Johnny Arthur
Music byJoe Burke
CinematographyJames Van Trees
Distributed byWarner Bros.
Release date
  • February 15, 1930 (1930-02-15)
Running time
70 minutes
CountryUnited States


Winnie Harper (Lightner) is a nightclub entertainer. This club is owned by a notorious gangster named Big John (Marshall). Jerry Casey (Morris), a gangster, begins dating Winnie and becomes her manager in an attempt to go straight. Jerry manages to put Winnie in a fancy society nightclub.

Morris, however, falls in love with Iris, a rich customer (Eilers). In order to be able to buy gifts worthy of his new socialite girlfriend, and also to get money for Winnie's upcoming revue, Jerry asks Big John for another job. Jerry tells Winnie about his love for Iris but she disproves and thinks that Iris is not serious about their relationship.

Later on, Jerry gets arrested and Winnie pays his bail, but is broken-hearted when Jerry leaves her to return to Iris. Winnie, with the help of Tommy Blake her pianist (Arthur), lands a job in a revue and attempts to forget Jerry. Nevertheless, when she hears that Jerry is in trouble with his fellow gang members, she goes to try to help him.



All songs were performed by Lightner.

  • "Watching My Dreams Go By", lyrics by Al Dubin, music by Joe Burke
  • "A Darn Fool Woman Like Me", Al Dubin and Joe Burke
  • "Bouncing the Baby Around", Al Dubin and Joe Burke
  • "Ping Pongo"
  • "The Poison Kiss of That Spaniard"

Preservation status

She Couldn't Say No is now considered a lost film, but the soundtrack survives intact on Vitaphone disks.

See also


  1. "Plot synopsis". Allmovie. Retrieved 2008-03-03.

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