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For the Defense (1930)

 |  Drama  |  19 July 1930 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 258 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 5 critic

William Powell plays William Foster, a slick attorney who stays within the law, but specializes in representing crooks and shady characters. He's adept at keeping them out of jail, winning ... See full summary »



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Cast overview:
Irene Manners
Jack Defoe
William B. Davidson ...
District Attorney Herbert L. Stone
Thomas E. Jackson ...
Harry Walker ...
James Finlayson ...
Charles West ...
Bertram Marburgh ...
Judge Evans


William Powell plays William Foster, a slick attorney who stays within the law, but specializes in representing crooks and shady characters. He's adept at keeping them out of jail, winning acquittals, and having decisions reversed, thus springing criminals out of prison. He is romantically involved with dancer Irene Manners (Kay Francis), who is two-timing him, although she wants to marry him. She kills a man driving while out with her other man, Jack Defoe (Scott Kolk), who takes the blame. Unfortunately, a ring Foster had just given Irene is found at the crime scene. Foster ends up defending Jack, but when the ring is found, he thinks he is protecting Irene, so pleads guilty to jury tampering, which he had done for the first time to save Irene. After his plea, the the prosecuting DA confides that Jack would have gotten off... Written by Becie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

19 July 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Defesa que Humilha  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Director cameo: Director John Cromwell appears as a reporter. See more »


William Foster: [to a client] My son, I'm an old man in this racket.
See more »


References Shoulder Arms (1918) See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent Effort for Powell-Francis Team
4 June 2002 | by (Forestville, Ca) – See all my reviews

In their second of 6 screen-team efforts, William Powell and Kay Francis excel in this courtroom melodrama. Controversial lawyer Powell receives a quasi-marriage proposal from actress girlfriend Francis. "After all these months, don't you think that would be rather silly?" he replies. Francis, disappointed, decides to rendevouz with a boozer pal (Scott Kolk),she has been keeping on the side in case her "Powell affair" fizzled. With Kay at the wheel, Kolk pawing her in a drunken haze -- she hits and kills a roadside bystander. Francis begs Powell to defend Kolk who is taking the rap for her. Kolk gets off the hook and Powell learns about his liason with Francis. I won't give away the ending, but Francis must have been grateful for finally having a role at Paramount that was rather substantial and chock full of emotional complexities. FOR THE DEFENSE was her 10th film at the studio and they seldom built up her parts. This was her 2nd of 5 films with director John Cromwell.

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