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Boys Town (1938)

Passed | | Biography, Drama | 9 September 1938 (USA)
Against all odds Father Flanagan starts "Boys' Town" after hearing a convict's story. Whitey Marsh comes there. He runs away but, hungry, returns. He runs away again but, when friend Pee ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Dave Morris
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Gene Reynolds ...
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Joe Marsh
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The Judge
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The Bishop
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John Hargraves
Bobs Watson ...
Pee Wee
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Jimmy Butler ...
...
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Storyline

Against all odds Father Flanagan starts "Boys' Town" after hearing a convict's story. Whitey Marsh comes there. He runs away but, hungry, returns. He runs away again but, when friend Pee Wee is hit by a car, returns. He runs away and joins his brother's gang. Flanagan and the boys capture the crooks and the reward saves the town. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BOYS' TOWN IS Real! (original print ad - mostly caps) See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

9 September 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Boys' Town  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Actor Don 'Red' Barry was spotted at a UCLA game with a Texas All-Star team. Mickey Rooney attended the game with John Wayne. Even though his team lost 21-14, Barry impressed the two actors, who offered to open doors for him if he wanted a film career. Rooney got him a job on this film, but Barry kept blowing the scene with Spencer Tracy' he had been assigned and was replaced. See more »

Goofs

While the boys are praying out front for the injured Pee Wee, Whitey goes behind them and grabs a branch of a tree with no leaves. When he turns around, the branch now is covered with leaves. See more »

Quotes

Father Edward J. Flanagan: There is no such thing as a bad boy.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Triple Cross (1966) See more »

Soundtracks

Ave Maria, Op.52 No.6
(1825) (uncredited)
Composed by Franz Schubert
Sung offscreen at a vigil for Pee Wee
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An Old-Fashioned Feel-Good Film
11 March 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a pretty famous movie, one of those old-fashioned feel-good films that bring a tear or two to the eye of the sensitive individual.

It's very dated, yes, but part of that "dated" means mostly nice kids, not brats and more nice role models, instead of extremely-flawed heroes. It seems, as film fans, we normally got one of the extremes thrown at us: overly good or overly bad. This is overly good.....but I'm fine with that.

Mickey Rooney really livens the film up with his appearance. He and most of the characters represent an America that is long gone, people and ideas that are way too "corny" for today's audience. Sometimes it's sappy but sometimes it's refreshing to see, too.

The "bad" kids in this film seem pretty nice and tame to today's bad kids, believe me. "There are no bad boys," as Father Flanagan put it, and one would wonder if that still applied today. Flanagan is nicely portrayed by Spencer Tracy. The priest is shown to be one who had a real heart for wayward boys.

Spencer and Rooney are the obvious stars of this sentimental story but little "Pee Wee," played by Bobs Watson, is the most endearing character in the movie.

Corny but a remembrance of a much more innocent America.


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