Boys Town

Synopsis: 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.
Genre: Biography, Drama
Director(s): Norman Taurog
Production: MGM Home Entertainment
  Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
96 min

Well, my lad,

they tell me you want to confess.


That will help the jury.

They convicted you on circumstantial

evidence. Understand?

Yeah, sure.

Public opinion. Clear that up, too.

Justice itself will feel easier.

I'm doing it because I'm scared.

It may help the big rap

when I go through that last door.

You might as well do a real job.

I have a couple of newspapermen here,

and the judge who sentenced you...

Shut that up, will you?

Can't you stop that singing?

Now, now. It's his turn next.

You confess, he sings.


- Bring on your gang.

- Good.

- Can I do anything for you, Dan?

- Yeah, how about a drink?



- Do you want to see Father Flanagan?

- Sure.

I asked for him. He knew me when.

How much time have I got?

Eternity begins in 45 minutes, Dan.

What happens when that door

slams shut behind you?

- A bad minute or two.

- Yeah, I know. After that?

Dan, that's been a mystery

for a million years.

You can't expect to crack that

in a few seconds.

- Would you be afraid to die?

- No.

Why not, if you don't know what happens?

Well, I've made mistakes, Dan,

but I've always been sorry for them.

I try to make up for them.

If you killed a rat,

and it was coming to him...

could you find some way

to be sorry for that?

Dan, life and death should be left

to the Creator of life and death.

Please stay, will you?

How are you, Judge?

This is Lane Wellington. His column fought

for you. Didn't think you were guilty.

Sorry to let you down, pal.

If you'd stuck to your guns,

I'd have kept you alive for years.

I wouldn't try to be funny, if I were you.

This man wants to admit

his debt to the State.

What's that? My debt to the State?

If you'd have done this sooner,

the debt wouldn't be so big.

Is that what this is all about?

You're going to take my life,

because I owe the State something?

When I was a kid, 12 years old,

my mother died.

Did I go on the cuff to the State

for the gutters I slept in? Is that it?

That's just sniveling. The State reached

its arms out for three years...

Yeah, in the reformatory.

When I went in,

copping a loaf of bread was a job.

- When I come out, I could rob a bank!

- Holy cats!

Get this, big shots.

I'm going out that way in a few minutes.

So you're getting the lowdown.

Where was the State when a Ionely,

starving kid cried himself to sleep...

in a flophouse with a bunch of drunks,

tramps, and hoboes?

Is that when this debt started?

The only pals I had a chance at

were the kids in the alley.

I had to be tough to string along.

Just before we got out

of the State's arms...

the reformatory, we made up a gang,

six of us, and pals.

We bet our lives across the board,

and let them ride. Crooks!

Sure! Your mouths pop open at that one.

Greek to you wise guys, ain't it?

One of them turned rat for State's

evidence, and I killed him. But get this.

One friend when I'm 12 years old...

and I don't stand here like this!

Now, go on, get out of here...

you bunch of mush-brained saps! Get out!

Listen, Father. I am sorry for my mistakes.

I am sorry.

12 years old. One friend.

Starving kid. Never had a chance.


Break your mugs.

Steal our food, will you?

Get in your own streets, you mugs!

Here. Tommy, stop it.

Come on, Tommy. Stop it.

Tommy, stop it!


Loafers! Police!

- Good morning, Dave.

- Good morning.

- Look, $80 smashed.

- It's a shame, Dave.

Father Eddie, that place of yours

draws the rats around.

- It's like molasses and flies.

- I suppose it does.

I sleep beside a machine gun,

while you rock-a-bye-baby the 40 thieves.

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Boys Town" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 7 Dec. 2021. <>.

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