Boys Town (1938) Movie Script

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.
Read all about it!
Dan Farrow electrocuted!
Read all about it!
Where's His Reverend?
Don't we get a sermon this morning?
Hear ye, my friends.
Scoff your coffee while ye may,
turn up your toes...
call it a day.
I didn't start this place
to give you men a laugh. I really didn't.
I thought I could help you.
- Sorry, Father Flanagan.
- We apologize.
Thanks for the coffee.
We all love you, dominie, every one of us.
Well, you can pass the word
along the road...
that somebody else will be running
the place pretty shortly. I'm leaving.
- But, Father...
- Weasel, you're too smart.
No, I had decided before.
I spent last night, or rather this morning,
with Dan Farrow just before he...
It was too late to do very much for him...
and I guess it's too late
to do very much for you.
I'm afraid you're satisfied with something
to eat and a place to sleep.
Father Flanagan!
- What is it, Skinny?
- They got Jimmy!
The cops got Jimmy!
Please tell them to let him go.
He's my brother.
- Who else have they got?
- They got Tommy and they got Steve.
And they told me to go home.
Yeah, home.
Where's your mother, Skinny?
Come on. We'll see what we can do.
Mr. Morris, do you know
who broke your window?
- Yes, Your Honor.
- Pardon me, but does it really matter?
It was a free-for-all.
Any one of them could have done it.
What do you mean, Father?
Not to obstruct justice, even if I could,
but one boy threw that stone...
did this special damage.
But he didn't mean to do it.
They were all throwing things.
They were all excited.
I'm trying to reduce it to a definite charge.
That's what I was afraid of, Your Honor.
- None of us want to abuse children.
- But we do, nevertheless.
The business of the court is to take care
of the honest citizen.
You. I have a high regard for you, but...
Your Honor, these boys were arrested
this morning.
It's now... It's 3:30.
Has anybody come forward
to say one good word for them?
Father, mother, uncle, sister. Anybody?
Well, you're saying quite a few.
And I'll go on, until you take back
the privilege you granted me.
You heard Mr. Calatieri.
- May I question him?
- Certainly.
- Sit down, Mr. Morris.
- Thank you.
Mr. Calatieri.
Yes, Father?
Tommy, stand up.
- Tommy came in to buy some salami.
- Yes.
I wrap my salami. I put him down.
He say, "Half a dozen eggs."
I turn around to get the eggs,
I come back, where is my salami?
No salami and no Tommy.
But you didn't really see Tommy
steal the salami, did you?
My nice, fresh salami. She no walk away.
And the police found the salami,
and some bread, some other things.
There's no doubt about their being stolen.
There's also no doubt that these boys
should be taken off the streets...
- for their own good.
- And sent to the reformatory.
I'm wondering if you want to do that
to a homeless boy...
- just on circumstantial evidence.
- Well, what do you want me to do?
There's the salami,
and there's Mr. Calatieri.
They can have my salami.
I give it to them, free for present.
But next time, please, not the imported.
- There won't be any next time.
- You should have studied law, Father.
Thank you, Your Honor.
Well, I guess that's...
Unless my good friend wants to identify
the boy who threw the rock.
My window was smashed.
$80 gone to someplace...
But I...
Well, I can't say who did it, positively.
Father Flanagan, what's in your mind?
I'll assume full responsibility for these
boys if you'll place them in my charge.
I'll give them a home,
I'll see to their schooling...
and I'll guarantee their good conduct.
Well, I think you're letting yourself in
for a lot of trouble, but I'll give it a chance.
I release these boys into your custody.
- Thank you, Your Honor.
- And good luck to you.
Thank you. Come on, boys.
You're one of the finest fellows in town.
Why in the name of all that's holy
don't you want to meet nice people?
- Well, Dave, I know you.
- You...
- Father, do you want this?
- What is it, son?
It's a puzzle. You have to jiggle it around
till you get the eyes in the sockets.
Isn't that wonderful.
Thank you very much, Skinny.
I'll have a lot of fun with this.
Dave. Come on, boys.
Could you take the boys to your place
and keep them there a little while?
Sure. What?
I've got an important call to make.
All right, gentlemen, get in.
Oh, boy. A car ride.
Tommy, you better sit up here
in the front seat.
On second thought, you better all sit up
in the front seat. I feel safer.
Hold on, boys. Be careful.
- Dave, I'll see you a little later.
- Could you make it a little sooner?
Do you want me to drive, Mr. Morris?
I gave you permission three years ago
for your refuge.
You thought you could do a lot of good.
Well, I have the right to a mistake or two,
haven't I, Bishop?
And now you want to do something
I think is harder to do...
- certainly more unorthodox.
- That's true.
So I'm going to assign you to a parish.
That's good work, and you're a good man.
- Don't make the decision yet, please.
- Why not?
Why, you'd dream the best part
of your life away, if I'd let you.
But I'm not dreaming.
There's one thing I know, I really know.
And that is, that there's no such thing
in the world as a bad boy. I'm sure of that.
Do you realize the fight
you want to take on?
I know that a mother can take a whip
to the toughest boy in the world...
and he forgets it,
because he knows that she loves him.
I know the fight, and I haven't anything
to do it with, except faith.
with your kind permission,
I would rather have it than the parish.
I can't help you.
We have no arrangement
for outside things like this.
But you have my permission.
How are you beginning?
First, I must rent a house.
No doubt, fumigate and launder it.
Bishop, I shall never forget this.
My blessing.
Hello. I thought you got lost.
No. I had a little chat with my bishop.
I rented a house.
- You're renting houses now?
- Yes.
Of course, I have to pay something down,
so I need a little money.
- A little money? Yeah.
- $100.
What security have you got?
Well, let's see here.
- You want $100 for this?
- Yes.
you can have any one of those
for 65 cents.
And any one of them is better than yours.
And you want $100.
I need the money very badly.
With merchandise like that,
I need it worse than you do.
Got anything else?
Wait a minute.
- That's a 10-cent toy.
- Yeah, you can have a lot of fun with it.
Not a $100 worth, I can't.
Have you got any other security?
Every boy who becomes a good American
citizen is worth $10,000 to the State.
That's a fact. I have good authority for it.
I'm sorry,
but $100 for a bum watch like this...
and a hunk of tin
with a couple of ball bearings...
All right, Dave.
I don't blame you for turning me down.
Thanks just the same.
I'll try someplace else.
Wait a minute.
Couldn't you make a good American
for $50?
All right, there's your $100.
No. You keep the watch.
I'll keep this.
- I'll redeem that some day with interest.
- Yeah.
Here, sign this.
- No, don't sign it.
- Thanks.
Now, you'd better leave
before I change my mind.
I'm not afraid of that, Dave.
Now, I wonder if you could show me
some furniture.
You know, chairs and tables,
and stuff like that.
$100 worth?
I got a little list here that I made out.
All right.
I suppose when your boys grow up,
they'll break bigger and better windows.
I'll be right with you, boys.
Certainly on their good behavior,
aren't they?
Ten chairs.
There's two.
- What does the whole thing come to?
- $220.
I'll give you $150 for the lot.
It's a deal, for $200.
Right. $160. Not a cent more.
Why, it cost me almost that much.
- Make it $190.
- No.
Say, wait a minute. What am I doing?
I'm bargaining with my own money.
I'm losing two ways on the deal.
Here's $50 down payment.
You're offering me $50 of my own money...
as down payment
on my own furniture. No!
Oh, well. All right.
What's the use of my taking the $50?
You'd only come around for it
again tomorrow.
Here's the address.
You mind if I throw you out?
Look, tonight, just before you go to sleep,
you're going to like yourself a lot.
I'll send the furniture over.
Then I'm going to a doctor
and get my head examined.
Come on, boys. We're going home.
- Father Flanagan?
- Yes.
I'm from the Morning Herald.
My editor, Mr. Hargraves, sent me over
to see what you're doing, and...
Well, right now, we're putting up
a little sign that Tommy made.
- We thought we might get some pictures.
- Some pictures?
Hey, fellows, come on.
We're going to get our pictures took.
Bring Father Flanagan's coat.
- All right, sure!
- Oh, boy!
- Hotdog!
- Take it easy, please.
Let's get rid of the rock.
Here, hold the rock. Hold it, don't throw it.
Come right in here close. That's right.
- Put the rock behind your back.
- Big smile now.
- Okay, Jimmy?
- Okay.
- All right, hold it.
- Big smile.
Here he comes!
Hey, wait a minute, fellows.
You know what we planned.
Come on, get in your places.
Come on, we gotta sing. Come on.
Get in line.
Now, altogether...
Silent night!
Holy night!
All is calm
all is bright
Round yon Virgin
Mother and Child
Holy Infant
so tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace
Sleep in heavenly peace
Silent night!
Holy night!
That was a very nice reception, boys.
Thank you very much.
Tommy, would you take that out
in the kitchen?
What is it?
It's good food.
And there's enough there for all of us, too.
- What is it?
- What's in it?
It's good cornmeal mush,
not a tummy ache in a carload.
What else you got in the bag?
Well, I don't know, exactly.
I kind of picked these things up
hither and yon.
Once I got a sleigh.
Shut up.
I thought you said if we were good,
everybody would help us.
Well, I did say that, Skinny. I... But...
Well, maybe it'll take another Christmas
to make friends for us.
Gosh, if we was in a reform school,
it ain't mush for Christmas.
Tommy, are we going to forget
what we're trying to do?
Gee, if I was home,
my old man might wallop me...
but we'd have turkey at Christmas.
Well, Christmas has other meanings,
hasn't it, Bob?
Listen, I can get a turkey easy.
It's a cinch. Everybody's busy.
You should get down on your knees
and ask pardon...
for a thought like that on Christmas Eve.
Jingle bells, Jingle bells
Jingle all the way
Mr. Morris!
- Merry Christmas, Tommy!
- Merry Christmas, Mr. Morris!
Merry Christmas!
Merry Christmas, everybody!
- Turkey and presents for everybody.
- Merry Christmas.
Am I late?
If ever in the world a man was on time.
Now, everybody sing.
Jingle bells, Jingle bells
Jingle all the way
Oh, what fun it is to ride
In a one horse open sleigh
- Thank you, Father.
- Hello, Dave.
Hello, I came over as soon as I could.
What's up?
Now, let's get out of here, Dave.
It's pretty noisy.
Several new boys came in last week.
We're suffocating here.
Now, look, Eddie, just what do you want?
Dave, it's grand to see you.
You certainly have had a wonderful year,
haven't you?
It's been a wonderful year for both of us.
- Did you pay all your bills last month?
- Yes, sure. Most of them.
Skinny, what did I tell you
about biting your nails?
A few little odds and ends,
but I'll get the money for that.
That's what I was afraid of.
No, Dave,
that isn't why I wanted to see you.
No, I want you to take me for a little drive.
I want to show you something.
I'm a busy man.
That's just it, Dave.
Now, you've been working too hard...
with the new store and everything.
A little drive in the country will relax you.
Just what you need.
Just what we both need.
- Bye, Father Flanagan.
- Goodbye, boys.
Now remember what I told you.
Lovely country, isn't it?
Over 200 acres here of rich, fine soil.
You could really live and breathe out here.
- What about it?
- I want to buy it.
Now, look, Dave, I can get it cheap.
Just look at it, Dave.
We could build a real town
for the boys here.
They could have gardens, dormitories,
gymnasiums, classrooms...
Mortgages, and bills, and debts!
Be reasonable.
First you started with five boys,
then it was 20, then it was 50.
With this place,
you'd be looking for 100 boys.
- 500.
- All right, 500. What?
How you going to get the money?
How you going to do it? It's crazy.
Well, maybe you're right.
- What did you say?
- Maybe you're right.
Eddie, don't you feel well?
Maybe it's just a dream
that I'll never see fulfilled.
It seems a shame though,
a lot of boys cheated out of the chance...
to live a nice, decent life out in the open,
where they belong.
Stop it.
- How many acres?
- Over 200.
But you can't handle
as big a thing as this...
without a lot of public support,
I haven't been a bad risk so far, have I?
No, you've paid back everything.
How, I don't know. It isn't that.
But this time you're biting off
more than you can chew.
The newspapers aren't friendly to you,
as it is.
- What do you think they'll say about this?
- I know.
- What do you suggest?
- Hargraves.
He owns the most powerful string
of newspapers in the Middle West.
And he's a tough nut to crack.
You get Hargraves behind you,
and maybe I can handle it.
That's fair, Dave.
All right, here you are. It's a bargain.
Nothing doing. Not till you get Hargraves.
- Thank you.
- You're welcome.
- How do you do, Father?
- Good morning, Mr. Hargraves.
We haven't met before, but I know of you.
Well, that shortens preliminaries.
- Can I help you?
- Do you want to?
If you mean, do I indorse your work,
I don't, I'm sorry to say.
Well, that's all right.
But why do you go out of your way
to hurt me?
There's a feeling in official circles
that you're setting up a tacit criticism...
of things as they are.
There was the same feeling when Newton
suspected the law of gravitation.
There's also a feeling that the sooner
you're discouraged, the better.
For yourself, too.
- No one questions your intentions.
- But I'm paving the lower regions, huh?
Mr. Hargraves, I have 50 boys I've taken
from the slums and the streets.
Right now they're on their way
to becoming confident human beings.
I can do the same with 500.
Boys like that get their chances
in institutions.
You know better than that.
Do I, Father Flanagan?
You have a string of newspapers.
You get reports on human derelicts.
You know the percentage of boys
who survive institutions.
Surely you must know, you above all men.
And you have no right to hinder me
in helping children.
That's pretty stiff, Father.
What little I've done, I've done on nothing.
These boys, thieves some of them,
have gone without clothes...
they've even gone without food,
but not one of them has deserted.
Not one, because they know
what I'm trying to do to help them.
But there are some impossible
young beasts who have to be manacled.
Look at this.
"Eleven-year-old boy convicted.
Guilty of murder in the second degree.
"Jury renders verdict
after 35 minutes deliberation.
"Court will sentence him to life in prison."
A semi-equipped young savage
who's right where he ought to be.
You'll admit that, won't you?
This boy saw his mother
being brutally beaten by a drunken father.
So he took a gun and killed him.
Suppose a man kills because his wife's
been unfaithful: Temporary insanity.
But an 11-year-old: Just a savage.
What do you want of me?
I want your help for homeless boys.
I want you to let the world know
what I'm trying to do.
- No, I'm afraid I can't do that.
- Why not?
Because I don't believe in
what you're trying to do.
The very foundation is false.
"No such thing as a bad boy."
That's just a catch phrase,
sentimental nonsense.
Of course you know you're flying in
the face of the very best of public opinion.
I've seen you do that.
You lead public opinion.
On my convictions.
You want me to throw them
out the window.
A whole lot of good people
feel just as I do...
and we're not un-Christian monsters.
Well, if I'm right, you're pretty close to it.
And so far, I've proven my case.
Mr. Hargraves, when you got into trouble
at 11 or 12 years of age...
you had your mother or you had your
father to put their arms around you...
to talk things over with.
Can you imagine the fright
and the Ioneliness of a boy...
without that love and understanding?
This poor kid...
in prison for life.
I want a home for them,
where they can stay...
and where they can learn.
A town for boys...
governed by boys.
It's worth a shot, isn't it?
Your sincerity is worth a shot.
Father, I'm not going to fight a plan
as unselfish as yours.
But understand, when you fail...
I'll use you for a lesson in horse sense
to the world at large.
Fair enough.
There we are, Dave.
We've got three fine new buildings.
A grand beginning.
Yes, sir. And three fine mortgages
might make a grand finish.
- We've had mortgages before.
- Yes, little ones.
Look at the sweating you've done
to raise nickels, dimes, quarters...
penny contributions.
Now you've got to get dollars,
hundreds, thousands.
Wait a minute, Dave, wait a minute.
This doesn't have to be paid today.
- No, but the day will come.
- Dave.
Now, Eddie, I know.
I know you've always been in debt.
Debts up to your knees.
This time it's up to here.
It might not be as bad as that.
You've got to stop thinking from here,
and think from here a little bit.
Now, Eddie, come on.
Let's look at the figures, averages...
and see what we can set aside.
Father, we'll have to go now
if you're going to make that train.
My goodness, I forgot all about it.
I'll be right with you, Paul.
Now where are you going?
A boy in the State Penitentiary
wants to see me. He's in for life.
Yes, and you're in for life, too.
Thank you.
- Goodbye, Mo.
- Goodbye, Father.
- Have a nice trip, Father.
- Thank you.
- Goodbye, boys.
- Bye, Father.
Pee Wee.
Are you going to be a good boy
while I'm away?
Can I get my candy when you're away?
Freddie, everyday Pee Wee gets
a piece of candy in my office...
if he's a good boy.
Of course, if he isn't a good boy,
then he won't expect it.
Because Pee Wee is an honorable man,
aren't you, Pee Wee?
- Goodbye, boys.
- Bye, Father.
- Nice trip.
- Bye, Father.
- Father Flanagan.
- Warden.
This is Joe Marsh.
He leaves for a federal prison today.
- Hello, Joe.
- Hi.
- I'm letting you use my office, Father.
- I appreciate that.
The guard will let you know
when the time is up.
- Would you like them to stay?
- No, I don't think that's necessary.
See you later.
I'm sorry I couldn't get here sooner,
but I was up to my ears in work...
when your letter came.
Yeah. Nursemaid for a couple of hundred
kids ain't no cinch.
That's right, no cinch.
Look, I didn't want to see you
for none of them phony prayers.
Nothing like that.
I got something else on my mind.
All right, go ahead, shoot.
Get this, I ain't sorry for nothing.
Well, everybody has a right
to look at things in their own way.
You bet. I went my own way,
and I got to be headman, didn't I?
Guys took off their hats
when I told them to...
and there's plenty of them still scared
that maybe I might bust out of this joint.
Well, now, look, you didn't have me come
all the way from Boys Town...
just to lord it over me, did you?
What's on your mind?
I got a kid brother, Whitey.
I've been taking care of him
ever since my old lady died.
Well, he's batty about me.
You know, thinks I'm aces.
Wants to be number one, like me.
But he ain't got what it takes.
He'd turn out to be a five-and-ten mug.
That's where you come in.
- You want me to take him to Boys Town.
- That's it.
The warden's got $280 I had on me.
It's all yours.
He'll tell you where to find Whitey.
He's here in Lincoln.
Well, we're overcrowded,
but I guess I can find room for one more.
He's pretty tough.
You may have to kick him around.
I doubt that.
Sorry, time's up.
- Goodbye, Joe.
- So long.
Wait here, I'll be right down.
- Hello, son.
- Hello, Father.
- Ante two.
- Two?
You heard it.
Gee, I haven't had a hand yet.
I'm sitting in a rummy seat
myself over here.
Keep your hands to yourself, Shorty.
See who it is.
- What's it worth?
- Two.
That's all it's worth.
- Hello, Father.
- Hello, boys.
Hello, sir.
Hi, Doc.
Which one of you is Whitey Marsh?
I've got a message for Whitey.
I'd like to deliver it to him alone.
Hey, wait a minute. I'm out about $1.10.
Come on back here.
There, that's better.
I'm Father Flanagan.
I saw your brother Joe
just a little while ago.
We had a long talk about you, Whitey.
Joe wants you to come with me
to Boys Town.
You've got a swell chance taking me
to that joint.
That's right, a swell chance.
I've got $280 your brother gave me
to take care of you.
I don't care if he gave you a million bucks.
What am I going to do
in a broken-down nursery like Boys Town?
There are a lot of things you could do.
We've got machine shops...
carpenter shops.
We've got printing presses, farming.
I think you might like farming.
It's good for you.
Keep you out in the open,
put hair on your chest.
If you think you'll make a plow jockey
out of me, you got another thing coming.
Now, look, Whitey, in a pinch
I can be tougher than you are...
and I guess maybe this is the pinch.
You're coming with me to Boys Town...
because that's the way
your brother wants it.
And that's the way I want it.
My arm!
My poor arm. You broke my arm.
You better get me to a hospital.
I can't go nowhere.
My arm, poor broken arm.
- Well, let's see. Where does it hurt?
- Take it easy.
- Where is it? Right here?
- Yeah, right there.
Well, I guess we can fix that...
Now, why don't you stop
acting like a kid, Whitey?
- Hello, Father.
- Hello, Mo. Hello, Paul.
- Hello, Father.
- How's everything, Mo?
- It couldn't be better. Everything's jake.
- Good, that's cheerful.
Whitey, this is Mo Kahn,
our second baseman and barber.
Mo, this is Whitey Marsh.
- Hello.
- Hi, eagle-beak.
I'm going to have trouble.
Say, where are you from?
You probably got that big schnoz
sticking it into somebody else's business.
- It's coming.
- Come on, boys. Come on now. Hurry up.
- Say, how far is this place from Omaha?
- About 10 miles.
Ten miles?
What? Are we stuck out at this place
all the time? We never get into town?
Once in a while, a football game,
or baseball game. Some special occasion.
This is Birchwood Drive.
This is the main road leading to the home.
It leads out, too, don't it?
Boys, this is Whitey Marsh.
How are you?
Whitey, I won't introduce you
to all these fellows.
You probably couldn't remember
their names.
Okay by me. Got a lunch counter?
When do we eat?
When the bell rings.
- Hello, Father.
- Hello, Freddie.
Whitey, this is one boy you have to meet.
This is Freddie Fuller,
the Mayor of Boys Town.
- Hello, Whitey.
- Hiya.
- I'll put him in your charge.
- Yes, Father. This way, Whitey.
I don't like a lot of kids looking at me
like I was a freak or something.
Come on, gangway in here.
Come on, open it up, buddy.
Boys, something tells me we're gonna
have to use a lot of patience with Whitey.
But I don't think he's half as tough
as he thinks he is.
Hey, Red.
Take this bag of Whitey's, will you?
Service, huh?
Mammy. Mammy.
Now I'll show you around.
- Do you have to do that?
- That's what we do.
- Hello, Pee Wee.
- Grab them kind of young, don't you?
- Hey, what's your name?
- Go on, beat it, kid.
This is Pee Wee.
He's sort of a mascot around here.
Everybody likes Pee Wee.
Yeah, I know, except I don't like kids
hanging around me.
- What's your name?
- His name's Whitey.
Hello, Whitey.
Here, cut yourself a pair of diapers.
Gee, for me? That's swell.
Over there's the band room
where the fellows practice.
- Got any poker players in the mob?
- No smoking, Whitey.
Just plain, nice boys, huh?
Hey, Whitey, I bet you can't do this.
Yeah, watch this, kid.
Step back, will you? Give me room.
You're wonderful.
What? Are you kidding?
Hey, what's the skyscraper over there?
That's our own branch
of the United States Post Office.
Well, what do you know about that?
Mo, I'm tired.
Listen, Pee Wee, why don't you stay here...
and play mumblety-peg
with your new knife?
I can't carry you.
Mo, come on. I'm tired.
All right. Okay, here we go.
Up. Attaboy.
On a clear day,
you can see Omaha from here.
Yeah? Then what you got?
That's our baseball field over there.
One of our players has just been signed
by the St. Louis Browns.
- I like the Yankees.
- You would.
Hey, how did you get to be Mayor?
Did Flanagan make you Mayor?
No, Father Flanagan didn't.
I was elected by ballot.
We have an election every six months.
- I voted for you, Freddie.
- I know you did, Pee Wee. Thanks.
Just like playing house, huh?
Say, Whitey, you carry me for a while,
will you?
No, I might drop you.
There must be a lot of kids
taking on the lam around here...
with no fences or anything.
No, there never was a wall or a fence
around this place.
Father Flanagan once told us...
that a fence can't keep a fellow in
if he don't want to stay in.
- It's all worked on the honor system.
- Honor system?
A guy'd be a dope to try to do anything
around here with 200 spies...
ready to run and tell teacher on him.
There's no squealing.
Whenever you do anything wrong...
you go to Father Flanagan
and squeal on yourself.
Hey, you wanna know something?
I think you and Father Flanagan...
and this whole joint is screwy.
Now, get this, Whitey.
You think you're a lot different
from the rest of us. You're not.
We've got a lot of tough guys in this place.
Guys that'll take you apart
and put you together again like a watch.
Any time you get an idea like that,
let me know.
You can depend on that, Whitey.
When I get the idea, I'll let you know.
Say, Whitey, Father Flanagan
wants to see you in his office, right away.
I was having such a good time.
Well, see you later, Mayor.
Come in.
All right, Pee Wee, go.
You're cold, Pee Wee.
Getting colder.
Warm. You're red hot, Pee Wee.
You're red hot.
You took the biggest piece, didn't you?
So you've been a good boy,
have you, Pee Wee?
Yes, Father.
Do you know what I think?
I think you've been extra good...
and that makes a great deal of difference
around here when you're extra good.
Then everybody's happy,
aren't they, Pee Wee?
There, now you think that's enough
for a really good boy?
Yes, Father. Thank you.
- Can I sit in the leather chair, Father?
- You bet your life.
I'd love to have you sit in the leather chair.
Go ahead, Pee Wee.
Well, how do you like the place, Whitey?
The more I see of it,
the more I don't like it.
Well, you will like it.
I'm clearing out of here
the first chance I get.
There's a chance for that
any hour of the day or night.
My hunch is, though, you won't take it.
I'll give you odds on that.
If I was a betting man,
I'd take you up on that.
- Is that all?
- That's all.
I like Whitey, Father.
You and I, we like everybody,
don't we, Pee Wee?
- He give me this.
- He gave you that.
Yes, he gived it to me.
Goodbye, Father.
- Hello, Mr. Morris.
- Hello, Pee Wee.
- What you got, the mumps?
- No, candy.
- Say, what's your name?
- This is Mr. Burton, Pee Wee.
Hiya, Burt... Mr. Burton.
He's the chairman
of Father Flanagan's board.
I'm gonna be Mayor someday.
Eddie, there's a little matter of red ink
in the financial statement.
In other words, a deficit.
You have a rather bad situation here.
Yes, we have a boy in trouble.
Something new?
There's always a boy in trouble.
If we don't attend to this,
there'll be a lot of boys in trouble.
Have all that stuff laid out
in the gymnasium, and...
Hey, look.
Hello, kitchen?
Mr. Brown, how soon will lunch be ready?
Well, ring the bell right away,
will you, please?
And give it two or three extra rings. Right.
Hello, Your Honor. Finished your tour?
The bell saved you, didn't it, buddy?
Whitey, you're sitting beside me.
All right, half-pint.
We thank Thee, Lord, for these,
Thy gifts, which we have received...
through Your merciful bounty.
Heavenly Father,
I thank Thee for this food.
Gracious God, may the food that we are
about to receive strengthen our bodies.
What's the matter,
can't you all learn the same words?
Don't have to.
You say the kind of grace you want to say.
At Boys Town everybody worships as they
please, think the way they wanna think.
Sure. Some of us
don't have to go to chapel.
If you're a Catholic, or a Protestant,
you can go right on being one.
- Well, I'm nothing.
- Then you can go right on being nothing.
And nobody cares.
Hey, who's the swell mob
in the back there?
- They're the Commissioners.
- In the gravy, huh?
How'd they get there?
Eenie, meenie, minie, mo?
No, elections. We vote for them.
How cute.
Wonder how they'd like to move over?
Don't reach for that one, fellas,
it's a mile over your heads.
But might I of Jove's nectar
sup, I would not
change for thine
The thirst that from
the soul doth rise
Let him sing. He's doing all right.
Doth ask a drink divine
But might I of Jove's nectar
He's nobody's fool.
Sup, I would
not change for thine
- Here, let me help you, gimpy.
- No, that's all right. I can do it alone.
- Come on...
- Let me alone.
I don't need any help, I tell you.
I can manage.
What's the matter with that lug?
I was only trying to help him.
For a smart guy, you're an awful sap.
- Whitey, gimme a piggyback?
- I ain't helping nobody.
He didn't mean any harm, Tony.
I know that, Father.
That's a good idea.
I do it myself sometimes.
Do you suppose I'll ever have any sense?
Why, sure, Tony, you've got a lot of sense.
Of course, you have to exercise it,
so it'll grow.
People will always be trying to help me.
- I want to do things myself.
- And why not?
I'm counting on you to be
the Mayor of Boys Town.
They want a fellow
who's good at football and baseball.
Somebody they can cheer.
Tony, there's a true story about a man...
who was very ill for a long time.
But he had courage, he got well.
People began to cheer him
for a lot of things.
And he became
the President of the United States.
And I only want to be
the Mayor of Boys Town, someday.
- Good night, Tony.
- Good night, Father.
- Hiya, Tony.
- Hello, Mo.
Hey, Hillbilly, everything's set.
- Kid stuff.
- Good night, Pee Wee.
Here he comes now.
Who's the smart guy
that doused the lights?
A bunch of wise guys in here, huh?
Very funny, boys, very funny.
Come on, White-Wings,
I want to get trimmed.
Okay. Trimmed is right.
Yes, sir. Snappy, says I.
Nice and neat now, my man.
None of that egghead business, get me?
By the way, how did you enjoy your golf?
That joke died last night. Leave it lay.
What shall we discuss, Your Lordship?
This great little metropolis, Boys Town.
- I'm afraid I'm beginning to like it here.
- Goody.
Yes, sir. In fact, I think I might even stay.
- A light trim. How's about it?
- Not bad.
No, sir, not bad at all.
Now, give me a massage.
I thought you were kidding.
I ain't kidding.
The works, baby, the whole works.
Going down.
Okay, boss.
- I'm going to give you...
- I ain't crazy about barbers gabbing.
- All right, close your eyes.
- I got big problems to figure out...
tremendous ones.
So button it up and do your stuff.
Now you just ruminate
about those big plans.
You just grow up to be one of them
big, strong, silent type of men.
You know, things ain't going to stay dead
around this place, not for long.
I'm looking the gang over
to see who's all right for my big plans.
I believe in organization.
And when I start picking my gang...
you'd better hop on the bandwagon,
There's roll call.
- Roll call? Where's that?
- Right back at the dormitory.
- I'll finish you later.
- All right.
Here, buddy, keep the change.
- Morris!
- Here, sir!
- Murphy!
- Here, sir!
Whitey Marsh!
Whitey Marsh.
- Here.
- Here, sir.
Here, sir.
Why, that...
- Mr. Mayor, if it please the court.
- Yes, Father Flanagan.
Whitey, the laws of Boys Town are made
by this body and enforced by this body.
The law doesn't require anything of a boy
that isn't good for all of us.
We have to respect each other
if we're going to like each other...
and living here together as we all do...
we have to like each other
if we're going to get along.
We've been years building up the rules
that we live by...
and if you break them, you have to answer
for it here, in our court.
You cannot escape it in Boys Town.
Mo, there was a fight
in your barber shop this morning.
Yes, sir.
- That was no fight.
- I'll get to you in a minute.
- Well, he came slamming in my shop...
- Who struck the first blow?
The first blow? What, are you kidding?
There was only one blow.
Careful, Whitey. There are extra charges
for contempt of court.
He started riding me
the second he struck here.
Last night in the dormitory, he...
Well, he kept on doing it.
Then this morning he comes into my shop,
and he says:
"Hey, White-Wings,
gimme a haircut, a massage...
"the whole works, baby,
the whole works."
He sent me out
looking like a mammy singer...
and I don't take that from anybody.
That's why I sloughed him.
- Any questions?
- No questions.
- Did you ever milk a cow?
- Did I ever what?
It'll take him a day or so to learn.
For a month you will milk one cow a day,
night and morning.
You mean that I'm gonna have to...
The second month, two cows a day.
That's for contempt of court.
May I suggest that for the fight
they seem equally guilty?
What's the moving picture
for tomorrow night?
- Buck Rides Again.
- Gee whiz.
You will both attend the movie.
Hot dog.
You will stand in front of the hall
with your backs to the screen...
while we watch the show.
Mr. Mayor, before you dismiss them...
come on now, boys, no hard feelings.
Shake hands.
Okay. Shake the hand
that's going to milk 90 cows, kid.
Next case.
Goodnight, gentlemen.
I seen that picture, anyway.
I seen it in Madison.
- No good?
- Terrible.
Buck rides over the hill, shoots a bandit,
rides back over the hill...
scoops up the gal,
they all live happy ever after, nothing to it.
Hey, a pool room.
Come on in, I'll shoot you a game.
No, you can't. That's for the Mayor
and the Commissioners.
Those guys got it pretty soft, ain't they?
Say, I think I'll run for mayor.
Why don't you? I'll vote for you.
- Check.
- And you can vote for yourself, that's two.
Look, you and me, we're supposed
to be pals, you understand?
Me, too, Whitey.
Can he vote, too?
- Honest?
- Yeah, but only once.
You know what I'd make you
if I was elected Mayor?
- What?
- Finance Commissioner.
- What'll I be, Whitey?
- The forgotten man.
- Would I show them an election.
- Yes, siree.
My friends...
- comes the election, we'll all play pool.
- Yippee!
Leave it pretty long
so it'll cover that roller skate.
Hi, Tony. Been scouting around for you.
Look, you ain't kidding yourself about
you got a chance for Mayor, are you?
- Well, I have some friends in school...
- Sure, I know, but use the noodle.
You got to get around
if you're going to be Mayor.
Look, I'll tell you what I'll do.
I'll shove you in as a Commissioner...
then you won't feel like you bit off
more than you could chew.
There's only six Commissioners.
You've promised 10 that I know of.
There's no hard feelings after election.
You're a boss then. They got to take it.
Forget yourself, for the good of the school.
Tell your friends to vote for me.
That's the big deal. I'll treat you right.
You've given me an idea, Whitey.
- I'll think it over.
- Atta-kid.
- Hi, Whitey.
- Mousehead.
Hiya, big shot.
Hey, Freddie.
There ain't no reason
why fellows running...
against each other for election
can't be friends.
You've been Mayor
for about six months now.
Don't be sore if the fellows think it's time
they had a new one.
It's all right with me,
so long as it isn't you.
Rather staggering, no doubt about that.
We've seen them like this before,
haven't we, Dave?
- Well, what?
- There's a way out.
You refused admission last year
to over 800 boys, no room.
That's true, unfortunately.
Did it ever strike you
how many of that 800 offered to pay?
- No. How many?
- At least a third.
And your dormitories so full of boys
who can't pay, you couldn't take those in.
With that kind of school,
you could be financed, comfortably...
by parents who will pay you
to straighten out their boys.
- These figures...
- Figures.
I've made liars out of figures all my life.
If I hadn't, there wouldn't be one stone
on top of another in Boys Town.
Hundreds of boys have been here.
They're out in the world now...
with their heads up. They're making good,
every one of them.
That's serving my Creator and my country.
In 30 days, Father Flanagan, they'll be
obliged to take this place away from you...
unless you change your mind.
No use, Burton.
He'll do what he thinks is right...
if the heavens fall down.
You know figures are the most...
Later on, youngster.
Pee Wee.
This is Boys Town.
All right, Pee Wee, go.
You're as cold as Greenland.
Getting colder.
Now you're getting warm, Pee Wee.
You're burning up, Pee Wee.
You're red hot.
There you are.
Hey, Pee Wee...
did you brush your teeth?
I lost my toothbrush.
You lost your... When, Pee Wee?
A couple of days.
Paul, come in here.
A couple of...
Pee Wee, I'm sorry about that.
Now that's my fault.
Paul, how in the world
could we let Pee Wee go...
for two whole days without a toothbrush?
Pee Wee, you've got to have
some more candy to make up for that.
Paul, I want you to go right down...
to the storeroom,
and get him a brand new toothbrush.
And you ask the Commissioner
of his dormitory how a thing like that...
could ever happen, 'cause he's a good boy,
and we've been neglecting him.
He wouldn't think of coming in here
for candy if he hadn't been a good boy.
Take care of that right away, Paul,
and make a big fuss about it. It's a shame.
I'm awfully sorry this happened.
I'll get to the bottom of it.
Maybe I can find my toothbrush.
You mean, maybe someplace
you haven't looked?
Yes, Father. It might be there.
Pee Wee.
You know, Pee Wee, when you don't
look at me straight in the eyes...
I think maybe you don't like me.
- You said 30 days, Mr. Burton?
- Right.
The only solution you have to offer
is to turn away the boys who cannot pay...
and take in the boys who can.
Every man on your Board of Directors
feels the same way.
I'm afraid we'll have to think
of something else...
because that cannot be done.
Will you leave me alone with the problem?
What are you going to do about it?
Something I do very privately,
say a prayer.
We've been through some
pretty tough spots together, haven't we?
I can't send boys away, not any of them.
Eddie, if you can pray your way out of this,
I'll join the school.
And another thing...
I'm not going to say anything personal
about one of the candidates.
I'll say that only to him.
Don't forget, a lot of us were pretty
rough stuff when we came here, too.
But he's run a campaign
rotten with lies and mud...
and promises that he knew were lies
when he made them!
I'm finished, Father.
Boys, I'm sorry I'm late.
Now, as usual, I take no side.
The election is your business.
All right, Whitey, it's your turn.
- Friends of Boys Town.
- Take off your hat!
Excuse me, Father.
Well, fellows, here we go.
Tomorrow's the big day.
I'm not much for making long speeches,
but it looks to me...
like you've been singing the same old tune
around here all the time.
But believe me...
if you vote right tomorrow,
we'll be swinging that old tune.
Yes, sir, fellows, we'll be swinging it.
And may the best man win.
And now, boys, we'll hear
from our other candidate, Tony Ponessa.
I've been in Boys Town about five years.
I've always hoped
I might be Mayor sometime.
But there's something I want
more than that.
Boys Town must always be
just what Father Flanagan made it.
Must have a purpose, high ideals.
Well, I'm not sure of myself...
but one of the candidates has proven
he's the right man.
So I retire from the race.
I ask my friends to support
Freddie Fuller for re-election.
Of all the double-crossing tricks.
And the day before election!
Go on, the rest of you.
Quiet, boys, quiet.
Now, we have various ways here...
of letting new boys find out
how things are done.
I hope some of you haven't forgotten
how long it took you.
Fellows. Now, listen to me.
Whitey and I have been battling for votes
for ourselves...
and Tony thought of nothing
but Boys Town.
If you want a standing vote right now,
Tony has it, hands down.
You mean "hands up," don't you?
If you want Tony for Mayor,
raise your right hands.
Well, boys, this is very unusual.
And a very great honor, Tony.
You tried to give it away,
and they gave it back to you.
Wait a minute.
We haven't heard
from the other candidate.
And I got plenty to say, too.
I think you and Tony
are a pair of dirty, double-crossing guys.
I told you any time I had the idea
I could take you apart, I'd let you know.
- Yeah?
- Well, I got the idea.
Any time's all right for me.
You know that, don't you?
Well, it looks like this battle is inevitable.
All right, Whitey...
but all fights here are according to Hoyle,
and they're in the ring.
Is that all clear, boys?
Now, you break when I tell you.
The rounds will be two minutes,
one-minute rest.
Half a round, and a good long rest for him.
Go to your corners.
Attaboy, Whitey!
Come on, get up there.
One, two.
One, two...
three, four, five.
One, two, three.
All right, Whitey, you've had enough.
It's in the middle drawer, Pee Wee.
There's Whitey. Where's he going?
Wait for me, Whitey!
Whitey, wait for me. Whitey!
Hey, where you going?
Go on, beat it, will you?
- You going away?
- Sure, I'm blowing the plant.
Go on back, will you, Pee Wee?
Where you belong. That's a good kid.
On your way.
But you and me's pals, ain't we?
Go on and beat it, will you? Go ahead.
I'm your pal, Whitey.
Take me with you.
No. I can't be bothered.
Go on and beat it, will you?
No, I want to go with you!
Go on, beat it.
No, I want to go with you.
Go on back and scram, will you?
Pee Wee!
Speak to me. Pee Wee.
I didn't mean it. Honest, I didn't.
Speak to me, Pee Wee!
Oh, God. I'll do anything,
anything at all, Pee Wee.
I'll ride you piggyback. Go speak to me.
- I'll carry him, Father.
- No, I'll take him.
Pee Wee.
No one is allowed.
...Christ, Our Lord. Amen.
Joe Marsh!
Joe, it's me, Whitey!
Come on, let's get outta here.
Yeah, come on.
Take the car. Wait at Bogg's Tavern.
- But how about you?
- You heard me. Get going.
I'll meet you later.
Sorry, kid. I didn't know it was you.
- Where'd he get you?
- Right here.
- Can you stand up?
- Yeah.
Come on. We gotta get outta here.
Let's go.
It's not bad. You'll be okay. Just lie still.
What are you doing out of school?
I walked out.
You walk back, get me?
You're going straight.
That's why I put you there.
Stay right here till I send for you.
- How'd you escape, Joe?
- Never mind that.
Listen, Whitey, no squawking or squealing.
Don't talk until you're dead sure
I got away.
- All right, Joe.
- Keep that leg quiet.
Forget me, kid. My road's a lot too tough.
- So long.
- Joe, don't go.
Unless there's a concussion,
he'll be all right.
Take a little time, though.
Pee Wee, lad, I'll keep the candy on tap.
- You're wanted on the telephone, Father.
- Thank you, Sister.
- Hello?
- Father Flanagan...
Whitey's hurt.
- He's hurt?
- Yeah.
He's over in a church at 19th and Dodge.
...and I pray for Pee Wee.
It was all my fault, but I didn't mean it.
Honest, I didn't mean it.
Let him live.
Please make him get well.
Are you hurt badly, Whitey?
- Who told you?
- I don't know.
- Do you?
- I ain't talking.
- How's Pee Wee?
- He's all right. He'll pull through.
- Can you walk at all?
- Sure.
Here, put your arm over my shoulder.
Good evening, Father.
Boys, you should be in bed, shouldn't you?
- Whitey's up there, isn't he?
- Yes, he is.
There's trouble, and we know it.
Evening, Father.
Did one of your boys
come home wounded?
Yes, Whitey Marsh.
There was a bank robbery.
The night watchman was killed.
Well, what has that got to do
with Whitey?
I found this cap.
- And who are you?
- Reporter, Morning Dispatch.
The boy's name is in it, Father...
and Boys Town.
I'm afraid there's something to it
this time.
- Where did you find this?
- In the alley near the bank.
There was a trail of blood to a church.
But we were a little late, he'd gone.
Yes, I got him.
- Where is he?
- In the infirmary.
Well, I'll have to take him in.
He's been wounded.
He shouldn't be moved.
- I can't help that.
- Sheriff, I'm the head of a community...
with complete autonomy
and a better record than any in the State.
I'll be responsible for Whitey
until he's able to be questioned.
Well, if the boy's hurt,
I'll take your word, of course.
But I'll have to leave a deputy.
Tim, you stand by.
I'll call later.
The wound is superficial, Father.
Nothing to worry about.
Leave us alone, please, Sister.
All right, Whitey, let's have it.
- What?
- The whole story.
- There ain't nothing to tell.
- Stop that.
They found your cap near the bank...
and they followed your trail to the church,
where I found you.
Why don't you leave me alone?
If I hadn't gotten there first,
you'd be in jail now.
Whitey, I don't believe you're guilty.
You might as well save your breath.
I ain't talking.
It was a bad day when I brought you here.
I've always said there was no such thing
in the world as a bad boy.
I've built my life on it.
You're the only boy in all these years
that hasn't had a heart somewhere...
that I could reach, somehow, sometime.
Whitey, over 200 boys have a home here,
but tomorrow night...
they won't have any home.
And that's up to you, Whitey.
Because I never worked as hard
with any boy in my life. I never had to.
I don't know nothing to tell,
nothing to tell nobody.
Were you mixed up in robbing this bank
and killing that watchman?
I heard some shots. I got scared,
and I ran out to the alley...
and I got plugged.
Then somebody picked me up and took me
to the place where you found me.
- That's all I know.
- You're lying!
You know a lot more than that.
I just got through telling you all I know!
Who picked you up in the alleyway
and carried you?
You're shielding someone.
Are you going to see these boys
turned out into the streets, into alleys...
into reformatories, and worse?
Lose their home?
All right, Whitey, that licks me.
Yes, it was a sad, bad day
when I brought you here.
It was, indeed.
The Sheriff left a deputy to watch you.
I'll turn you over to the police tomorrow.
He doesn't feel like talking tonight.
Well, my friend,
you're sticking to the finish, huh?
Eddie, come on down and see Hargraves.
They're getting out extras, bad ones.
They've got the case tried...
and they've got you hung,
unless you can do something about it.
- Is this it? Is it Boys Town?
- Yes.
- I got here, didn't I?
- Have you come far?
- Are you Father Flanagan?
- Yes.
How far, son?
I hitchhiked, maybe a week, but I got here.
I suppose you're hungry?
Yes, sir.
Eddie, please. We have to get downtown.
- Freddie!
- Yes, Father.
Freddie, see that he has a bath,
and some food, and a place to sleep.
- What's your name, son?
- Charley Haines.
All right, Charley,
tomorrow we'll talk things over.
Thank you, Father.
What's the matter?
I'm going.
It's all over.
What's the matter, kid?
I want to make a confession.
A what? All right, let's have it.
No, you got to get Father Flanagan.
Don't want to talk to nobody else.
Beat it, Mo. I'll wait here.
It's my kid brother.
How'd you find us?
I heard you tell these guys where to go.
What are you doing?
Steering the cops here?
- Nothing like that.
- Lay off that stuff, Rod.
Listen, Joe, you gotta make a break.
I kept my mouth shut, see,
told nobody nothing.
But I'm as good as arrested
for that job down there.
I had to even make a sneak to get here.
- Why, you...
- Paul!
Wait a minute. Let's get this.
That school, with those kids.
They're gonna be closed up tight.
Those kids sent to reform school.
It's taken away from Father Flanagan.
I don't care what they do to me...
but I ain't going to see those kids
tossed out like that.
Joe, I can't do it.
I'm telling you straight.
Get out, take your chances...
because the minute I get back,
I'm gonna spill the beans.
I don't wanna do it, Joe, but I gotta do it.
I gotta.
It's okay with me, kid.
On your way. We'll make a break.
Stay where you are.
We break when we said we would.
Before daylight, and the kid sticks
until we're well on our way.
Get it?
- Here you are. Get your paper!
- Papers!
"Authorities threaten
to close Boys Town."
- Sorry, Father.
- Thanks.
Extra! Boys Town suspect.
Murder at bank robbery! Extra!
Night watchman killed! Extra!
- Hello, Father. I came as soon...
- Mr. Hargraves.
What kind of Christian logic can allow you
to destroy us...
before anybody gets to the bottom
of tonight's business?
That sounds pretty terrible as you put it.
I don't know how much
this boy had to do with it.
I can't get him to talk.
But I have a hunch he's not guilty.
I think you should pull your punches
until somebody...
finds out something, and does it definitely.
Now I really do.
Father, I left this office an hour ago,
because women's clubs, societies...
- everybody was calling me.
- All I'm asking for is a little time.
My friendship for you is definitely known.
If I pull any punches, they'll say I forgot
my duty as a newspaperman for you.
- I can't stand for that.
- All right.
Suppose tomorrow you find out
the whole thing is wrong.
Suppose you find out the boy isn't guilty...
and that my record is clean and clear
of anything like this.
How will you feel then?
You are my friend.
Now tell me, how will you feel?
All I want is a little time
to let the thing clear itself. That's all.
Excuse me.
Yes? Police Headquarters?
Your friend, Whitey Marsh, has escaped.
Two of the other boys went with him.
I believe you made yourself responsible
for him.
That means something like
"accessory after the fact."
Well, I'm afraid that's all.
Sorry, Father. Goodnight.
Hello, Reynolds?
That boy, Whitey Marsh,
escaped from Boys Town.
Two of the other boys went with him.
Put that where the public can see it.
And, Reynolds...
feature an editorial against sentimental
rubbish about juvenile derelicts.
Whitey's at Bogg's Tavern.
Whitey's at Bogg's Tavern.
Whitey's at Bogg's Tavern.
Whitey's at Bogg's Tavern.
Whitey's at Bogg's Tavern.
Whitey's at Bogg's Tavern.
Whitey's at Bogg's Tavern.
- Good night, Dave.
- Good night.
Freddie! Tony!
Sister, what's happened?
The boys, they're all gone.
I don't know, Father.
I do, Father.
They're going to Bogg's Tavern,
after Whitey.
Bogg's Tavern?
Please find Whitey, Father.
All right, Pee Wee. You go to sleep now.
Freddie, Mo, Tony.
Haven't I troubles enough
without all of you going crazy?
We're not crazy, Father.
Whitey's with his pals.
We're going to get them.
You'll do nothing of the kind.
They may be murderers.
There's been a man killed.
They can't kill all of us, Father.
So that's the way you feel about it, huh?
Keep out of it, Father, will you, please?
Bless your hearts.
Turn out those lights. Let's go.
Here they come.
Don't move.
Hey! Wait a minute, fellows,
give me a chance!
Won't somebody give me a chance?
Give me a chance to explain!
Clear a way, there.
We're coming through, Father.
Get him!
Quiet, boys!
Now there's just one thing I want to know.
The rest is for the police.
Wait a minute. Don't hand the kid over.
Hey, Whitey, come here and tell him.
Let him go.
Come on, Whitey, spill everything.
I couldn't tell you nothing before.
I didn't have no part in robbing the bank.
I couldn't tell you,
because I couldn't give my brother up.
I didn't come here
to make a sneak with them.
I came here to tell Joe that I wasn't going
to see Boys Town smashed.
That's what I came here for.
I told him I wasn't going to give him up,
Father. That's all.
I told him I was going straight back to you
and tell the truth.
But these other two guys, they held me
here. They wouldn't let me go.
That's the truth about tonight.
I've been good and rotten at Boys Town,
but that's the truth about tonight, Father.
I couldn't squeal on my brother.
Eddie, shut your eyes.
Now open them again.
And this hand is paralyzed
from signing for registered letters.
And that gorgeous color, black.
You win.
What would it cost to build a dormitory
for 500 boys?
One quarter of a million dollars.
Come on, sit.
Boys, I have a startling thing
to say to you.
In our midst is a lad
who has refused to act as an official here.
Now that is reprehensible.
He is notoriously shy, a shrinking violet.
no excuse is good enough
for refusing duty when Boys Town calls.
The present Mayor, Tony Ponessa...
and the rest of the candidates
agree with me.
No boy can sidestep the call of duty.
I ask for a standing vote, acclamation.
I nominate Whitey Marsh.
My pal, Whitey.
I wished I could think of something to say.
And if I could think of something...
I wished I could say it.
I'm going to try to make...
I mean...
I'm going to try to help to make...
I mean...
I'm going to try to help...
to keep Boys Town the kind of place...
What a guy you picked to be Mayor.
There is no bad boy.