Men of Boys Town (1941)





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Movie Info

In this sequel to the 1938 boxoffice hit Boys Town, Spencer Tracy repeats his Oscar-winning role of Father Flanagan, with Mickey Rooney likewise reprising his characterization of reformed hoodlum Whitey Marsh. Still operating on the theory that "No boy is bad, if given a chance", Father Flanagan has created Boys Town, a nondemoninational sanctuary for wayward and homeless youngsters in Omaha, Nebraska. Despite the success of his operation insofar as building the character of his charges, the good Father is confronted with ever-mounting debts, and this time not even his old pawnbroker pal Dave Morris (Lee J. Cobb) can come to the rescue. Meanwhile, Whitey Marsh is adopted by the Maitlands, a wealthy couple--a fact that disillusions a sullen, crippled youngster named Ted Martley (Larry Nunn), who'd hoped that the Maitlands would choose him. Upon leaving Boys Town, Whitey tries to pay a visit to his old pal Miles Fenley, who is an inmate in a crooked reform school, but is denied entrance. Driving away from the reformatory, Whitey discovers that a boy from the school, Flips (Darryl Hickman), has stowed away in his car. Whitey agrees not to turn Flip in--a decision he has reason to regret when he is arrested for a robbery committed by Flip. Sent to the same reform school as Miles Fenley, Whitey learns first-hand of the institution's corruption and brutality. He manages to get word to Father Flanagan, who despite his ongoing financial woes takes on the reformatory's unsavory officials and secures a release for Whitey and Flip. But there is still one problem to overcome: Convincing the resentful Ted Martley that the world isn't as bad as he thinks it is. Boasting enough plots for ten films, Men of Boys Town may not have been as good as its predecessor, but it proved to be another box-office bonanza for Spencer Tracy and Mickey Rooney.
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Mickey Rooney
as Whitey Marsh
Spencer Tracy
as Father Flanagan
Lee J. Cobb
as Dave Morris
Lloyd Corrigan
as Roger Gorton
Henry O'Neill
as Mr. Maitland
Anne Revere
as Mrs. Fenely
Bobs Watson
as Pee Wee
Larry Nunn
as Ted Manley
Mary Nash
as Mrs. Maitland
Arthur Hohl
as Guard
Addison Richards
as The Judge
George Lessey
as Bradford Stone
Sidney Miller
as Mo Kahn
Ben Welden
as Superintendent
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Critic Reviews for Men of Boys Town

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Audience Reviews for Men of Boys Town

a sequel 3 yrs in the making does not disappoint maybe 'cos everybody from first pic are back-even Spencer Tracy

Greg Wood
Greg Wood

It's Whitey, Pee Wee, Flip, Mo, Pete and Bohunk. Not quite as sappy as it's predecessor, The Men of Boys Town chronicles the continuing saga of Father Flanagan and his innovative home for troubled youth. Cheesy but sweet. *NOTE: The 'slow motion wrestling' is hilarious!

Randy Tippy
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer


The Men of Boys Town (1941) -- [7.0] -- Mickey Rooney's character is coming of age and Spencer Tracey's Father Flanagan is doing his best to prevent Boys Town from being shut down due to lack of funds. The story is pretty much the same, but still endearing thanks to solid performances from Tracey and Rooney. Things get surprisingly dark in the sequel. One of the new boys is a murderer, and there's some pretty shocking brutality going on in a certain reform school. Oh, and there's a puppy that doesn't fare too well. It gets a little too saccharine towards the end, but I'm a sucker for stories involving children who rise above circumstance, and Flanagan's story is a genuinely moving one. (Tracey's portraying a real man, and the real Boys Town is still operating today.)

Scott Schirmer
Scott Schirmer

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