For the Service


1h 4m 1936

Film Details

Release Date
May 6, 1936
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Universal Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Universal Productions, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 4m
Film Length
7 reels

Synopsis

Dying cowboy Johnson, a former frontier scout, informs a trio of scouts, including Buck O'Brien and Ben, that the Bruce Howard gang has taken his stock and burned his ranch. While graves are dug for those who perished in the confrontation with Howard's gang, Buck pursues and shoots the rustlers. Buck reports to his superior, Captain Murphy, that Howard's white men have formed an alliance with renegade Indians by giving them "fire-water" in Hell's Half-Acre. Later Murphy's son George, arrives from the East to carry on the family tradition as a scout. George has not seen Murphy since his mother and sister were massacred in front of him fifteen years earlier. For the pursuit, Buck asks to have George paired with him, and George is nervous when welcomed by a friendly Indian, Chief Big Bear, who dubs him Little Eagle. George falls instantly in love with Penny Carson, the daughter of the local storekeeper. The next day, as George and Buck search for a trail to Hell's Half-Acre, George expresses a general preference for white men over Indians, although Buck explains that whites such as Howard are far worse. When the pair is spotted by Indian guards, Buck shows the naïve George, who is unused to violence, how to trick the Indians and take their rifles without killing them. Once in Hell's Half-Acre, one white man kills another with a broken bottle, and Howard worries about his shortage of men and supplies. That night, Buck and George hear Indians attacking a wagon train, and while Buck helps bravely, George cowers, unable to move. Captain Murphy leads a rescue party and is wounded. Later, Sherman, leader of the wagon train, insists on giving George a gold watch as a token of gratitude. George feels humiliated and only Buck's urging keeps him from revealing the truth. Realizing George and Penny are in love, and that George will never adapt to the West, Buck urges each of them separately to marry and leave the outpost for the East. However, before George can take Buck's advice, two men find the butchered bodies of two scouts, and Murphy orders his son to lead an assault on Hell's Half-Acre to massacre the gang. After observing the drunken nighttime revels of Howard's men, George suggests taking them prisoner, but the attack quickly becomes a shootout that the scouts win. However, George has been hit, and as he dies, he asks Buck to promise that no one will be shot in the back. George is buried with honors as the scouts and Chief Big Bear salute him.

Film Details

Release Date
May 6, 1936
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Universal Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Universal Productions, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 4m
Film Length
7 reels

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

For the Service was the first of three films in which Buck Jones directed as well as starred. The print viewed listed only Jones's name and the title; all other credits are from copyright records and reviews.