King Rat

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Average Rating: 3.7/5

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James Clavell incorporated a few of his own experiences as a British POW in his novel King Rat. Bryan Forbes' film version stars George Segal as the mastermind of all black market operations in a Japanese prison camp. He is called "King Rat" because of his breeding of rodents to serve as food for his emaciated fellow prisoners; the nickname also alludes to Segal's shifty personality. British officer James Fox helps Segal expand his operation to include trading with the Japanese officers. Though on surface level a thoroughly selfish sort, Segal saves the ailing Fox's life by wangling precious antibiotics from the guards.

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George Segal
as Corporal King
Tom Courtenay
as Lt. Robin Grey
James Fox
as Peter Marlowe
Denholm Elliott
as Lt. G.D. Larkin
William Fawcett
as Steinmetz
Leonard Rossiter
as Maj. McCoy
John Standing
as Capt. Daven
Hamilton Dyce
as Chaplain Drinkwater
John Ronane
as Capt. Hawkins
Geoffrey Bayldon
as Squadron Leader Vexley
Roy Dean
as Peterson
John Mills
as Col. Smedley-Taylor
Gerald Sim
as Col. Jones
Alan Webb
as Col. Brant
John Warburton
as Commandant
James Donald
as Dr. Kennedy
Hedley Mattingly
as Dr. Prodhomme
Reg Lye
as Tinkerbell
John Orchard
as Pvt. Gurble
Arthur Malet
as Blakely
Teru Shimada
as Japanese General
Brian Gaffikin
as Prisoner in hut
George Pelling
as Maj. Barry
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Critic Reviews for King Rat

All Critics (4)

Audience Reviews for King Rat

Good POW film that doesn't make you forget the Bridge on the River Kwai or any of the other prison films that William Holden pops up in but it nonetheless is interesting to see the story of a survivor and the choices that he makes with his fellow Brits and the Japanese that keep him locked up.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer


This story of prisoners of war in a WWII japanese prison camp is based on true experiences, and is far more concerned with the harsh realities of surviving the terrible hardships of day to day life than derring do and cunning escape plans. George Segal plays a cynical hustler who seems far more adept at making the best of his predicament, and as such the other prisoners either ally themselves with or despise him. James Fox is excellent as the british officer who befriends him and humour and drama unfolds as the camps differing factions motives and hypocrisies are exposed. Best described as a cross between The Bridge On The River Kwai and Stalag 17, it is not quite their measure, but it's a damn good film in it's own right.

xGary Xx
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

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