King Rat

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User Ratings: 1,439
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Movie Info

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

  • Feb 20, 2013
    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 B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 29, 2009
    The book had a lot more to say about issues of class. The movie plot is a minor aspect of the novel. Still, Segal really captures the main character, and this is the most unique of the S. Pacific POW Concentration camp movies.
    Pamela D Super Reviewer
  • Jan 05, 2008
    i was impressed with king rat. forget escape. this is about survival. i've never really watched anything with george segal in before. either that or i haven't noticed him before. he makes me think of a 60's ray liotta. he was the star of the show. john mills did what was needed of him. even rigsby (leonard) from rising damp made a few appearances... one when you first see him being rather noteworthy of his career. he jumped around like a maniac. haha. much better than seance on a wet afternoon which forbes also directed
    Sanity Assassin ! Super Reviewer
  • Sep 06, 2007
    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 X Super Reviewer

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