Thursday, November 17, 2005

KING RAT

George Segal King Rat Movie Directed by Bryan Forbes
Starring George Segal
Reviewed by Byron Merritt

THUMBS UP!

THUMBS UP FILM REVIEW RATING!

What happens when a group of WW II soldiers are confined to the harsh island climate of Changi in Singapore? What can they do to survive this nearly death-like existence? Limited food. No medical supplies. Unbearable heat. Welcome to hell...for some. For others, though, this might be something of an opportunity.

Corporal King (
George Segal's best role) has found his niche in this extremely un-paradise like location. He scams guards and Army officers alike, making his life more comfortable than those around him. But he also has compassion for some, and builds trust amongst them (even if they seriously outrank him).

But what will happen when the war ends and the divisiveness of officer and grunt reemerge? How will those who've suffered greater loss than King Rat view this lowly Corporal?

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In one of James Clavell's best novels, KING RAT comes scurrying off the screen, rubbing its moral messages uncomfortably against the viewer. Should we like or dislike The King for what he does? Are the officers any better (they've been stealing food, after all)? Do multiple wrongs make a right? What IS right in a horrendous situation like this?

Unlike other war films of the era (1965), KING RAT explores the methods of men in squalid situations during war time. No explosions. No bullets whizzing by. Just soldiers dealing with the possibility of death and what each does in order to survive.

Click here for the King Rat movie trailer!

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