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 Posted:   Feb 5, 2011 - 2:48 PM   
 By:   Broughtfan   (Member)

Have started to rent movies* scored by John Barry that I haven't actually seen (though I might have known the music from the soundtrack LP) and last night watched "King Rat." Overall quite a good film with great performances from Bryan Forbes' cadre of British actors (especially James Fox, John Mills and Tom Courtenay) and, surprisingly for me (because I've known him mostly for his comedy work), George Segal in role of "The King." Recommended.

 
 Posted:   May 1, 2013 - 12:41 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

This is a good example of a soundtrack album that does not accurately convey the nature of the score in the film.
I listened to the score first, and imagined there to be many scenes of a romantic nature
(flashbacks, maybe?)

Not so.
JB fashioned a Mancini-esque album that includes lp only arrangements of the excellent main theme
.

ckeck it out!
bruce

 
 
 Posted:   May 1, 2013 - 3:53 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Both Paul Newman and Steve McQueen were offered the chance to star in KING RAT. They both turned it down and the role went to George Segal. Bryan Forbes has said he had to fight the Screen Actors Guild over most of the 15 British Equity members he wanted to cast. The Screen Actors Guild wanted British SAG members, most whom were fairly elderly and not suitable for the film. (There are no women in the film.) Some of the actors had been POWS in the Second World War. Denholm Elliott, while serving in the RAF, had been shot down and taken prisoner by the Nazis.

 
 Posted:   Nov 2, 2013 - 12:47 AM   
 By:   Ron Hardcastle   (Member)

Mr. Marshall: Re your This is a good example of a soundtrack album that does not accurately convey the nature of the score in the film. I listened to the score first, and imagined there to be many scenes of a romantic nature (flashbacks, maybe?). Not so. JB fashioned a Mancini-esque album that includes lp only arrangements of the excellent main theme. ckeck it out!
bruce


This is an all time favorite John Barry soundtrack for me, going back to 1967 when I would play the Mainstream Records LP in my bedroom, along with so many other Barry titles I bought back then. And I had read James Clavell's novel before seeing the film, which was interesting, because James Fox's longing adulation of George Segal as the tough entrepreneurial King was more pronounced in the movie than the book, and the film remained on my DVD wish list for years, and I grabbed it as soon as it was released. As for the soundtrack, my poor LP got a lot of use and I longed for them to finally release it on CD. One day I had gone to the beach and afterwards stopped at a small Tower Records in Santa Monica (Calif), and was startled to find it, and let out a little yelp of elation, which startled the man standing next to me. "I've been waiting for this for YEARS!," I explained, embarrassed about my show of emotion.

To Mr. Marshall, you were probably referring to the 3 different versions of "Just As You Are," which seem out of place for such a grim prisoner-of-war story. But the film works very well, and Barry's music is perfect accompaniment to it.

 
 Posted:   Nov 2, 2013 - 1:27 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

Mr. Marshall: Re your This is a good example of a soundtrack album that does not accurately convey the nature of the score in the film. I listened to the score first, and imagined there to be many scenes of a romantic nature (flashbacks, maybe?). Not so. JB fashioned a Mancini-esque album that includes lp only arrangements of the excellent main theme. ckeck it out!
bruce



To Mr. Marshall, you were probably referring to the 3 different versions of "Just As You Are," which seem out of place for such a grim prisoner-of-war story. But the film works very well, and Barry's music is perfect accompaniment to it.


That is correct , sir!
brm

 
 Posted:   Nov 3, 2013 - 2:42 PM   
 By:   Ron Hardcastle   (Member)

Incidentally, to Broughtfan, re: "...and, surprisingly for me (because I've known him mostly for his comedy work), George Segal in role of "The King."

Segal was just perfect as King, but he did a lot of drama back then, including his role as the young professor hit upon by Elizabeth Taylor in Mike Nichols' film of Edward Albee's "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" And so it was always a bit of a shock to see him and his banjo back then on late night talk shows and realize what a comic he was, and later comedy would seem to be his niche. Of course, for those of us who knew him mainly from his movies in the 60s and 70s, it's always a shock to see him now!

 
 Posted:   Nov 5, 2013 - 8:48 AM   
 By:   RoryR   (Member)

Incidentally, to Broughtfan, re: "...and, surprisingly for me (because I've known him mostly for his comedy work), George Segal in role of "The King."

Segal was just perfect as King, but he did a lot of drama back then, including his role as the young professor hit upon by Elizabeth Taylor in Mike Nichols' film of Edward Albee's "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" And so it was always a bit of a shock to see him and his banjo back then on late night talk shows and realize what a comic he was, and later comedy would seem to be his niche. Of course, for those of us who knew him mainly from his movies in the 60s and 70s, it's always a shock to see him now!


Love George Segal in this, and in THE QUILLER MEMORANDUM. I wish he'd stuck with drama and not made so many of those bad comedies in the '70s, like THE BLACK BIRD. Oh, what a stinker.

 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2013 - 1:44 PM   
 By:   Mr. Marshall   (Member)

One thing I never quite understood:
how was King able to acquire all his booty?
I know he traded with the natives who were employed by the Japanese as guards.
But, what did the prisoners have to trade besides their jewelry (and wouldn't the Japanese have confiscated it)?

thanks!
bruce

 
 Posted:   Nov 7, 2013 - 4:56 PM   
 By:   Ron Hardcastle   (Member)

MM:

Just one example. He won a nice wrist watch playing poker, I think, and he would have used things like that to barter with the guards for other things, such as when he got the medicine to save the arm of his new best friend played by James Fox. Remember how Tom Courtenay bedeviled him about him having anything NEW in his possession, and his naive friend asked him for a light and unthinkingly pointed out he had a lighter in his pocket -- a lighter he wasn't supposed to have, and Courtenay pounced, although Fox managed to save the day, saying he had won it playing poker. I agree that he seemed to have far more than one would think possible, especially since he was giving some of his superior officers a regular "salary" to look the other way. But he knew how to take discards and turn them into cash.

 
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