5.4/10
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38 user 37 critic

Ben (1972)

PG | | Horror, Thriller | 23 June 1972 (USA)
A lonely boy befriends Ben, the leader of a violent pack of killer rats.

Director:

Phil Karlson

Writers:

Stephen Gilbert (characters), Gilbert Ralston (as Gilbert A. Ralston)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Lee Montgomery ... Danny Garrison (as Lee Harcourt Montgomery)
Joseph Campanella ... Cliff Kirtland
Arthur O'Connell ... Billy Hatfield
Rosemary Murphy ... Beth Garrison
Meredith Baxter ... Eve Garrison
Kaz Garas ... Joe Greer
Paul Carr ... Kelly
Richard Van Vleet ... Reade
Kenneth Tobey ... Engineer
James Luisi ... Ed
Lee Paul Lee Paul ... Carey
Norman Alden ... Policeman
Scott Garrett Scott Garrett ... Henry Gray
Arlen Stuart Arlen Stuart ... Mrs. Gray
Ric Drasin ... George (as Richard Drasin)
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Storyline

A lonely boy named Danny Garrison befriends Ben, the rat leader of the swarm of rats trained by Willard Stiles. Ben becomes the boy's best friend, protecting him from bullying and keeping his spirits up in the face of a heart condition. However, things gradually take a downward turn as Ben's swarm becomes violent, resulting in several deaths. Written by Johnny P

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Where "WILLARD" ended... BEN begins. And this time, he's not alone! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 June 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ben, la rata asesina See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to a September 1972 Los Angeles Times news item, the rat playing Ben won a PATSY Award which honors animal performers. See more »

Goofs

When Beth and Eve discuss their concern about David, the daughter turns her head towards her mom twice. See more »

Quotes

Danny Garrison: [singing while showing his Ben marionette to the real rat, Ben] Start the day, oh come along now, Ben. Come on out, before I count to ten. If you stay, you will miss all the fun and there's room for everyone.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Cinemacabre TV Trailers (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Ben's Song
Lyrics by Don Black
Music by Walter Scharf
Sung and played on piano and harmonica by Lee Montgomery (uncredited)
Sung by Michael Jackson during the final scene and end credits
See more »

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User Reviews

Where Willard Ended... Is Exactly Where This Series Should Have Ended
14 June 2017 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

Ben (1972)

* 1/2 (out of 4)

As the tagline promised, "Where WILLARD ended... BEN begins." This sequel to the 1971 film takes place moments after the original film ended as the police arrive at the home of Willard and realize the damage done by the rats. Before long the rats, being led by Ben, befriend a young boy (Lee Montgomery) but at the same time they're terrorizing the city as the police try to figure out what to do.

BEN is the perfect example of a film making money and a sequel being rushed into production to try and make some more money. Whereas WILLARD was a rather interesting character study, BEN falls into a rather cheap, money-maker that has very little story, although if you're a fan of rats then there are plenty of them here as well as a lot more attacks.

For me personally, BEN was a major disappointment but I guess you had to go into the film somewhat expecting that. After all, WILLARD featured some great performances, an interesting story and it worked on most levels. Sadly what made that film work is pretty much missing here as we're given a rather generic story and it's one that you the viewer really can't connect with. I'm not even sure kids could connect with the young child here or any of his family members.

Director Phil Karlson at least keeps the film moving at a good pace and for the most part the performances are good. There are several more rat attacks here and for the most part they are mildly entertaining but there's no question that the climax lacks any real suspense and it drags on for way too long. By the time the end credits start we finally get to hear Michael Jackson singing his love song.


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