Brother Rat (1938)

Approved  |   |  Comedy  |  29 October 1938 (USA)
Your rating:
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 325 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 3 critic

Story of three buddies at the Virginia Military Institute. Cadet Bing Edwards is secretly married and soon to be a father.



(screen play), (screen play), 2 more credits »
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Three comrades graduate from Viriginia Military Institute. Bing has a chance to return to VMI as a football coach.

Director: Ray Enright
Stars: Priscilla Lane, Wayne Morris, Jane Bryan


Complete credited cast:
Johnnie Davis ...
A. Furman Towsend, Jr.
Henry O'Neill ...
Colonel Ramm
Gordon Oliver ...
Capt 'Lacedrawers' Rogers
Larry Williams ...
William Tracy ...
Misto Bottome (as William Tracey)
Jessie Busley ...
Olin Howland ...
Louise Beavers ...
Isabel Withers ...


Story of three buddies at the Virginia Military Institute. Cadet Bing Edwards is secretly married and soon to be a father.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

29 October 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cadetes do Barulho  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


(Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


After this picture was completed, Ronald Reagan was made an honorary "Brother Rat" at Virginia Military Institute. See more »


Version of About Face (1952) See more »


You Go to My Head
(1938) (uncredited)
Music by J. Fred Coots
Played when Billy first tries to get rid of Dan and Claire
Also played when Billy and Joyce are finally alone
See more »

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User Reviews

VMI Does Comedy Central
20 March 2009 | by (Claremont,USA) – See all my reviews

Military schools are not exactly known for madcap antics. Here there's a great deal of fun and delight in breaking the many rules in whirlwind fashion. I suspect those shenanigans came across much funnier in 1938 than they do now. The comedy antics revolve around Wayne Morris's cadet Randolph. The trouble is that Morris and/or director Keighley seem to think that there's something automatically funny about being loud and obnoxious, such that one particularly lengthy scene is almost exhausting in pretended hilarity. William Tracy's sadsack new cadet is funnier, but then Tracy is a comedian by nature.

Unfortunately, this is not a movie that takes advantage of Ronald Reagan's natural charm and easy smile. His cadet Crawford is something of a sober-sides and is clearly a secondary role to Morris. Actually, it's Jane Wyman who I think comes across best. Her Claire Adams may be a plain-jane bookworm, but when she takes off her glasses the screen really does light up— no wonder Reagan married her. On the other hand, Eddie Albert is really good at looking confused or perplexed. The trouble is that his dour cadet appears to be in a more serious movie than the one here. I expect one reason the film has lost impact is a shift in public mores over a 70-year period. I doubt that audiences find the various boy-girl situations as scandalously funny now as they did then. Anyway, regardless of comedic skills, the real-life Wayne Morris was a distinguished military man and authentic war hero, making his role here rather ironical. Too bad that today he's almost totally forgotten.

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