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Brother Rat (1938)

Approved  |   |  Comedy  |  29 October 1938 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 324 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.

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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




Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

29 October 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cadetes do Barulho  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Eddie Albert's film debut. See more »


Followed by Brother Rat and a Baby (1940) 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

Rats Forever
26 August 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Brother Rat, a successful Broadway play about the misadventures of some cadets at Virginia Military Institute, had a two year run on Broadway of 577 performances. In bringing it to Hollywood, I only wish the brothers Warner had gotten George Abbott to come over from Broadway as well as Eddie Albert from the original cast. I think the film would have been far the better for it.

As it is it's not a bad comedy at that. Wayne Morris who Warner Brothers was trying to build up at the time plays the lead, taking over from Frank Albertson on Broadway. But I did a double take when I saw that Ronald Reagan had taken over from Jose Ferrer on Broadway, ten years before Ferrer made his screen debut. Imagine Reagan and Ferrer playing the same role, I never would have dreamed it.

Reagan isn't bad though as the voice of reason of the three cadets, having to contend with Morris's schemes and Albert's lovesickness. In fact they all aren't bad.

On the distaff side Priscilla Lane does well as the object of Morris's affection and this was the film that introduced Ronald Reagan to the woman who could have become First Lady, Jane Wyman.

William Tracy also came over from Broadway playing the ever flustered plebe who is at the beck and call of the three upper classmen. Tracy took over the part on Broadway from Ezra Stone who went on to play Henry Aldrich on radio and film. Tracy steals every scene he's in.

Brother Rat is a funny film, but something tells me that the George Abbott stage production was a whole lot better.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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