Sergeant Ryker (1968)

 |  Drama, War  |  1 February 1968 (USA)
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During the Korean War Sergeant Paul Ryker is accused of defecting to Communist China and then returning to his unit as a spy.He's court-martialed and sentenced to death but his attorney believes Ryker's innocent and asks for a new trial.



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Cast overview:
Capt. David Young (archive footage)
Maj. Whitaker (archive footage)
Ann Ryker (archive footage)
Gen. Amos Bailey (archive footage)
Capt. Appleton (archive footage)
Sgt. Max Winkler (archive footage)
Sgt. Paul Ryker (archive footage)
Walter Brooke ...
Col. Arthur Merriam (archive footage)
Francis De Sales ...
President of the Court (archive footage)
Don Marshall ...
Cpl. Jenks (archive footage)
Maj. Kitchener - The Law Officer (archive footage)


During the Korean War Sergeant Paul Ryker is accused of defecting to Communist China and then returning to his unit as a spy.He's court-martialed and sentenced to death but his attorney believes in Ryker's innocence and pleads for a new trial. Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


COMMIE MAJOR...or U.S. SERGEANT? There's a bullet at one end...and a hangman's noose at the other! See more »


Drama | War


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Release Date:

1 February 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Clamor de Justicia  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Originally two episodes of Kraft Suspense Theatre (1963) - "The Case Against Paul Ryker" (Oct, 10 & 17, 1963) See more »


Although Colonel Merriam is an Army officer, his ribbons include the Navy Presidential Unit Citation. While it would not be impossible for him to receive this award, it would be extremely unlikely. In addition, he wears a Second Army patch on his left shoulder. That unit was never stationed overseas. See more »

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User Reviews

Gripping Coutroom Mystery
11 August 2006 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Engaging, riveting tale of captured US army turncoat who has to prove his innocence to avoid the hangman. Paul Ryker dodges friendly fire in a seemingly doomed attempt to convince a military court that he was actually a US spy on a secret mission in Korea. In the vein of classic courtroom dramas, "Sergeant Ryker" is an extremely well crafted mystery, ably guided by an outstanding cast, director Kulik's constant momentum, and effective plot twists and turns.

This film was originally made as a television movie in 1964, and subsequently beefed up for this revision with the presence of many "name" actors, and some action sequences. Dillman, reprising his role, is spot-on as the doubting defence attorney, whose attentions sometimes stray to the personal plight of Ryker's supportive, yet somewhat distant wife, played with aplomb by Vera Miles. Rounding out the frontline is Peter Graves for the prosecution, and Norman Fell and Murray Hamilton in key supporting roles.

Marvin's interpretation of the Paul Ryker character is a balanced depiction of a simple but dedicated man whose normally laid back demeanour is challenged by the desperate circumstances in which he's placed. Marvin switches perfectly from resigned indifference, to impassioned denial of the charges, giving a convincing, often intense performance that is the highlight of this otherwise small-scale drama. It's this performance that should elevate the film to a platform where it occupies a place on the best-ever lists of courtroom dramas.

However, despite its apparent obscurity, "Sergeant Ryker" still remains a taut and compelling examination, like a book that you just can't put down. Highly recommended.

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