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The Man Who Would Be King (1975)

Two British soldiers in India decide to resign from the Army and set themselves up as deities in Kafiristan--a land where no white man has set foot since Alexander.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Doghmi Larbi ...
Ootah
Jack May ...
District Commissioner
Karroom Ben Bouih ...
Kafu Selim
Mohammad Shamsi ...
Babu
...
Ghulam
Paul Antrim ...
Mulvaney
Graham Acres ...
Officer
The Blue Dancers of Goulamine ...
Dancers
Shakira Caine ...
Roxanne
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Storyline

This adaptation of the famous short story by Rudyard Kipling tells the story of Daniel Dravot and Peachy Carnahan, two ex-soldiers in India when it was under British rule. They decide that the country is too small for them, so they head off to Kafiristan in order to become Kings in their own right. Kipling is seen as a character that was there at the beginning, and at the end of this glorious tale. Written by Greg Bole <bole@life.bio.sunysb.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

india | king | ex soldier | rifle | fall | See All (161) »

Taglines:

Adventure in all its glory! See more »

Genres:

Adventure

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

18 December 1975 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Rudyard Kipling's The Man Who Would Be King  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kafiristan is part of modern-day Afghanistan (Nuristan Province) and Pakistan (the city of Chitral). See more »

Goofs

When Peachy and Danny travel with the caravan into the Khyber Pass, all of the camels are Arabian (aka dromedaries), rather than Asian (Bactrian) beasts. This is not an error. Despite their names, both species are present and available in their domestic form in eastern Afghanistan, where the Khyber Pass is, and have been for centuries before the events of the movie take place. See more »

Quotes

Daniel Dravot: [admiring Roxanne, while a worried Peachy looks on] Just looking, Peachy. There's such a thing as admiring beauty for its own sake.
Peachy Carnehan: [sharply] Being only human, one thing leads to another.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in ALF: The Boy Next Door (1988) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
No film is closer to perfect
17 May 1999 | by (Gloucester, England) – See all my reviews

Take the story from a master like Kipling, give it to a director of classics like THE AFRICAN QUEEN, add a superb script that crackles with wit and cast two of the greatest modern day screen actors in roles that fit them like gloves. The result comes as near to the perfect action-adventure film as you will ever find. Kipling's rousing tale of two British soldiers in the days of high Empire keeps a tight hold of the viewer throughout. The twists of the tale are fascinating, the characters mesmerizing, the whole concept is so ingenious and full of potential that with such a team it simply cannot miss! Caine & Connery are superb together, oozing charisma and obviously enjoying themselves greatly as the two British NCOs.It's possible that neither has ever produced work to match what you will see here, it's wonderful to watch. Huston's direction is top drawer and the feeling of claustrophobic Indian market places and dusty railways stations is so strong it's a relief when the two heroes of the story make their ways into the wilderness to conquer a territory and "be kings". "Billie Fish", the stranded Ghurka soldier that the pair encounter high in the mountains produces a fine characterisation by Jaffery . His eye-rolling expressions and comic timing are inch perfect in his performance throughout. Perfect too is Christopher Plummer as Kipling himself. Indeed so convincing is he as this most archetypal Englishman that one is reminded how Huston considered casting to be the most important element of his job - to paraphrase, if you find the right actor for the role, he needs no direction! I can't think of a film that more consistantly proves how right he was!

Through battles, politics, greed and jealousy the two would-be kings gallop untill the final memorable explosive showdown. The last scene is perhaps the most effective and memorable of all. True pathos which tugs strongly at the heartstrings. A fitting end to a marvelous film.


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