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Royal Flash (1975)

PG  |   |  Adventure, Comedy, Romance  |  October 1975 (UK)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 1,391 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 26 critic

Ne'er-do-well Harry Flashman is coerced by Otto von Bismark into impersonating a prince.



(screenplay), (novel), 1 more credit »
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Title: Royal Flash (1975)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Henry Cooper ...
Richard Pearson ...
Dutchy Chamberlain
Alan Howland ...
Dutchy Chamberlain


Captain Harry Flashman of the British army is a cad, a coward, and a lecher who always seems to come off inadvertently heroic. While romancing renowned courtesan Lola Montes, Harry is recruited against his will by Otto von Bismarck to substitute for a lookalike Prussian prince ostensibly in order to help Bismarck enlarge his hold over German duchies. But Bismarck has something more sinister in mind for both Harry and the prince. Written by Jim Beaver <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The greatest swordsman of them all! See more »


PG | See all certifications »





Release Date:

October 1975 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

El cobarde heroico  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Arthur Lowe was cast in this film but was replaced. See more »


At around 48 minutes, as Flashman and Rudi enter Strackenz, one of the cheering crowd of townspeople can be seen to pull out a compact camera and take a photograph of the procession, before resuming cheering. See more »


[first lines]
Harry Flashman: So, the last thing I have to tell you young fellows is this: play up and play the game, honor your queen and country, mind what your masters tell you, say your prayers each night, keep your minds and your bodies clean, take a cold bath each day, and you'll find you can always look the world in the eye like an English gentleman.
[audience members concurs, muttering "Here, here"]
Harry Flashman: Now my lads, I'm just a simple soldier.
[Audience members murmer objections and so does the headmaster]
Harry Flashman: Yes...
See more »


Spun-off from Tom Brown's School Days (1940) See more »


Tannhäuser: Vorspiel
Music by Richard Wagner
Arranged by Ken Thorne
See more »

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User Reviews

Captures the spirit of the most underrated novel series ever.
9 October 1999 | by (Kansas City, Missouri) – See all my reviews

This is a fun flick. I've always liked the humorous fighting style that director Richard Lester brings to his films (The Three Musketeers/Superman I and II/Robin and Marion). This rollicking tale has a dash of that as well as the comic timing of Malcolm McDowell and the grandiose aspirations to rip off "The Prisoner of Zenda" in roundabout fashion.

Royal Flash is an adaptation of the second novel of George MacDonald Frasier's hilarious historical fiction series about the 19th century British officer Harry Flashman, an admitted rogue and coward who always seems to end up smelling like roses. By placing Flashman in settings right out of history and populating his stories with real historical figures Mr Frasier has found the perfect way to inform as he entertains.

The film follows Flashman from a torrid affair with the sadistic Lola Montez to a chance meeting with Otto von Bismark before sending him on a wild journey to a small European province where he's forced to imitate a prince and marry a princess and...

Royal Flash is a good movie and I wish it had reached a wider audience so that I could have seen more of Harry Flashman on the screen. It is one of the weaker novels in the series, but plays well on film. McDowell is a perfect fit and the great Oliver Reed makes a convincing and intimidating Bismark.

8.5 out of 10, but I'm admittedly biased. Seek out the movie, then read the books. Or vice-versa. You won't be disappointed.

30 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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