38 user 37 critic

Ben (1972)

PG | | Horror, Thriller | 23 June 1972 (USA)
A lonely boy befriends Ben, the leader of a violent pack of killer rats.


Phil Karlson


Stephen Gilbert (characters), Gilbert Ralston (as Gilbert A. Ralston)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
Lee Montgomery ... Danny Garrison (as Lee Harcourt Montgomery)
Joseph Campanella ... Cliff Kirtland
Arthur O'Connell ... Billy Hatfield
Rosemary Murphy ... Beth Garrison
Meredith Baxter ... Eve Garrison
Kaz Garas ... Joe Greer
Paul Carr ... Kelly
Richard Van Vleet ... Reade
Kenneth Tobey ... Engineer
James Luisi ... Ed
Lee Paul Lee Paul ... Carey
Norman Alden ... Policeman
Scott Garrett Scott Garrett ... Henry Gray
Arlen Stuart Arlen Stuart ... Mrs. Gray
Ric Drasin ... George (as Richard Drasin)


A lonely boy named Danny Garrison befriends Ben, the rat leader of the swarm of rats trained by Willard Stiles. Ben becomes the boy's best friend, protecting him from bullying and keeping his spirits up in the face of a heart condition. However, things gradually take a downward turn as Ben's swarm becomes violent, resulting in several deaths. Written by Johnny P

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Where "WILLARD" ended... BEN begins. And this time, he's not alone! See more »


Horror | Thriller


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »






Release Date:

23 June 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ben, la rata asesina See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Although the on-screen opening credits "introduce" child actor Lee Montgomery, he had previously appeared sixth-billed in the Disney film The Million Dollar Duck (1971) and a handful of episodes for various television shows. See more »


When Beth and Eve discuss their concern about David, the daughter turns her head towards her mom twice. See more »


[last lines]
Danny Garrison: [crying, as Michael Jackson sings "Ben's Song" in the score] You'll get well, Ben, and I'll get well. We'll get well, Ben.
[places Ben on a handkerchief]
Danny Garrison: We'll get well, Ben. No one's gonna hurt one of my friends. No, sir.
[gets out first aid kit, takes a cotton swab and gently rubs Ben's wound]
Danny Garrison: It's okay.
[Ben squeaks]
Danny Garrison: You're the only friend I have. I love you, Ben.
[Michael Jackson sings final verse of "Ben's Song" as credits roll]
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Referenced in TV Land Confidential: Music (2007) See more »


Ben's Song
Lyrics by Don Black
Music by Walter Scharf
Sung and played on piano and harmonica by Lee Montgomery (uncredited)
Sung by Michael Jackson during the final scene and end credits
See more »

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User Reviews

Moderately Entertaining Sequel To Willard.
25 October 2017 | by meddlecoreSee all my reviews

Ben is, apparently, the sequel to Daniel Mann's Willard, from the previous year.

It picks up where the previous story left of.

With a young boy, named Daniel- stricken to his home from illness- having befriended Ben, the leader of the pack of rats- trained by Willard Stiles in the previous film.

The rats are running havoc through town- having already killed 3 people.

And the police and city workers are having no luck tracking the pests down...they are just too intelligent.

Seems they have taken to the sewers, to get around the city more efficiently.

So the authorities pull out all the stops...flamethrowers and all...to rid the city of this menace, once and for all.

Unless Daniel has any say in the matter, that is...

While among the better films that qualify for the animal attack canon. It's still only moderately entertaining. And is probably most notable for it's theme song. Sung by Daniel (J. Lee Montgomery) in the film. But recorded by Michael Jackson for the credits- and released on his album of the same name the same year- for which it received a Golden Globe and Academy Awards Nomination.

The acting from the kid was pretty good though...and it really makes you wonder where the hell they got all those rats from?! Cause there are loads!!! Worth a watch if you are into rats...or hate them and like to be scared...otherwise, it's passable.

5 out of 10.

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