The Man Who Would Be King (1975)

Genres - Adventure  |   Sub-Genres - British Empire Film, Buddy Film, Costume Adventure  |   Release Date - Dec 18, 1975 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 129 min.  |   Countries - UK  |   MPAA Rating - PG
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The Man Who Would Be King is writer-director John Huston's enjoyably tongue-in-cheek paean to action-adventure movies of the Douglas Fairbanks variety. For the most part, it's good, old-fashioned fun, but it's also an incisive commentary on English imperialism and the quest for imaginary power. Huston first attempted to make Man in the mid-1950s, with Clark Gable and Humphrey Bogart as the leads; over the years, other pairs were considered, including Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas, and Robert Redford and Paul Newman. But it's hard to imagine anyone more appropriate than Michael Caine and Sean Connery for the slyly goofy roles. Both actors had previously played archetypically cool British action heroes: Caine as Harry Palmer in The Ipcress File and other films; Connery as James Bond.