July 22nd, 2011: Willard (1971)

Cast and Crew:  Daniel Mann (Director); Bing Crosby (Producer); Ernest Borgnine, Sondra Locke

What It’s About: Willard (Bruce Davison) is a strange young man whose only friends are pet rats.  Tormented by his co-workers and his overbearing mother (Elsa Lanchester), Williard finally goes off the deep end when one of his rats is hurt, and uses his rodent friends to take revenge on his enemies.

Why Watch it Today?: Today is Ratcatcher’s Day, a holiday seemingly celebrated nowhere but connected to the story of the Pied Piper.  Willard is the leader of a pack of rats, and this odd, low-key film is an interesting character study of this strange individual, with a strong performance from Davison and an able supporting cast.  Guaranteed to set anyone with a rat phobia on edge.

Where to Get It:  Available on YouTube: 

The Trailer: 

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