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King and Country Details


King and Country was adapted by Evan Jones from John Wilson's play Hamp. Misfit World War I British soldier Tom Courtenay, on trial for desertion, is defended by martinet officer Dirk Bogarde. Disgusted by the assignment, Bogarde wearily asks the dullwitted Courtenay the reasons for his actions. Courtenay replies that, after being the sole survivor of a battle and discovering that his wife had been cheating on him while he was serving his country, he didn't see any purpose in going on; thus, he "went for a little walk". Bogarde's dislike of his client melts into sympathy, which in turn leads to temporary indignation over the manner in which the average enlisted man is treated by his aristocratic superiors. Despite his pleas for leniency, Bogarde's client is sentenced to be shot; after all, an example must be made. On the day of the execution, the men on the firing squad are so drunk that they're unable to carry out the sentence. Once more incensed by the "rabble" that he's forced to deal with, Bogarde takes the law into his own hands. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi


Awarded by
British Academy of Film and Television Arts Joseph Losey Best British Film 1964 Nominee
Venice International Film Festival Tom Courtenay Volpi Cup for Best Actor 1964 Winner


Dirk Bogarde
as Capt. Hargreaves
Tom Courtenay
as Private Hamp
Leo McKern
as Capt. O'Sullivan
Barry Foster
as Lieutenant Webb
James Villiers
as Capt. Midgley
Peter Copley
as Colonel
Barry Justice
as Lt. Prescott
Vivian Matalon
as Chaplain
Jeremy Spenser
as Pvt. Sparrow
Jonah Seymour
as Cpl. Hamilton, M.P.
Keith Buckley
as Corporal of the Guard
Derek Partridge
as Captain at Court-Martial
Brian Tipping
as Lieutenant at Court Martial


Joseph Losey
Joseph Losey
Norman Priggen
Evan Jones
Denys Coop
Peter Mullins
Art Director
Roy Ponting
Costume Designer