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Willard and Ben — Region B

Guest Reviewer Lee Broughton is back, with a rodent roundup of horror, or more accurately, psychological suspense interrupted by a few salacious slayings. What would Mickey say?

The brief synopses of Daniel Mann’s Willard and Phil Karlson’s Ben that appeared in the horror movie books and magazines that kids in the UK loved to pore over during the late 1970s always gave the impression that this pair of killer rat films were hardcore horror shows.

In truth, the actual horror content of both films is relatively mild and infrequent. In spite of this, Willard and Ben still tend to be discussed in terms of their relation to the often more extreme movies that appeared in the “animals attack” cycle of horror films that flourished during the 1970s.

That particular subgenre represents something of a niche interest area that is governed by a pretty tight set of boundaries. The

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