59 user 26 critic

King Ralph (1991)

A regular guy from America becomes king of England after a royal wipe-out puts him next in line.


David S. Ward


Emlyn Williams (novel), David S. Ward (screenplay)




Cast overview, first billed only:
John Goodman ... Ralph
Peter O'Toole ... Willingham
John Hurt ... Graves
Camille Coduri ... Miranda
Richard Griffiths ... Phipps
Leslie Phillips ... Gordon
James Villiers ... Hale
Joely Richardson ... Princess Anna
Niall O'Brien Niall O'Brien ... McGuire
Julian Glover ... King Gustav
Judy Parfitt ... Queen Katherine
Ed Stobart Ed Stobart ... Dysentery
Gedren Heller Gedren Heller ... Punk Girl
Rudolph Walker ... King Mulambon
Michael Johnson Michael Johnson ... Hamilton


When an accident obliterates the British royal family and most of its branches, a desperate geneological search discovers the next King: Ralph, a sleazy American lounge singer. Can Ralph measure up to the job, even with the help of loyal aristocrat Willingham? Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A great tragedy has befallen the royal family leaving only one heir to the throne... See more »


Comedy | Romance


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Star Billing: John Goodman (first), Peter O'Toole (second), and Sir John Hurt (third). See more »


In the establishing shot of Buckingham Palace at the beginning of the film, no Royal Standard is seen flying above the palace, which would signify that the monarch is not in residence. Immediately following the establishing shot, it is shown that the monarch is, indeed, in residence and thus, the Royal Standard should be flying. See more »


[Ralph is being measured for a suit]
Sir Cedric Willingham: Just a few quick questions to probe your knowledge of English history...
Ralph Jones: Fine.
Sir Cedric Willingham: When she failed to give him a son, Henry VIII had Anne Boleyn - ?
Ralph Jones: Look into adoption?
Sir Cedric Willingham: Beheaded.
Ralph Jones: Jeez, this is a tough country.
[a tailor approaches with a bolt of fine black material]
Tailor: Would this be to your liking, Your Majesty?
Ralph Jones: You know, I kind of like that.
See more »


Referenced in The Conners: One Flew Over the Conners' Nest (2018) See more »


Duke of Earl
Written by Earl Edwards, Gene Chandler (as Eugene Dixon) and Bernice Williams
Performed by John Goodman
See more »

User Reviews

Good fun
3 September 2006 | by mattrochmanSee all my reviews

This seems to get a panning from film reviewers here, but it actually is a good comedy. The story line is mildly stupid and a replay of the old fish-out-of-water formula, but the British were able to add a fantastic flavour to the film and the comedy is kept in check and doesn't become too outlandishly stupid.

Thumbs up in my view, but it's a little bit date these days. Superb supporting cast and a friendly film: nothing crude and from recollection, no bad language.

Goes to show that it can still be done if you really apply your mind to it!

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Official Sites:

Official site





Release Date:

15 February 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

King Ralph I See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,327,550, 18 February 1991

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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