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Zulu (1964)

Unrated  |   |  Drama, History, War  |  17 June 1964 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 27,810 users  
Reviews: 230 user | 46 critic

Outnumbered British soldiers do battle with Zulu warriors at Rorke's Drift.



(original screenplay), (original screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
James Booth ...
Colour - Sergeant Bourne
Ivor Emmanuel ...
Paul Daneman ...
Glynn Edwards ...
Neil McCarthy ...
David Kernan ...
Gary Bond ...
Peter Gill ...
Tom Gerrard ...
Patrick Magee ...


Two Lieutenants, Chard of Engineers and Bromhead find that their 140 man contingent in Natal has been isolated by the destruction of the main British Army column and that 4,000 Zulu warriors will descend on them in hours. Each has a different military background in tactics and they are immediatly in conflict on how to prepare for the attack. Nearly a third of the men are in the infirmary, as the welsh company tries to somehow survive with no help in sight. Based on a true story.

Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

british | zulu | warrior | battle | army | See All (184) »


These are the days and nights of fury and honor and courage and cowardice that an entire century of empire-making and film-making can never surpass! See more »


Drama | History | War


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

17 June 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Zulu  »

Box Office


$3,500,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(35 mm magnetic prints)| (70 mm prints)| (35 mm optical prints)



Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In real life, Lt. Bromhead, played by Michael Caine as an arrogant "upper class twit", was extremely deaf. It was much more for this reason - rather than the few months' precedence in gaining his commission which Chard (Stanley Baker) claims in the movie - that Bromhead agreed to relinquish command. Chard's precedence, historically, was closer to three years than to the much more dramatic matter of months. See more »


(at around 25 mins) In the background a British soldier extra, running in a small squad, trips over a large mound of dirt. See more »


Commissary Dalton: Careful! Pop that chap somebody! Good fellow, good fellow!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: JANUARY 23rd 1879 See more »


Men of Harlech
Performed by Army Soldiers
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Courage, Honor, Humanity .... War
27 April 1999 | by (oregon) – See all my reviews

There can be no "War Movie" which is not at the same time an "Anti-war Movie". The nearly unique aspect of this movie is that it depicts that rare event in human conflict; a battle in which both sides may be said to have won. And both sides lost, of course. Lives, hopes, aspirations. Incredible performances by Stanley Baker, a very YOUNG Michael Caine. Jack Hawkins plays a credible drunken minister, and Nigel Greene delivers the eternally memorable line; when asked by a frightened soldier "why us?" Color Sergeant Bourne implacably replies "Because we're here, lad. Because we're here." It's as impossible to ignore the fine, sensitive scripting as the surprisingly lucid depiction of The Battle of Roark's Drift. Historical inaccuracies are in petty details only; the sense of simultaneous exaltation and shame that a soldier feels after surviving his first battle has never been more accurately portrayed. Where else can you watch the making of heroes from such obviously human material? Stanley Baker's determination to make this film has earned him a place in theater history.

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