7.8/10
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Zulu (1964)

Unrated | | Drama, History, War | 17 June 1964 (USA)
Outnumbered British soldiers do battle with Zulu warriors at Rorke's Drift.

Director:

Writers:

(original screenplay), (original screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »
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A dramatization of the Battle of Isandlwana, where the British Army met its match against the Zulu nation.

Director: Douglas Hickox
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Simon Ward, Denholm Elliott
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ivor Emmanuel ...
Paul Daneman ...
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David Kernan ...
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Peter Gill ...
Tom Gerrard ...
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Storyline

Zululand, South Africa, 1879. The British are fighting the Zulus and one of their columns has just been wiped out at Isandlwana. The Zulus next fix their sights on the small British outpost at Rorke's Drift. At the outpost are 150 British troops under the command of Lieutenants Bromhead and Chard. In the next few days these 150 troops will fight about 4,000 Zulus in one of the most courageous battles in history. Written by grantss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

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 »

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

17 June 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Zulu  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Richard Burton's narration was recorded at a sound studio in Paris, France, on September 21, 1963. See more »

Goofs

At around 25 minutes into the film a British soldier, running in a small squad, trips over a large mound of dirt. See more »

Quotes

Lieutenant John Chard: Well, you've fought your first action.
Lieutenant Gonville Bromhead: Does everyone feel like this afterwards?
Lieutenant John Chard: How do you feel?
Lieutenant Gonville Bromhead: Sick.
Lieutenant John Chard: Well, you have to feel alive to feel sick.
Lieutenant Gonville Bromhead: You asked me, I told you.
[pause]
Lieutenant Gonville Bromhead: There's something else. I feel ashamed. Was that how it was for you? The first time?
Lieutenant John Chard: The first time? You think I could stand this butcher's yard more than once?
Lieutenant Gonville Bromhead: I didn't know.
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The title has fire within its letters, and it flies directly at the screen. Additionally, the title itself doesn't appear on screen until after the opening credits have finished rolling. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Lovejoy: The Peking Gun (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Stamp and Shake
Written by John Barry
Performed by The Routers
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Undisputed Classic
23 August 2001 | by (Isle Of Bute , Scotland) – See all my reviews

It`s shameful no-one makes films like ZULU anymore. In these PC dominated times there are those who may view this film as being racist dealing with a heroic battle between white foreign troops against native black Africans during Victorian times. Nothing could be further from the truth. The zulus are rightly presented as being fearless and disciplined warriors ready to willingly die than show cowardice.

The only other criticism a modern day audience can level at the film is the fact that the battle scenes are slightly ungory compared to the likes of SAVING PRIVATE RYAN and PLATOON. But so what ? How many other films compete with the excitement and tension of scenes like the soldiers fighting off the hordes of zulus in the hospital building ? Would graphic disembowelment and decapitation improve these scenes ? of course not.

I could go on all day as to what`s brilliant about ZULU , but I wont. But I will say that for me the greatest aspect of the film is John Barry`s score. The fact that he never won an oscar for it just goes to show there`s no justice in the world.

Without doubt the greatest British film of the 1960`s , probably the greatest British picture ever , and possibly the greatest film ever. Let`s hope Hollywood never decides to remake it


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