7.6/10
1,520
24 user 15 critic

Il deserto dei tartari (1976)

Lieutenant Giovanni Drogo is assigned to the old Bastiani border fortress where he expects an imminent attack by nomadic fearsome Tartars.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (story) (as Andre G. Brunelin) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

6 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A young girl from the provinces, comes to Paris with one goal: to become a part of the rich bourgeoisie. To achieve this she will use her unique beauty and charm.

Director: Mauro Bolognini
Stars: Isabelle Huppert, Gian Maria Volontè, Bruno Ganz
The Conductor (1980)
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A violinist in a provincial Polish orchestra, whose husband is the director of the ensemble, on a visit to the US ties up with the world- renowned symphony conductor. As it turns out he was... See full summary »

Director: Andrzej Wajda
Stars: John Gielgud, Krystyna Janda, Andrzej Seweryn
Bell' Antonio (1960)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Women love handsome Antonio because they think of him as the perfect lover. But he has problems to fullfill this ideal and Barbara only notices his failures when they are married. When the ... See full summary »

Director: Mauro Bolognini
Stars: Marcello Mastroianni, Claudia Cardinale, Pierre Brasseur
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

With 'little captain' Cambrai raising serious doubts about the reality of the so-called "super spy", Colonel Toulouse kidnaps Christine and forces Francois to play again the character of "... See full summary »

Director: Yves Robert
Stars: Pierre Richard, Jean Carmet, Jean Rochefort
Panny z Wilka (1979)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Set in the late '20s. A thirtyish young man, who heads a small factory, faints at the funeral of a close friend. He decides to go home to his aunt and uncle for a while, but gets involved ... See full summary »

Director: Andrzej Wajda
Stars: Daniel Olbrychski, Anna Seniuk, Maja Komorowska
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A disgraced boxer gradually forms an unlikely friendship with an HIV positive patient he is tasked with monitoring at a military-run sanitarium in 1980s Cuba.

Director: Pavel Giroud
Stars: Camila Arteche, Armando Miguel Gómez, Broselianda Hernández
Volpone (1941)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Volpone, an elderly Venetian, connives with his money-crazed servant to convince his greedy friends that he is dying, knowing that each will try to curry favor with him in order to be named... See full summary »

Directors: Maurice Tourneur, Jacques de Baroncelli
Stars: Harry Baur, Louis Jouvet, Charles Dullin
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The Prince of Homburg, disobeys orders and leads a cavalry charge in battle against the Swedes, which leads to victory. He is court martialled however for disobeying orders and sentenced to... See full summary »

Director: Marco Bellocchio
Stars: Andrea Di Stefano, Barbora Bobulova, Toni Bertorelli
About Us (2016)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Diego, a hopeless romantic desperately trying to salvage his relationship with long time girlfriend Sofía, plans a beach getaway to propose and clear the air. A 'chance' encounter with ... See full summary »

Director: Hernan Jimenez
Stars: Hernan Jimenez, Noelia Castaño, Marina Glezer
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Life in a small Mexican village where joy and misery, hope and pain, passion and guilt, love and decay, life and death are mixed in the peasants life and two French citizens who end up stranded in there, during a typhoid epidemic.

Directors: Yves Allégret, Rafael E. Portas
Stars: Michèle Morgan, Gérard Philipe, Víctor Manuel Mendoza
Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

When a small town begins losing its citizenry in a series of grisly murders, out-of-town police inspector Jean Lavardin (Jean Poiret) is sent to investigate. Could the killers be a bullied ... See full summary »

Director: Claude Chabrol
Stars: Jean Poiret, Stéphane Audran, Michel Bouquet
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In a college, three friends form a secret society. Their objective - going to America. A night, after one of their secret meetings, one of them see a man coming out from a wall. Then the ... See full summary »

Director: Christian-Jaque
Stars: Erich von Stroheim, Michel Simon, Armand Bernard
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Major Matis
...
Lieutenant Simeon
...
...
Marshal Tronk
...
Colonel Nathanson
...
...
...
Captain Ortiz
Shaban Golchin Honaz ...
Private Lazare
Giuseppe Pambieri ...
Lieutenant Rathenau
Bryan Rostron ...
Von Armin
Kamran Nozad ...
Von Sern
Manfred Freyberger ...
Caporal Montagne
Edit

Storyline

As his first assignment, lieutenant Drogo is sent to an isolated fortress on the borders of a desert and of a range of high mountains. The mission of the garrison is to prevent a possible incursion by the fearsome Tartars, coming from beyond the desert. Some fellow officers are eagerly awaiting an attack; some no longer want to believe in it; others take advantage of the vague threat to further their career. All of them are sacrificing everything -- health, youth, friends, family -- for a distant military ideal: leading the defence against the onslaught of the enemy. But in the vast emptiness surrounding the fortress, nobody has ever sighted the Tartars... Written by Eduardo Casais <casaise@acm.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

29 October 1976 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

The Desert of the Tartars  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In West Germany and other countries the film was released under titles which mean translated back "The Desert of the Tatars". Obviously the editors in these countries missed that the original title does not refer to the actual Tatarian people but to the ancient Greek-Roman mythological "Tartars" (from the ancient Greek word "tartaros"). So "Tartars" in this context is not an outdated spelling of "Tatars", but an intended metaphor referring to the historical idea, that there are a people "coming from hell". See more »

Quotes

Drogo: I was sent here by mistake.
Le médecin-major Rovin: Here or elsewhere, we're all somewhere by mistake.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Great movie, falls short of the book.
4 June 2006 | by (Scottsdale, Arizona) – See all my reviews

Excellent, haunting movie, with great actors, but it falls short of the book. This I suspect often happens when reading a book before seeing the film. The book, the Desert of the Tartars by Dino Buzzati is an allegory for a man life and destiny. A man's hope to greatness, to glory, to accomplish great deeds. But as time passes, greatness is never attained, glory never achieved. Most of us us settle down in our routine. Drogo full of youth and enthusiasm set up for Fort Bastiano, the fortress protecting the border of his country. With the passing of time the precise, monotonous routine in the fortress becomes his life. He returns to the city and to his fiancé, but the city life does not please him. This part of the book is never shown in the movie. He returns to the fortress with hope of greatness if the Tartars ever attack and the star of glory to defend his country will shine upon him. Time inexorably goes by. Rumors of sights of Tartars prowling in the desert below are just rumors. Drogo is, we are getting older. His health starts to fail. But there is still hope in his hearth that the enemy may come. Then suddenly the enemy comes. The Tartars are invading, the desert under Fort Bastiano is full of them, the war has started, and while Drogo is carried away a young inexperienced officer coming from the city will have the honor and the glory of defending his country. Drogo's carriage is taking him to the city below where the greatest of all Enemies is awaiting for him.


20 of 24 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page