A dramatization of the Battle of Isandlwana, where the British Army met its match against the Zulu nation.



(original story and scenario), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

Watch Now

From $3.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

1 win. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Zulu (1964)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

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

Director: Cy Endfield
Stars: Stanley Baker, Jack Hawkins, Ulla Jacobsson
Waterloo I (1970)
Action | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Facing the decline of everything he has worked to obtain, conqueror Napoleon Bonaparte and his army confront the British at the Battle of Waterloo.

Director: Sergey Bondarchuk
Stars: Rod Steiger, Christopher Plummer, Orson Welles
Khartoum (1966)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In the Sudan, in 1884-85, Egyptian forces led by a British general defend Khartoum against an invading Muslim army led by a religious fanatic, the Mahdi.

Directors: Basil Dearden, Eliot Elisofon
Stars: Charlton Heston, Laurence Olivier, Richard Johnson
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A German plot to kidnap Winston Churchill unfolds at the height of World War II.

Director: John Sturges
Stars: Michael Caine, Donald Sutherland, Robert Duvall
Action | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In 1940, the British Royal Air Force fights a desperate battle to prevent the Luftwaffe from gaining air superiority over the English Channel as a prelude to a possible Axis invasion of the UK.

Director: Guy Hamilton
Stars: Michael Caine, Trevor Howard, Harry Andrews
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Operation Market Garden, September 1944: The Allies attempt to capture several strategically important bridges in the Netherlands in the hope of breaking the German lines. However, mismanagement and poor planning result in its failure.

Director: Richard Attenborough
Stars: Sean Connery, Ryan O'Neal, Michael Caine
Dunkirk (1958)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A dramatization of the British Expeditionary Force's 1940 retreat to the beaches of France and the extraordinary seaborne evacuation that saved it from utter destruction by Nazi Germany.

Director: Leslie Norman
Stars: John Mills, Richard Attenborough, Bernard Lee
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A chronicle of events that led to the British involvement in the Crimean War against Russia and which led to the siege of Sevastopol and the fierce Battle of Balaclava on October 25, 1854 ... See full summary »

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Trevor Howard, Vanessa Redgrave, John Gielgud
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A British team is sent to cross occupied Greek territory and destroy the massive German gun emplacement that commands a key sea channel.

Director: J. Lee Thompson
Stars: David Niven, Gregory Peck, Anthony Quinn
Action | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The World War II story of the British Navy's effort to defeat Nazi Germany's most powerful warship.

Director: Lewis Gilbert
Stars: Kenneth More, Dana Wynter, Carl Möhner
El Cid (1961)
Adventure | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The fabled Spanish hero Rodrigo Diaz (a.k.a. El Cid) overcomes a family vendetta and court intrigue to defend Christian Spain against the Moors.

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Charlton Heston, Sophia Loren, Raf Vallone
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Comic caper movie about a plan to steal a gold shipment from the streets of Turin by creating a traffic jam.

Director: Peter Collinson
Stars: Michael Caine, Noël Coward, Benny Hill


Cast overview, first billed only:
Colonel Pulleine / Col. Pulleine
Pte. Williams (as Dai Bradley)
Donald Pickering ...
Ian Yule ...
Peter J. Elliott ...
Brian O'Shaughnessy ...
Maj. Smith R.A. (as Brian O'Shaunnessy)


In 1879 South Africa, the administrators of the British Cape Colony have designs to eliminate the Zulus as a hindrance to their colonial economy. To that end, the British present King Cetshwayo with an impossible ultimatum to provoke a war they are sure they can win easily with their rifles and artillery against native spears. However, that war proves more difficult than the arrogant British commander, Lord Chelmsford, expects as his overburdened army fruitlessly searches for the elusive enemy. However, in the shadow of a hill called Isandlwana, the overconfident British army learns to its sorrow just how badly they have underestimated the tactical skill and might of the Zulu nation. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The sun dawned bloodied...two great armies met face to face...and the earth trembled to the sound of the Zulu death chant! See more »


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| | |



Release Date:

15 May 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amanecer Zulú  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(as Dolby System Noise Reduction - High Fidelity)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The events in this movie take place about two and a half years after the famous "Battle of the Little Big Horn"--aka "Custer's Last Stand"--, which was the most serious defeat incurred by the US Army against an Indian force. Gen. George A. Custer died along with 257 of his soldiers died--over half his command. The Indians kept no records, but estimates are that as many as 300 Indians, out of a force of up to 2500 warriors, were killed. See more »


As the column is crossing the river we see two native bearers carrying an ammunition box, which should be quite heavy. They stumble in the current, dropping the box, which then bounces to the surface and starts to float off. The ammunition box should have sunk. See more »


[first lines]
Sir Henry Bartle Frere: [proofreading aloud the ultimatum he has just drafted] Cetshwayo's Zulu army to disband and the warriors permitted to return to their homes.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: One hundred years ago the British Colony of Natal in Southern Africa was surrounded by a vast and independent Zulu Kingdom.

In 1879, a battle took place that was forever to alter the course of Colonial history: ISANDHLWANA See more »


Featured in The Zulu Wars 1879 (2002) See more »


Men of Harlech
Heard when the troops depart for Zululand
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

One amazing film!
29 October 2002 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

This film must be the most under-rated film of its time. It is a very accurate depiction of the battle of Isandhlwana and the massacre of the British Soldiers. The casting was brilliant, Burt Lancaster and Simon Ward were outstanding in the lead roles. The film following the lives of very different people through a very short timespan was very well done baring in mind the amount of people the film focused on, from a native south african messenger, to an arrogant British General. The film was fair to both armies that fought on that day and deserves to be recognised as a movie epic.

36 of 41 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Romans vs. Zulus andypaul_gill
'Final Solution' shimshamtothemax
why didn't pulleine shoot? billingscaleb
which of the main characters in the movie did exist and which did not? manuel-nunez
New R2 UK release on dvd plasmapulse
Private Williams and Sgt. Williams llscheppink
Discuss Zulu Dawn (1979) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: