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Quest for Fire (1981)

La guerre du feu (original title)
This story takes place in prehistoric time when three tribesmen search for a new fire source.


(screenplay) (as Gerard Brach), (based on the novel by)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Gaw (as Nameer El-Kadi)
Rouka - The Ulam Tribe
Naseer El-Kadi ...
Nam - The Ulam Tribe
Franck-Olivier Bonnet ...
Aghoo - The Ulam Tribe (as Frank Olivier Bonnet)
Jean-Michel Kindt ...
Lakar - The Ulam Tribe
Kurt Schiegl ...
Faum - The Ulam Tribe
Brian Gill ...
Modoc - The Ulam Tribe
Terry Fitt ...
Hourk - The Ulam Tribe
Bibi Caspari ...
Gammla - The Ulam Tribe
Mikr - The Ulam Tribe
Michelle Leduc ...
Matr - The Ulam Tribe
Tsor - The Ulam Tribe


Anthony Burgess created the primitive language for the early humans in this prehistoric adventure about a trio of warriors who travel the savanna, encountering sabre-toothed tigers, mammoths and cannibalistic tribes in search of a flame that would replace the fire their tribe has lost. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A Science Fantasy Adventure


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:







Release Date:

12 February 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Quest for Fire  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office


$12,500,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

€40,602,910, 31 December 1981
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Ron Perlman's film debut. See more »


There are serious errors in the depiction of certain species: 1) The species of humans in the main tribe are supposed to be Homo Sapiens, but they resemble Neanderthals much more closely (Ron Perlman looks like a Neanderthal even without the makeup). 2) Homo Sapiens weren't in Europe 80,000 years ago - they were still making their way out of Africa. 3) The tribe they are attacked by are supposed to be Neanderthals, but they're some sort of hairy ape-creature that had been extinct for over one million years before this film is set (80,000 years ago). 4) There were no saber-toothed cats in Europe at any time. Saber-Toothed cats evolved in North America, then spread to South America during the Great American Interchange (when the Isthmus of Panama rose from the sea and connected North and South America). There *were* very large cave lions (Panthera Spelea) in Europe, but they had the regular dentition of modern African lions (Panthera Leo). See more »


[first lines]
Title Card: 80,000 years ago, man's survival in a vast uncharted land depended on the possession of fire. / For those early humans, fire was an object of great mystery, since no one had mastered its creation. Fire had to be stolen from nature, it had to be kept alive - sheltered from wind and rain, guarded from rival tribes. / Fire was a symbol of power and a means of survival. The tribe who possessed fire, possessed life.
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Referenced in From Stereo to Video (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

The best cave man movie ever!
18 February 2005 | by See all my reviews

Okay, there haven't been many cave man flicks and they were all bad except for Quest For Fire. Yes, the mammoths looked a bit like Mr. Snuffolopogus and some of the makeup jobs could've been done better but it's still a great movie.

The story line was captivating and the characters were well-developed. Even though there were no subtitles, I could still understand everything that was being said because of the way the movie was put together.

This flick has it all: Action, adventure, comedy, and romance. I loved it.

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