6.8/10
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4 user 18 critic

Gladiatorerna (1969)

Not Rated | | Drama, Sci-Fi | 25 June 1969 (Sweden)
Some time in the future, East and West have stopped maintaining standing armies and nuclear weapons. Instead, to settle their differences they pit different teams of crack combat specialists against each other.

Director:

Peter Watkins
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Arthur Pentelow Arthur Pentelow ... British General
Frederick Danner Frederick Danner ... British Staff Officer
Hans Bendrik Hans Bendrik ... Capt. Davidsson
Daniel Harle Daniel Harle ... French Officer
Hans Berger Hans Berger ... West German Officer
Rosario Gianetti Rosario Gianetti ... American Officer
Tim Yum Tim Yum ... Chinese Staff Officer
Kenneth Lo Kenneth Lo ... Chinese Colonel
Björn Franzen Björn Franzen ... Swedish Colonel
Christer Gynge Christer Gynge ... Assistant Controller
Jürgen Schilling Jürgen Schilling ... East German Officer
Stefan Dillan Stefan Dillan ... Russian Officer
Ugo Chiari Ugo Chiari ... Italian Officer
Chandrakant Desai Chandrakant Desai ... Indian Officer
George Harris ... Nigerian Officer
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Storyline

Some time in the future, East and West have stopped maintaining standing armies and nuclear weapons. Instead, to settle their differences they pit different teams of crack combat specialists against each other.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Sweden

Release Date:

25 June 1969 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Gladiators See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Sandrews See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

(July 1970) First prize, Asteroide d'oro, at the International Festival of Science Fiction Film, Trieste, Italy, The jury was composed by Guido Piovene (president), Brian Aldiss, André S. Labarthe, Lajos Matos (of then Yugoslavia), and George Wallach. See more »

Quotes

British Staff Officer: [addressing the allied team] If I may use a boxing metaphor: you can win on points, but what we want is a knock-out.
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User Reviews

Probably one of the best scifi ever made in Sweden....
5 May 2012 | by CurtHerzstarkSee all my reviews

Peter Watkins most famous for directing films like Culloden (1964), The War Game (1965), Privilege (1967) etc went to Sweden to direct this sharp, satirical, surreal anti war film.

To my knowledge, this film has never been broadcast on Swedish TV nor does any of Peter Watkins other productions seem to have been broadcast recently on Swedish TV.

For example 2012 marks the 100th anniversary of writer August Strindbergs death but as I understand, Watkins made a biopic/documentary about Strindberg but has not been showned on TV....at least not yet.

Does Watkins have a lot of enemies or is it that he is a controversial filmmaker that makes him and his films less appealing? Who knows...but an enormous silence surrounding his films and the fact that is very hard to see his films makes one wonder.

Gladiatorerna/ Peace Game(1969)takes place in nearfuture where conventional warfare no longer exist. Instead, countries(regardless of political colour) all over the world gather at a special traininground/maze with their soldiers who are then divided into teams.

Teams go trough this maze filled with boobytraps (some are these are females using the same kind of "sex-up" techniques popular at Guantanamo Bay)controlled by a computer.

The teams try kill each other in the best way possible. Points are given at each kill etc.

But is the system perfect? Can something go wrong? Perhaps, because this surreal, dark, nihilistic scifi film discusses political systems in way few films have done before.

Peter Watkins was ahead of his time in this film, criticizing not just the establishment, but also the growing student uprising(remember this film was made in 1969) and the counter culture.

Biggest flaw for this film is the didactic almost preaching tone that film has sometimes but it is an important message that Watkins wants to give us.

Watkins is very brave for doing so and this film should be seen by more people but alas perhaps this will never happen, mainly because Watkins films are never shown on TV, his films receives little or no attention and hardly any DVD releases.

Why haven't Criterion released his films as of yet on DVD, Blu Ray? It should be done, because he is an important filmmaker.

This film is perhaps not as good as Privilege (1967) a film more accurate today then when it was made but is well worth a look.

Gladiatorerna/Peace Game (1969)is together with Skammen/Shame (1968) and Äkta människor/Real Humans (2012– )three very good scifi productions made in Sweden and that is one of many reasons why people should see this rare film.


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