5.8/10
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Zardoz (1974)

In the distant future, a savage trained only to kill finds a way into the community of bored immortals that alone preserves humanity's achievements.

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ON DISC
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Zed
... Consuella
Sara Kestelman ... May
... Friend
Sally Anne Newton ... Avalow
Niall Buggy ... Arthur Frayn / Zardoz
... George Saden
Jessica Swift ... Apathetic
Bairbre Dowling ... Star
Christopher Casson ... Old Scientist
Reginald Jarman ... Death (voice)
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Storyline

2293. Zardoz, an unseen "God" who speaks through an idol - a large stone statue of a head - leads a barbaric race called the Brutals, who live a harsh existence in the Outlands. Zardoz tells the Brutals that once they die, they will be transported to the Vortex, where they will live happily as immortals. He has armed a small group - the Exterminators - with guns, as Zardoz's philosophy is that killing is good, and procreation is the root of all that is bad. In reality, Zardoz is Arthur Frayn, from a competing more advanced race called the Eternals who live in paradise in the Vortex. The Eternals truly are immortal as they do not age and their bodies undergo reconstruction if they "die". As such, they truly do not believe in procreation as their society has reached perfect equilibrium. Past human acts such as sex and sleep are obsolete in their advanced state. All major decisions are achieved through pure democracy. The Eternals, however, are not immune to non life threatening disease ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Into a world of eternal life, he brought the gift of death See more »

Genres:

Fantasy | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

6 February 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Зардоз  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,570,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The opening sequence is an introduction added by John Boorman, at the request of 20th Century Fox executives, to help the audience understand the film. See more »

Goofs

Early in the film, when the weapons are spewed out of the floating head's mouth, several crew-members' arms and a face, can be seen throwing them. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Arthur Frayn: I am Arthur Frayn, and I am Zardoz. I have lived three hundred years, and I long to die. But death is no longer possible. I am immortal. I present now my story, full of mystery and intrigue - rich in irony, and most satirical. It is set deep in a possible future, so none of these events have yet occurred, but they *may.* Be warned, lest you end as I. In this tale, I am a fake god by occupation - and a magician, by inclination. Merlin is *my* hero! I am the puppet master. I ...
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Connections

Referenced in Traceroute (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Rondo in A minor for Piano
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Nothing like it ever made!
12 January 2002 | by See all my reviews

I've seen some weird movies in my time! 'The Holy Mountain', 'Human Highway', 'Men behind The Sun', 'Nude For Satan', 'Pink Flamingos', 'Dune', but NOTHING as weird as 'Zardoz'! Nothing!

'Zardoz' has the feel of a Alan Smithee movie. It's like you're watching a movie made by committee or recut behind the director's back. But you see that it is written, produced and directed by John Boorman, the man who made the still dazzling revenge thriller 'Point Blank', and the first rate hillbilly suspense classic 'Deliverance', and you realize that this movie is EXACTLY what Boorman intended it to be. And your mind boggles!

'Zardoz' is neither a mindless sci fi action movie not a serious SF-as-ideas film ala Tarkovsky or Kubrick. It's... well, I don't know WHAT it is! A trippy Dystopian fantasy that cribs a few ideas from other sources (Huxley's Savage, Wells' Eloi and Morlocks, Moorcock's Jherek Carnelian), adds plenty of philosophical gobbledygook, some semi-naked babes, an embarrassed looking pony-tailed Sean Connery, and by the look of it, mixes in a bucket full of psychotropics, and hey presto! you end up with a movie like no other before or since!

'Zardoz' MUST be seen! By you. Right now. Unforgettable.


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