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Zulu (1964)

War | 138 minutes
3,45 267 votes

Genre: War

Duration: 138 minuten

Country: United Kingdom

Directed by: Cy Endfield

Stars: Stanley Baker, Jack Hawkins and Michael Caine

IMDb score: 7,7 (42.911)

Releasedate: 22 January 1964

Zulu plot

"Dwarfing the mightiest! Towering over the greatest!"

On January 22, 1879, the English lose 1,500 men in one of the heaviest battles against Zulu warriors in the South African province of Natal. A short time later, 4000 Zulus advance towards a supply unit of 140 Englishmen, who are completely trapped. The two lieutenants disagree on how to defend themselves against the Zulus. The film focuses on this 12-hour battle. Based on true events.

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Full Cast & Crew

Actors and actresses

Lt. John Chard R.E.

Rev. Otto Witt

Margareta Witt

Pte. Henry Hook

Lt. Gonville Bromhead

Colour Sgt. Frank Bourne

Sgt. Maxfield

Surgeon Reynolds

Pvt. Thomas

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avatar van scorsese


  • 11910 messages
  • 10268 votes

Good film about an English mission in South Africa that is attacked by a large group of Zulus. This grandly designed war film is based on a true battlefield that took place in 1879. A bit monotonous. Beautifully shot with great camera work. Easily 3.5 stars.

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original

avatar van Boneka


  • 2425 messages
  • 1283 votes

Although dramatized, given the history, I think the story is just well told here. We can even find all the details here. The one thing we'll never know is why a unit didn't pull back after the terrible news of the massacre before that. I think you have to be British for that.

Hadn't seen the film for a while, but when I saw the Blu-ray release I was immediately curious about the quality. Well it is stunningly beautiful! Earlier I saw a beautiful edition of John Wayne's The Searchers, this transfer also looks very nice. Strange that many 80s movies often look so soft, but good that always looks just that little bit nicer. Sound might be a bit less of a 54 year old movie, but still very acceptable. Unfortunately no Dutch subtitles, but the old English is fairly easy to follow.

The film is simply played very well. The most exciting moments are until the actual battle. The threat and the many conversations among each other, with a pastor who pushes the morale of the gentlemen down nicely. If you read the history further, it is of course strange that the Zulu's did not push through. With such a force majeure you naturally crush such a unit.
Unfortunately we will never know either. Perhaps too many Zulus had already been killed.
. The history after that could have been portrayed, but for the film this is a "beautiful" ending. Not particularly spectacular, but pleasant to look at. Just thought the fights looked a bit mediocre. Especially the unnatural falling is striking. You never fall down like a match.

Ps especially read the history written above. Interesting!

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original

avatar van kissyfur


  • 325 messages
  • 498 votes

Disappointed me. I personally don't find the military aspect that exciting, but I can live with that. I find it disturbing that almost no background is given. What were the English doing there? Why did the Zulus attack? What would happen to prisoners of war on either side? Were innovative techniques used? What was the role of the Boers?

And also: were they only convicted criminals or also volunteers and conscripts? How did the ranks and classes interact with each other? What did they actually live on?

Lots of questions that are not answered or are not mentioned in passing. The focus is really mainly on the military aspect and the heroism of the English soldiers - the point of view of the Zulu's is not highlighted. And that makes it all rather one-sided.

Other than that, it's a great movie. Beautifully shot, excellent lead acting. But for me that is not enough.

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original