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ZARDOZ

UK, 1973 (MIFF 1974)

Director: John Boorman

Zardoz is a bleak projection of twentieth-century western society into the twenty-third century. The film is set in the year 2293. and images a society that has developed from our technology. People are ranked into a new order. On top is an elitist group of failing aesthetes who enjoy eternal youth. They govern through a consensus among complacent intellectuals. Below this privileged group exist the law-breakers who are punished by being deprived of youth. They age to perpetual senility. Then there are the zombies, who lack any spiritual qualities; and lowest of all, sub-human remnants of the old human race. They till the soil outside paradise, watched by their overseers who are bred to the task. From (heir ranks comes Sean Connery to overthrow the new society and re-establish twentieth-century patterns.

Connery's behaviour defies the mechanistic system which created him for a particular task. Charlotte Rampling, one of the elite who would destroy him after he invades paradise, becomes a new Eve, and the drama follows out parallels with creation myths.

'The results: direction, good: script, a brilliant premise; and production, outstanding, particularly special visual effects which are among the best in recent years. . .'

Mosk, Variety

See also...

VENGEANCE

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Vengeance (Baochou) Hong KongTake John Boorman's classic revenge drama Point Blank and transplant it to northern China in 1925. After Chinese opera player Guan Yulou is murdered by a group of crimina… More »

LEO THE LAST

UK, 1969
As in Boorman's other films, its material is the complex problem of civilisation, here pinpointed in a London slum. Leo, an exiled European aristocrat, accompanied by his mistress, Margaret, and his … More »

Ennio Morricone

UK, 1996
Morricone began composing at the age of six and his professional career began in Italy's fledgling pop industry as an arranger where he quickly gained a reputation for his idio­syncratic utilisat… More »

ORDINARY DECENT CRIMINAL

Ireland/USA/UK/Germany, 1999
The escapades of notorious Irish criminal and folk hero, Martin Cahill, have spawned three films in as many years. John Boorman's excellent The General, followed by Vicious Circle and now Thaddeus O'… More »

POINT BLANK

USA, 1967
Walker (Lee Marvin) and his colleagues plan a cash robbery on the former prisoner island of Alcatraz but he is double-crossed by his colleague, Mai, who shoots him and leaves him for dead. Walker, th… More »

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