Review: ‘Zardoz’

Zardoz is a futuristic, metaphysical and anthropological drama testing John Boorman in three creative areas. The results: direction, good; script, a brilliant premise which unfortunately washes out in climactic sound and fury; and production, outstanding, particularly special visual effects which belie the film's modest cost. Sean Connery heads the cast as a 23rd-century Adam.

Zardoz is a futuristic, metaphysical and anthropological drama testing John Boorman in three creative areas. The results: direction, good; script, a brilliant premise which unfortunately washes out in climactic sound and fury; and production, outstanding, particularly special visual effects which belie the film’s modest cost. Sean Connery heads the cast as a 23rd-century Adam.

The story, set in 2293, postulates a world society which this century’s runaway technology forced into being. The highest order beings are an elitist group of effete aesthetics, eternally youthful on a spiritual plane. Connery rises from the lower ranks to overthrow the new order and recycle mankind into its older pattern.

Connery manifests well the brooding duality of man’s nature, emerging from mechanical breeding to eventually tear down the system that created him.

Zardoz

UK - US

Production

20th Century-Fox. Director John Boorman; Producer John Boorman; Screenplay John Boorman; Camera Geoffrey Unsworth; Editor John Merritt; Music David Munrow; Art Director Anthony Pratt

Crew

(Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1974. Running time: 104 MIN.

With

Sean Connery Charlotte Rampling Sara Kestelman John Alderton Sally Anne Newton Niall Buggy

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