A Stiff Upper Lip In South Africa: “Zulu”

Zulu (1964) is a powerful war movie and period piece, directed and co-written by Cy Endfield, in which soldiers of the British Empire fight to survive the onslaught of numerous Zulu warriors. The year is 1879. After the film’s first hour, there is a steady drumbeat of unusual conflict until the finish. Endfield is sympathetic mostly to the British because they are outnumbered—easily they could all die—and he is anything but unpatriotic. But he doesn’t withhold respect for the Zulus either, who can be honorable as well as brave. Stanley Baker, the film’s producer, stars as the dignified commanding officer. It is hard to get a handle on Michael Caine‘s character—Lt. Bromhead (though Caine exhibits his usual great talent)—but Zulu is energetic and cohesive nevertheless.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.