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Zardoz, Connery's crowning glory

By society editor Wolfgang Bang

Posted March 11, 2014
connery in zardoz
Best dressed man: Anyone seen my leather cap? (Check bottom for credit)

Wolfgang Bang reviews John Boorman's 1974 sci-fi/fantasy flustercuck 'Zardoz'.


Written, produced and directed by John Boorman and starring Sean Connery and Charlotte Rampling.

'Beyond 1984, Beyond 2001, beyond comprehension.'

This film is ace.

Don't even try to follow the plot.

It's just too marvellous.

Just keep drinking and asking yourself which huge portion of the film's budget was snorted away in an effort to rival the special effects of future BBC children's series Rentaghost.

I'm not knocking it.

If I made Zardoz, the pride in my creation would become an all-consuming juggernaut.

Zardoz is set in the year 2293 on an Earth where the last pub in existence has closed due to crippling beer taxes.

As a result, boredom has caused post-alcohol humanity to fall into three strata of society:

• The Brutals, primitive savages who hunter-gather and can't stop poking to make babies;

• The Eternals, who wear flimsy 70s dresses and are bored shitless with everything, including themselves, until Camden Market opens; and

• The Exterminators, who kill Brutals and are friends of Dorothy.

cling film
For f--k's sake! Someone hasn't watered these plants. (Check bottom for credit)

The film opens with Sportacus from kids telly nightmare LazyTown filling us in on what's going on.

Which isn't much.

Then a plaster cast of Brian Blessed's head, moulded during the straight-to-anal director's cut of Flash Gordon, floats about in the sky for a bit.

Then it lands on Bodmin Moor and says: "The gun is good, the penis is evil. The penis shoots seeds and makes new life to poison the Earth, but the gun shoots death and purifies."

And all guns fly out of its mouth and Sean Connery wears a mankini and thigh-high leather boots.

Wardrobe ran out of arseless chaps and feather boas, apparently.


I would be so proud of that I would cry.

Phwaor! It says: "Remove from packaging. Boil in bag for 30 minutes." (Check bottom for credit)

Connery then gets in the head, kills Sportacus and it takes him to a low-budget castle where the Eternals' crap special effects and cling film live.

He's treated like a man wearing arseless chaps and a feather boa should be and they make him watch a rudie film so his old chap gets hard 'cos the Eternal men can't get a stiffy.

Then Connery realises that a bloke called Arthur lent him Frank L Baum's wiZARD of OZ.


Could the world's religions be based on something as innocuous as a children's story?

Only if you like shit analogies and lick toads to see colours.

And then and then and Charlotte Rampling and stuff.


I drank a slab of Tetley Bitter then I was sick on the carpet and Brunhilda cleaned it up and now the carpet smells of bleach with a faint odour of sick.

John Boorman also made Deliverance1, but that wasn't as good as this film.

Not by a long chalk.

As a result, I'm banned from bringing any more DVDs round.

A cult classic.

And if you don't believe our Bang, just have a watch of the trailer, embedded here on the Rake & Herald from tubesoda's YouTube channel. And once you've watched that, click this just to see the cock GIF if nothing else. Makes you wonder if they took acid in the 70s.

See also Double O Doo, posted 10/2/14.

Wolfgang Bang
is a former skate punk who dropped the skateboard but remains reliably enraged by various aspects of modern culture. His oaths and verbal abuse still echo around the fashionable Portobello Road area of West London. His hobbies include long-range outdoor drinking, cooking and modern history. He spends much of his time in a hedge with an air rifle, waiting for the rabbits of mass media to pop out of their burrows and graze on the sweet grass of empty promises.


1) Chief hack's note: Among other things, John Boorman also made the pretty darn good Hope and Glory and The Tailor of Panama. Admittedly, I haven't actually seen that latter film but the book by John le Carré is excellent, a modern retelling of the Graham Greene classic Our Man in Havana. Both are definitely worth a read if you haven't read them already.

Picture credits

Top, thumb, middle and bottom: We grabbed these photos off the interweb so we aren't sure who actually owns the copyright but we assume it's either John Boorman Productions and/or 20th Century Fox.

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