"Zulu" 1964 Movie – Final Battle Including "Men of Harlech" Song.

Zulu is a 1964 epic war film depicting the Battle of Rorke’s Drift between the British Army and the Zulus in January 1879, during the Anglo-Zulu War. It depicts 150 British soldiers, many of whom were sick and wounded patients in a field hospital, who successfully held off a force of 4,000 Zulu warriors.

The ending of the film is somewhat fictitious. There was no Zulu attack at dawn on 23 January 1879, which in the film led to the singing of “Men of Harlech”, but it sure made for dramatic Hollywood an ending to be viewed again and again.

Men of Harlech is widely used as a regimental march, especially by British Army and Commonwealth regiments historically associated with Wales. Notably, it is the slow march of the Welsh Guards, and the quick march of the Royal Welsh.

It was first used for cinema during the titles of How Green Was My Valley (1941) and has featured in a number of other films. It is best known for its prominent role in the 1964 film Zulu, although the version of lyrics sung in it were written specially for the film. It is sung twice, only once completely, in the film (the British begin shooting the charging Zulus before the start of the final couplet), in counterpoint to the Zulu war chants and the sounds of their shields. Film editor John Jympson cut the scene to the song so that on either side of cuts where the British soldiers cannot be heard, the song is in the correct relative position. The song is also heard in the film Zulu Dawn, which is about the battle that precedes Rorke’s Drift, the Battle of Isandlwana.

20 thoughts on “"Zulu" 1964 Movie – Final Battle Including "Men of Harlech" Song.

  1. i know that the english soldiers began to sing some bible versicles because they mention the lord, but someone can translate what the zulu warriors are singing?

  2. A bit of trivia on the battle of Rorkes Drift. Many will say that the british had an advantage because they had rifles but the truth of the matter was the martini henry rifle the british used despite it been a fairly modern for the time breech loading rifle was prone to stoppages in the dusty conditions of south africa. So after firing a few rounds would cease up and basically be a cnut to get it working again. Now imagine trying to clear a stoppage with thousands of zulus bearing down on you. The kick of the martini henry rifle was also very savage and would of badly bruise shoulders and was even be known to break collar bones of those using it. So more often than not after awhile of intense fighting the gun was fired wildly from the hip as everyones shoulders were fucked. Because of this, most of the action was up close and personal going hand to hand. Bayonet vs iklwa (short 2 foot stabbing spear) which is the name given to the zulu spear for the sound it made leaving the human body after it had been stabbed. So the fact that 90 odd men took on over 6 thousand zulus makes this battle even more impressive. The zulus also took a special snuff which made them fearless gave them strength and speed. The snuff was made from pure cannabis sativa mixed with a locally grown magic mushroom. The zulus liked to open up the bodies of their enemy from stem to stern as a way of releasing the fallen warriors spirit. The zulus learnt very early on that it was no match in hand to hand fighting aganst a well trained soldier armed with a bayonet and would pick up a dead comrade and charge the british carrying the dead comrade. The body would be thrown and impaled on the bayonet and and another comrade would then stab the british soldier dead. So the thought of thousands of drug crazed zulus coming to slice you open and carrying dead comrades must of been terrifying to say the least. Many of the survivors of Rorkes Drift suffered badly in the years after from PTSD and many became opium addicts, alcoholics and many committed suicide and many were homeless and died in workhouses. So much for a country fit for heroes…

  3. I love how wild and lively the actors for the Zulus get when they’re beating their shields, working themselves up into a frenzy and building up their confidence for the coming battle

  4. Watch it, appreciate it. Before it gets cancelled by a small vocal minority of entitled keyboard warriors seeking to eradicate any patriotism and British values left in these isles.

  5. It was a tragedy to kill such a brave enemy but such is war, young men dying because of old men's egos and pride!

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