Logan's Run

From Academic Kids

Logan's Run (novel)
Novel by William F. Nolan & George Clayton Johnson
Released 1967
Original publisher (U.S.) N/A
Genre Science fiction
Professional reviews
SF Reviews.Net T. M. Wagner link (http://www.sfreviews.net/logansrun.html)
Logan's Run (movie)
Missing image

Released 1976
Studio MGM
Director Michael Anderson
Producers Saul David, Hugh Benson
Screenwriter David Zelag Goodman
Music Jerry Goldsmith
Cast Michael York, Richard Jordan, Jenny Agutter, Peter Ustinov, Farrah Fawcett
Aspect ratio 2.35:1 Todd-AO 35
Running time 120 min
IMDb listing link (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0074812/)

Logan's Run is a novel by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson, published in 1967. A film version was made in 1976, directed by Michael Anderson, which was filmed mostly in the Hulen Mall and Water Gardens in Fort Worth, Texas. A television series version was made from 1977 to 1978, produced by Ivan Goff. A remake of the film version, which is said to have a story more similar to the book, is scheduled to be released in 2006.



"The seeds of the Little War were planted in a restless summer during the mid-1960s, with sit-ins and student demonstrations as youth tested its strength.

By the early 1970s over 75 percent of the people living on earth were under twenty-one years of age.

The population continued to climb—and with it the youth percentage.

In the 1980s the figure was 79.7 percent.

In the 1990s, 82.4 percent.

In the year 2000critical mass."

Plot Introduction

In the future, the population's age is limited at twenty one years (thirty in the movie version). When people reach that limit — called Lastday — they are euthanized in a Sleepshop; in the film, there is a ceremony called Carousel, in which they believe they will be reborn. A person's age can be told by looking at a life clock crystal in the palm of their hand, that glows a different colour depending on their age. On Lastday it blinks red.

Runners are people who want to escape this fate. Logan 5 (Logan 3 in the novel), a Deep Sleep Operative, or sandman who polices the Carousel process, becomes a runner himself when his life clock is put forward so he can work undercover. Jessica 6, a contact Logan has because he terminated her runner brother, helps Logan to find the mythical "sanctuary", a place of safety for runners outside of the massive cities that the population is centered in.

Differences between Novel and Film

The film is reasonably faithful to the novel in its first half, with some specific differences. The movie is set in a post-apocalyptic scenario in which the final remnants of humanity live in a domed city sealed off from the outside. Thus the population control policy is designed to prevent overpopulation of the dome. In the novel there has been no worldwide apocalyptic war, but some cities from the past (such as Washington D.C.) have been ruined in a smaller war. Most cities are massive, global, and thriving, which makes the forced euthanasia premise much more cynical. The novel does not contain the Carousel nor the concept of life renewal. Also, in the movie, Logan is assigned by the city's computer to go undercover as a Runner to find Sanctuary and destroy it. In the book, Logan decides to undertake this quest himself on his own Lastday, so that he will be remembered as a hero. For most of the book, therefore, Logan is a much darker character, an antihero, with his character arc being his growing sympathy towards Runners and ultimate desire to reach, not destroy, Sanctuary.

In the movie, Logan finds an ankh pendant on the body of a Runner he has killed, which is a key to Sanctuary. In the novel he finds a card that allows him to contact an underground network of Runners, through which he meets Jessica. Logan's character in the movie is amoral but also naive by comparison to other Sandmen. His character arc is more that of an innocent who is being corrupted by the system.

In the novel, Logan and Jessica travel all over the globe. The character of Box, a psychotic cyborg whom the pair encounter, is much changed in the film. In the novel, Logan and Jessica find themselves trapped in an Arctic prison colony, and are told that Box, the colony's most violent and insane inmate, is their only key to escape. In the movie, Box has been placed at Runners' escape route from the domed city, where he captures and kills Runners so that their bodies can be recycled for food. This gives the film a subplot inspired by the earlier film, Soylent Green. Because of Box, in the film Logan concludes no Runner has ever really escaped and that Sanctuary is a myth.

The film's second half is even more markedly changed from the novel, as described in the next passage.

Plot Conclusion

In the novel Francis, another sandman, catches up with Logan and Jessica after they have managed to escape the cities. He reveals that he and Ballard, a friend of Jessica and Logan who has helped them escape, are one and the same (he was wearing a disguise). The 40-year-old Ballard is working from within the system, and he believes that it is starting to die. Sanctuary turns out to be an abandoned space colony near Mars. Logan and Jessica escape to the colony on a rocket from the remains of the John F. Kennedy Space Center. Ballard remains to continue to help others escape.

The movie version of Logan's Run had a different outcome. Francis, who is Logan's best friend, follows Logan and Jessica in an attempt to save his friend and fulfill his duty by terminating Jessica. They have found the frozen human remains of others who attempted to escape the city guarded by an android. Logan and Jessica narrowly escape the android and conclude that Sanctuary does not exist. In the ruins of Washington D.C., Logan and Jessica meet an old man -- well beyond the thirty-year lifespan that citizens are allowed, and in a confrontation between Logan and Francis, learn that the restrictions on population, Carousel, and the bases for their society are no longer necessary. Francis dies in the fight.

Logan, Jessica, and Old Man decide to return to the City Of Domes to prove the entire human race wrong. Old Man waits at the City borders while Logan and Jessica again penetrate city seals to return inside the Domes. As Logan declares to the city populace the truth about Carousel and the possibility of extended life, both he and Jessica are captured and arrested by the Sandmen and placed under the city computer for interrogation. Logan's denial of Sanctuary causes the computer and the City Of Domes' destruction. Logan and Jessica (and eventually the entire City Populace) escape and the under-thirty citizens meet the old man who accompanied them, thus the human race is freed from totalitarian control. The film's ending is much more sentimental than the book's.

Sequels and Spinoffs

Nolan wrote two sequels, Logan's World and Logan's Search, published after the film's release. There is also a novelette, Logan's Return, that has been published as an E-book.

A brief television series spun off from the film lasted one season in the late 1970s, starring Gregory Harrison as Logan 5 and Heather Menzies as Jessica 6. It lasted from September 16, 1977 through January 7, 1978 on U.S. television (CBS-TV). The show ran for a total of 14 episodes. The series had D.C. Fontana as story editor who employed several other writers from Star Trek as well as the original novel's authors. To save money the scenario was switched from the city to Logan and Jessica on a cross country trek to Sanctuary in a post-apocalyptic America still pursued by Francis, the city was only seen in the Pilot episode using recycled footage from the film. Also in the series the city is run by a cabal of elderly citizens. Logan and Jessica are joined by a comic relief android REM played by Donald Moffatt. Most of the plots were conventional genre cliches.

Marvel Comics also published a short-lived comic book series. A remake of the film has been announced for 2006.


Logan's Run is fast-paced and at times quite graphic. It was considered sexually explicit for the time in which it was written. Although generally dark (forced self-mutilation, sadistic sexual torture), Logan's Run is also quite broadly drawn, with characters such as a cryogenics- and sex-obsessed cyborg and an army of deadly American Civil War recreation androids.

The film details the future society as permissive and includes orgies and the use of drugs.

The film is notable for being the first major motion picture to feature holograms, namely an image of Michael York speaking which was created for an interrogation sequence in the film.

External Links

  • Chronology Central's Logan's Run page (http://www.seedwiki.com/wiki/chronology_central/logans_run.cfm?wpid=183412) - contains a chronological listing of all Logan's Run related fiction.

See also

Template:Wikiquotefr:L'Âge de cristal


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