Escape to the 23rd century

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German title Escape to the 23rd century
Original title Logan's Run
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1976
length 120 minutes
Age rating FSK 12
Director Michael Anderson
script David Zelag Goodman , book: William F. Nolan , George Clayton Johnson
production Saul David
music Jerry Goldsmith
camera Ernest Laszlo
cut Bob Wyman

Escape to the 23rd Century (original title Logan's Run ) is an American science fiction film from 1976 directed by Michael Anderson . It is based on the novel Logan's Run by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson . In the 23rd century people live in an affluent society in cities underground and have no worries. However, the age of the residents is limited to 30 years, but not everyone is satisfied with that. Logan 5, played by Michael York , is supposed to find the so-called refuge and destroy it, which is why his life is shortened prematurely.


Fort Worth Water Gardens, setting for the final scene

A futuristic affluent society has formed within huge domes, which shield from the supposedly uninhabitable outside world, in which everyone can lead a carefree life up to their 30th birthday. Everything is monitored by a strict control system controlled by a supposedly omniscient large computer . This also includes a life clock , which was implanted in the palm of each resident shortly after birth and which clearly shows the remaining life. The residents are fooled into believing that a renewal is possible after the specified lifespan has expired, that is, that they will be reborn; in fact, all aspirants for this renewal are killed. Logan 5 is an experienced sandman who is responsible for eliminating so-called runners who want to evade the ritual of renewal . Logan is chosen by the computer to find the runners' hideout, the refuge , and destroy it. To this end, Logan is supposed to pretend to be a runner to infiltrate the dissidents. The computer shortens its life by four years.

Logan 5 is able to convince Jessica 6, who is a member of the network of runners , that he is not planning on betrayal. With their help he finds access to the secret meeting point of the runners. Logan's best friend, Francis 7, also a sandman, has grown suspicious and takes up the chase. He witnesses how Logan 5 does not execute a female runner as it would have been his duty, but instead helps to escape. Francis 7 shoots the runner and then attacks Logan 5 and Jessica 6, who manage to escape into the underground of the city.

Logan 5 and Jessica 6 take an elevator through a labyrinth of dilapidated technical systems that have not been used for a long time to reach an ice cave above the city. There they meet the Cyborg BOX . They learn from him that he has frozen all over 1000 runners who have used the same escape route to date according to his ancient programming and thus made them durable . To avoid the same fate, Logan destroys 5 BOX. He and Jessica 6 eventually reach the surface and stumble upon the plant-overgrown ruins of Washington, DC There they meet a gray-bearded man far older than the allowed 30 years. Its existence makes it clear to them that the age limit of their society was created arbitrarily.

Suddenly Francis 7 appears, who has been on the trail of both of them the whole time. A fight ensues in the course of which Logan 5 kills his friend. Logan and Jessica return to town to explain the madness of renewal to residents , but are arrested by the Sandmen . During the subsequent interrogation by the computer, Logan reports on his discoveries outside the dome. Since these reports contradict what the computer sees as fact, it becomes overloaded and thereby destroyed. The loss of control leads to destruction in the domed city, whereupon all residents flee. Finally, the refugees gather in amazement around the old man who had been waiting for Logan and Jessica to return.


Escape to the 23rd Century, which at over $ 9 million was almost as expensive as Star Wars , was a great commercial success and grossed $ 2.5 million in the first five days. The special effects and structures were convincing, the design of the overgrown ruins of Washington D. C. was particularly impressive. The film received criticism for the fact that the script only roughly adheres to the novel by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson.


The reviews were mixed. Roger Ebert gave the film 3 out of four stars. Variety magazine praised the intelligence and escapism of the film.

The criticism in The New York Times was less positive: The film did not value logic, but more on effects.

New York Magazine was also negative in its judgment. It is just another end-of-time film that is not worth the money. However, the acting performance of York and Agutter was praised.

In 2015, Rolling Stone magazine ranked the film 27th on its list of the best science fiction films of the 1970s. The film has a 61% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes - based on 33 reviews.

Differences to the literature

Aside from the basic premise , the film is very different from the novel. In particular, the motivations of the characters and central statements have been changed. The book is not about an isolated society within an underground city, but basically the entire population of the earth. Everyone involved is also aware that they will definitely end their lives when they reach the age limit of 21 years. Logan does not become a “runner” by instruction, but acts out of personal drive, originally even with purely destructive intent. Francis pursues him to prevent the destruction of the real "refuge" that is on a space station in orbit around Mars. While Logan and Jessica go there with a rocket, Francis stays on earth to help more people to escape.



role actor Voice actor
Logan 5 Michael York Thomas Danneberg
Francis 7 Richard Jordan Christian Brückner
Jessica 6 Jenny Agutter Cornelia Meinhardt
old man Peter Ustinov Hans Dieter Zeidler
BOX Roscoe Lee Browne Lothar Blumhagen


  • USA June 23, 1976
  • Germany March 4th 1977

Television series

After the film, a 14-part television series called Logan's Run was made, of which eleven episodes were broadcast in the United States from September 1977. The last three episodes were no longer broadcast. The series was never broadcast in Germany. There is only one French version, which was completely broadcast in France.


The novels

  • William F. Nolan, George Clayton Johnson: Escape to the 23rd Century. Heyne, Munich 1984, ISBN 3-453-30438-1 .

After the success of the film, Nolan decided to continue the story and released Logan's World and Logan's Search . Both novels are based on the literature and not on the film.

The comics

Marvel Comics brought out seven comic books on the film in 1977, Nos. 1–5 were adaptations of the film, in Nos. 6 and 7 they tried to spin the story further. Although a number 8 was announced in issue 7, the series was discontinued. 1981's Bizarre Adventures # 28 has a story called The Huntsman . The plot of the story is set before that of the film and was planned as a back-up story for the series.

Adventures Comic brought out the miniseries Logan's Run in 1990 , the six issues of which were an adaptation of the books by Clayton Johnson and William F. Nolan. The cover pictures were designed by six different draftsmen (Book 1 by Paul Gulacy), while the story and the black and white drawings in the book came from Barry Blair. On the front was the note "only for adults" and in the first issue was a foreword by William F. Nolan.

In 1991, Adventures Comic brought out the Logan's World series , which also consisted of six issues and had a foreword from William F. Nolan. This time Barry Blair contributed the cover pictures as well as the story and the drawings in the booklets.

Brown Watson Comics ran a Logan's Run Annual in 1978 , which was a magazine with photos, a short novel, game, and two comic book stories related to the television series Logan's Run . Short black and white comic strips from the television series Logan's Run were published in the magazine “Look-In” , 22 stories starting with issue 15 and the last story in issue 38 (September 1978).

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Staff: Review: 'Logan's Run' . In: Varietyy . December 31, 1975. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
  2. Logan's Run , a Science-Fiction Fantasy . In: The New York Times . June 24, 1976. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
  3. ^ Logan's Run. In: New York Magazine. July 5, 1976. p. 75.
  4. EH: 50 Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 1970s . In: Rolling Stone . January 14, 2015. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
  5. ^ Logan's Run (1976) . In: Rotten Tomatoes . Retrieved April 12, 2020.
  6. ^ Escape to the 23rd century. In: German dubbing file , accessed on March 2, 2017 .
  7. “Logan's Run” (1977) ( English ) IMDb . Retrieved January 24, 2010.
  8. Tv Shows on DVD
  9. Digital Bits ( Memento of the original from January 23, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.  @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /