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Run, Runner!


 Sometime in the 23rd century...the survivors of war, overpopulation and pollution are living in a great domed city, sealed away from the forgotten world outside. Here, in an ecologically balanced world, mankind lives only for pleasure, freed by the servo-mechanisms which provide everything. There's just one catch: Life must end at thirty unless reborn in the fiery ritual of Carrousel.


Logan's Run is a movie based on a novel of the same name by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson, depicting a future where everyone is young and healthy, no one needs to work, and people look forward to the chance for "renewal" (presumably some sort of rebirth or reincarnation) in the Carousel at the age of 30, a privilege given to those who have obeyed the rules faithfully. However, there is a darker side to this apparent utopia: Nobody has ever survived Carousel. Resource management and population control are simply maintained by mandating the death of everyone who reaches the age of 30.

Logan 5 is a 26-year-old Sandman whose job it is to hunt down and kill "Runners" — those who reach 30 but don't report for Carousel. When he learns that the Runners are trying to reach a place called Sanctuary outside the domed city, he is assigned to find this place and destroy it. In order to do this, he will masquerade as a Runner. His life-clock is adjusted accordingly — with no assurance that he'll get his 4 lost years back — and he finds himself pursued by his fellow Sandmen as he searches for the truth behind Sanctuary.

Of humorous note is that this movie was released in the year (1976) that the oldest Baby Boomers, who had coined the phrase "Don't trust anyone over 30," turned 30 themselves.

Tropes used in Logan's Run include:
  • Abnormal Ammo
    • Moreso in the book. The Guns there were 6-chambered revolvers, where each chamber carried a different specialized round. The arsenal of a Sandman resembled the Green Arrow, with rounds named Tangler, Ripper, Nitro, Vapor, Needler, and the dreaded Homer.
  • Aesoptinium
  • After the End: The world outside the domed City is all ruins, including an overgrown Washington, D.C..
    • But inhabitable, and unpolluted... showing that whatever disaster occurred that the dome city and population controls were designed to protect people against is now moot.
  • Ancient Keeper: Box.
  • Ascetic Aesthetic: The public areas of the dome city. Logan's private quarters are decorated in dark tones, rather than white and light colors but still maintain the clean uncluttered appearance of the Ascetic Aesthetic.
  • Billing Displacement: STARRING FARRAH FAWCETT - TV Guide ad. Except Jenny Agutter was the female lead, and Farrah's role was a minor part as an assistant in a face-lift shop.
  • Bread and Circuses
  • Children Are a Waste: This seems to be the prevailing mindset. Most people live carefree lives and don't bother with child rearing. Their "Utopia" has no family units, children are put in state homes by their "seed mother" and raised en masse. Francis notes most men don't bother to hang out at the nursery to meet their children, and Logan (who is doing just that) makes the point that he's not so deviant he's interested in meeting the mother.
  • Christmas Cake: Largely a non-issue, since no one lives past thirty.
    • No one gets married, either. Until Logan and Jessica make it ouside of the city and see gravestones talking about husbands and wives.
  • City in a Bottle
  • Collapsing Lair: Logan shoots a support beam in the ceiling of Box's cave, and the whole cavern comes crashing down.
    • At the end, the entire domed city complex collapses because Logan, uh, shot the computer in the eye, therefore making the entire building explode, therefore making the entire city explode.
  • Color Coded for Your Convenience: The Sandmen all wear black and blue uniforms. Also the life crystals change colour.
    • Within the City, those who aren't Sandmen wear clothes the same colour as their lifeclocks. The babies in Nursery are wrapped in white, the Cubs in Cathedral are sporting tattered yellow garments, older teen-agers are wearing green, and twenty-somethings all wear red.
    • Presumably, the 30-year-olds' outfits at the "Renewal" are red below and white above, because it's assumed they'll be reborn as infants and wear white again.
  • Comic Book Adaptation: Three times; first with Marvel Comics, not long after the film, second was Malibu Comics back in 1990, and in 2010 with Bluewater Productions' Logan's Run: Last Day, which takes aspects from the original Marvel run.
  • Composite Character : Inverted, Francis 7 from the novel has part of his characterization and storyline split off to form the character of the Old Man, making Francis more overtly the antognist than the somewhat ambiguous status of the original character.
  • Computer Voice: The Master Computer.
  • Crap Saccharine World: The City looks like a wonderful, hedonistic utopia; until you find out what goes on behind the scenes.
  • Crystal Spires and Togas: Subverted.
  • Dawson Casting: Michael York was already in his late thirties. Jenny Agutter was 24, playing a 17-year-old.
    • The main reason the death-age was raised from 21 in the novel, to 30 in the movie, was because the actors chosen to play the roles could never pass as teen-agers. Richard Jordan (Francis 7) was 38 years old during filming.
      • This also bypasses issues with the limited hours younger actors can work-- not to mention the uncomfortable implications for some of sexually-active 14- and 15-year-old "adults".
  • Death's Hourglass: The life crystals.
  • Development Hell: A remake has been in the works for some time now.
  • The Ditz: Holly 13 (Farrah Fawcett's character)
  • Domed Hometown
  • Earth All Along: Logan and Jessica make it to the surface only to find the ruins of Washington, D.C.
  • Elaborate Underground Base
  • Empire with a Dark Secret: Renewal. Everybody believes that some who sacrifice themselves in Carousel at age 30 are granted "Renewal", presumably reincarnation. (One draft of the movie's script implies that Logan is named "Logan 5" because he's the 5th renewal of the original Logan.) But the sordid truth is, it's a made-up quasi-religion to keep the population under control, and to encourage everyone to voluntarily kill themselves while still in the prime of life.
    • The notion of Renewal may have sprung from Arthur C. Clarke's The City and the Stars. In that novel, people in the utopian city of Diaspar live for a thousand years, then turn themselves in to the "furnace of creation" which destroys their bodies but retains all their memories. They are reborn a random number of thousands of years later, so that they can meet all new people and not get bored by an eternity of immortality.
  • Executive Meddling: The powers that be insisted that many important scenes be cut so the result would be rated PG.
    • We still get a quick glimpse of some bare ta-tas, though.
      • Think of it as Movie Ratings March On. PG used to be much more permissive before the creation of the PG-13 rating.
  • First Time in the Sun
  • Follow the Leader: Try to explain the plot of this movie to somebody who hasn't seen it. "Um, in a dystopian future, there are cops who hunt people down for trying to exceed their government-mandated lifespans ..." Similarity to any later film is a coincidence.
  • Free-Love Future
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: A unexpected point of realism here.
  • Ghost City: Washington, D.C.. The only living residents are an old man and a bunch of housecats.
  • Growing Up Sucks
  • Hologram: In the scene where Logan is interrogated about Sanctuary, the main computer creates holograms of his head that express his thoughts.
  • Humans Are White: All the citizens of the city are conspicuously white.
  • Inferred Holocaust: So, with the city destroyed, how will the people survive when they can't fend for themselves?
  • Insane Troll Logic: It's basically Box's operating system.
    • "Fish, plankton, sea greens...PROTEIN FROM THE SEA! "
  • Knight Templar: Francis 7's mad pursuit of Logan and Jessica, far in excess of his duties as a Sandman, was fuelled by his unwavering belief in Renewal. He goes crazy when he sees that his lifeclock has presumably turned clear white outside the City, which contradicts everything he believes in.
  • Living Relic
  • Load-Bearing Boss: The City's central computer. When it goes, the whole city goes with it.
    • Admittedly, Logan did shoot out a support beam from the ceiling, but at worst that should have caused the building to collapse, not caused the collapse of the entire dome network.
  • Logic Bomb: "There... is... no... Sanctuary!"
  • Membership Token: The ankh necklaces are used by The Runners to identify each other.
  • Mind Screw: The Logic Bomb scene above.
  • Monochrome Casting
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Francis 7 goes crazy and attacks Logan 5 on the floor of Congress. (Well, the floor of the room where Congress used to meet centuries earlier, at least.) Logan finally wins the upper hand, and bashes Francis repeatedly with a flag pole. When Logan hits him with the flag pole a third time, to make sure he stays down, Logan suddenly realizes he's inflicted fatal injuries on his lifelong best friend.
  • New Eden
  • No Blood Ties The characters don't know their parents and most don't care.
  • Only Fatal to Adults: ... at least, those over 30.
  • The Promised Land: Runners believe Sanctuary to be this. In an interesting variation, from the point of view of the audience, it's a Cynical Flavour B; but the characters still see it as an Idealistic version when they finally reach it. Which tells you just how much of a Crap Saccharine World they live in.
  • Reactionary Fantasy: The book indicated that those damn hippies would create a world where an eleven-year-old girl announces that she's sexually "skilled beyond all others", where fourteen is adulthood and everyone dies at twenty-one.
  • Recycled: the Series Not long after the movie, there was a television adaptation that lasted about one season.
  • Teenage Wasteland: More in the book than in the movie, but in both cases, the world clearly belongs to the young.
  • Terminally Dependent Society
  • Too Dumb to Live: Holly 13.
  • Utopia: ... technically.
  • Vapor Wear: Several people, especially Jessica 6.
    • The female costumes were utterly impractical as clothing. Actresses had to have their costumes sewn shut around their bodies so that they wouldn't have any visible zippers or buttons.
  • Veganopia: The characters are horrified to discover that people used to raise animals for food.
    • Ancient Keeper Box seemed to make it clear that a) the "fish, plankton, and protein from the sea" that he was supposed to store for the cities had stopped and b) Runners had started showing up in time to be frozen. We may have a Soylent Green moment here.
    • In the shooting script for the movie, there were 1056 people frozen in the chambers that Box tended. This is exactly the same as the number of unaccounted runners shown by the computer earlier.
  • We Will Have Euthanasia in the Future
  • You Are Number Six: Characters are named 'Name X,' As in Logan 5, Jessica 6.