O Lucky Man! (1973)

178m (USA), 186m (UK)

A British fantasy film directed by Lindsay Anderson. Production began on 20 March 1972.


Directed by: Lindsay Anderson
© MCMLXXIII [1973] Warner Bros. Inc.
Memorial Enterprises-SAM/ Made by Memorial-Sam
Producers: Michael Medwin and Lindsay Anderson
Associate Producer: Basil Keys
Screenplay: David Sherwin
O Lucky Man! was based on an original idea by Malcolm McDowell
Director of Photography: Miroslav Ondrícek
Editor: David Gladwell
Music & Songs: Alan Price
Sound: Chris Wangler
Wardrobe: Elsa Fennell
Make-up: Paul Rabiger & Basil Newall
Hairdresser: Colin Jamison
Special Effects: John Stears
Production Designer: Jocelyn Herbert
Made on location in England and Scotland

Malcolm McDowell (Mick [Travis])
Ralph Richardson (Sir James [Burgess]/Monty)
Rachel Roberts (Gloria [Rowe]/Madame Paillard/Mrs Richards)
Arthur Lowe (Mr Duff/Charlie Johnson/Dr Munda)
Helen Mirren (Patricia)
Dandy Nichols (tea lady/neighbour)
Mona Washbourne (neighbour/usher/Sister Hallett)
Peter Jeffrey (factory chairman/prison governor)
Graham Crowden (Stewart/Prof Millar/meths drinker)
Philip Stone (Jenkins/interrogator/Salvation Army major)
Mary Macleod (Mary Ball/Salvationist/vicar's wife)
Michael Bangerter (William/interrogator/assistant/released prisoner)
Wallas Eaton (John Stone (coffee factory)/Steiger/meths drinker/film executive/warder)
Warren Clark (master of ceremonies (nightspot)/Warner/male nurse)
Bill Owen (Barlow (nightspot)/superintendent)
Michael Medwin (Duke of Belminster/captain/power station technician)
Vivian Pickles (good lady)
Geoffrey Palmer (Basil Keyes/doctor)
Geoffrey Chater (bishop/vicar)
Anthony Nicholls (general/judge)
Brian Glover (foreman/power station guard)
Edward Judd (Oswald)

Alternative Titles

Coffee Man – working title
Der Erfolgreiche – West Germany
Un hombre de suerte – Spain
Le meilleur des mondes possible – France
Onnenpoika – Finland
Szczelsiwy czloweik – Poland

Sequel to
If…. (1968)

Britannia Hospital (1982)


Monthly Film Bulletin vol.40 no.473 (June 1973) pp.128-129
Where Kubrick [in A Clockwork Orange (1971)] took a daring leap into imagination to furnish a glimpse of a society in which violence and sadism have become the least of its worries in view of the disturbing interchangeability between goodies and baddies, Anderson's record has got stuck – despite the debatable Zen about ten years back with the old humanist cry of despair about them and us. Which humanist cry is no bad thing in itself, of course, except that it is undercut by the pretentious paraphernalia of borrowings (including Fellini, no less), in-jokes and self-justifications. – by Tom Milne

Sight & Sound vol.18 no.1 (January 2008) p.96
O Lucky Man! wasn't the commercial success its predecessor had been (its nearly three-hour length reduced the number of possible daily screenings by a third), but it told a similarly magic-realist story, on the same socially responsible terms, in more linear and upbeat fashion. Made still more approachable by a charmingly sage pop score by Alan Price (whose band appear on camera throughout the film as a musical Greek chorus), the film became as beloved in its decade as If…. had been to filmgoers of the late 1960s […] Nowhere else in cinema will you find such a bleak worldview infused with such infectious, ebullient, indomitable joy, attentive to the magical propensities of life even when at its darkest.



  • Cinema Rising no.2 (May 1972) p.2 – article
  • CinemaTV Today no.9963 (15 January 1972) p.9 – note (McDowell in Solo's first)
  • CinemaTV Today no.9973 (25 March 1972) p.33 – credits
  • CinemaTV Today no.10031 (12 May 1973) p.40 – review
  • Film Comment vol.10 no.1 (January/February 1974) pp.38-40 – article
  • Film-Echo/Filmwoche no.32 (1 June 1973) p.8 – review
  • Filmfacts vol.16 no.5 (1973) pp.109 – 115 – credits, reprinted reviews
  • Film Heritage vol.9 no.4 (Summer 1974) pp.36-37 – review
  • Films and Filming no.9 (June 1973) pp.45-46 – credits, review
  • The Hollywood Reporter vol.221 no.21 (19 May 1972) p.15 – credits
  • The Hollywood Reporter vol.226 no.28 (29 May 1973) p.3 – review
  • Image et Son no.272 (May 1973) pp.85-89 – review
  • Listener, The vol.113 no.2911 (30 May 1985) p.35 – review
  • Literature/Film Quarterly vol.2 no.3 (Summer (1974) pp.256-261 – article
  • Monthly Film Bulletin vol.40 no,473 (June 1973) pp.128-129 – credits, review (by Tom Milne)
  • Monthly Film Bulletin vol.40 no.475 (August 1973) p.180 – note
  • Radio Times vol.231 no.2994 (28 March 1981) p.12 – review
  • Screen vol.16 no.4 (Winter 1975/1976) pp.62-80 – article
  • Sight & Sound vol.42 no.3 (Summer 1973) pp.126-129 – review
  • Sight & Sound vol.3 no.10 (October 1993) p.61 – note
  • Sight & Sound vol.18 no.1 (January 2008) p.96 – illustrated review (No zone: Lucky charmer by Tim Lucas)
  • Take One vol.3 no.11 (May/June 1972) pp.29-30 – article
  • Time Out no.168 (11 May 1973) p.21 – review
  • Variety 18 April 1973 p.30 – credits, review


  • Encyclopedia of Rock Music on Film by Linda J. Sandahl p.189
  • English Gothic: A Century of Horror Cinema by Jonathan Rigby p.274
  • Film Review 1974-75 by F. Maurice Speed (ed) p.202
  • Psychedelic Celluloid: British Pop Music in Film and TV 1965-1974 by Simon Matthews p.174 – illustrated review
  • Rock on Film by David Ehrenstein and Bill Reed pp.71-73, 207
  • Rock-Film: In 450 film, trent'anni di Cinema & Rock by Paolo Belluso and Flavio Merkel p.159 – credits, note