Taglines: In this frightening time one man makes a difference.
An enigmatic swordsman named Nomad (Patrick Swayze), wanders through the desert in a post-World War III world. He searches for his mentor’s killer, the assassin Sho (Christopher Neame). The war itself is never described, but there are hints that a new government rose soon afterwards, though it has lost power since.
In the past, Nomad had a position of privilege as a soldier of the elite guard. Since firearms are no longer available, edged weapons have been revived as the standard fighting tools. The elite guard mastered the use of swords and carried them in an unusual, upright fashion. Nomad’s family were, in some way, killed and this continues to torture him.
Nomad runs into a group of settlers in the town of Meridian. Damnil (Anthony Zerbe), a local landowner, and his gang are attacking the town to gain a monopoly on the local water supply. Nomad stays at a local farm owned by the widow Kasha (Lisa Niemi). She has a son named Jux, who quickly endears himself to Nomad. Kasha reveals to Nomad that she has an endless source of pure water under her land and plans to eventually irrigate the whole valley.
Nomad teams up with Kasha’s foreman, Tark (Brion James), to oppose Damnil and his bullying tactics. Meanwhile, Nomad and Kasha’s relationship becomes romantic. Sho and some of Damnil’s men show up in town, leading to Sho and Nomad having a brutal staff fight. Tark gets in the way and is stabbed in the abdomen by Sho and dies. Jux is kidnapped by Damnil’s men.
Steel Dawn is a 1987 American post-apocalyptic science fiction action film that mixes the genres of science fiction and western. It stars Patrick Swayze and his wife, Lisa Niemi. The working title was Desert Warrior. Principal photography took place in Dead Vlei, Namib-Naukluft Park, Namibia.
Steel Dawn (1987)
Directed by: Lance Hool
Starring: Patrick Swayze, Lisa Niemi, Christopher Neame, Brett Hool, Brion James, Anthony Zerbe, John Fujioka, Arnold Vosloo, Russel Savadier, Tullio Moneta
Screenplay by: Doug Lefler
Production Design by: Alex Tavoularis
Cinematography by: George Tirl
Film Editing by: Mark Conte
Costume Design by: Poppy Cannon-Reese
Set Decoration by: Lindy Steinman
Art Direction by: Hans Van der Zanden
Music by: Brian May
Distributed by: Vestron Pictures
Release Date: November 6, 1987