All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
All Quiet on the Western Front
They left for war as boys never to return as men.
A young soldier faces profound disillusionment in the soul-destroying horror of World War I. Together with several other young German soldiers, he experiences the horrors of war, such evil of which he had not conceived of when signing up to fight. They eventually become sad, tormented, and confused of their purpose.
Film #1 of Project 30
”When it comes to dying for your country it’s better not to die at all.”
It’s really amazing that this 84 year old film’s messages and its viewpoints regarding war and its effects on human soul feel so fresh and modern even now. Lewis Milestone’s adaptation of Eric Maria Remarque’s novel of the same name is an absorbing, tantalizing and incredibly affective piece of cinema which focuses on a group of naive German boys who go to the ugly battlefields of World War I and it shows how anguish, misery and sorrow replaces all their energy, passion and enthusiasm for life and how their courage, valor and heroism soon turns into silence, depression and despair.…
There are a dozen or so legendary films in the history of cinema that live up to their billing, and then some. This is certainly one of them. It's so defiantly timeless, and also makes you somewhat wonder why people even bothered making war films ever since.
As a result of the 100th year commemorations of WWI which are currently underway, I finally decided to seek this film out and polish it off. It is one of those films you often hear about a long time before you get around to seeing it, it features prominently in the history of early cinema, particularly the early era of the Oscars. The film title itself is pure pop-culture, to the point of…
Okay, so some of the acting is a little stilted at times, but the earnestness helps to endear the characters and All Quiet on the Western Front packs in so much film-making virtuosity and naturalism for an 83 year old film that it hasn't aged for a second. The war scenes are astounding with realism and mortifying with truth. The camera so composed, always in the right spot, so still and picturesque with haunting reserve at times. The framing often reveals detail in the background as the foreground carries on with story. There is always more than one action going on in every shot, always commanding full attention. The anit-war message is ever-lasting in every sense of the word. A phenomenal piece of work that has stood the test of time as well as anything.
We know, first hand, that the First World War was a nasty, ugly and brutal experience. That's true of any war, but this one was different because of the magnitude of new technology. The tank premiered, and made it possible to get across enemy lines into places that soldiers on foot could never go. Most importantly, the motion picture camera, which captured moving images of war for the very first time. It was the first war to have documentation of the actual event and record interviews with survivors who could tell the story of the Hell they endured. All Quiet on the Western Front, like the book,sugarcoats nothing. It charges headlong into battle in an effort to portray a war…
A half hour into this, around the time the second hysterical soldier cries like a baby, I'm ready to condemn it for being unrealistic. And that's when I realize it's just my American conditioning kicking in. Having recently watched American Sniper (review forthcoming), All Quiet On The Western Front is about as lucky a counterpoint as I could have hoped for. A film like this just couldn't be made today; lately it seems the American military must be a rock-solid bastion of masculinity at all times, and it's insane to think how many war films made in Hollywood tread this same purloined path of self-righteous bravado.
Eighty-five years later and this is one of the greatest war films ever made.…
Goes to show how a second viewing can make a big difference. I'd been of the opinion this was creaky and boring, the kind of movie that would have been better as a silent movie a year or so earlier. I was an idiot for thinking this. It's just as visually dynamic as most silents, and the sound gives it a naturalism that suits the material infinitely better. Devastating.
"Every day a year and every night a century"
Young men dying for old men's gain.
What blew me away about this film was the outstanding production that was evident from the opening moments. Lewis Milestone gets a lot of mileage out of wide compositions, sometimes shot through a window or doorway like he's giving us an inside look at the real deal. This is quite an unsentimental portrait of war and no matter the intro, it can't help but feel like a condemnation of war in general as the conjuring of comfortable people sitting aways away. The parts that don't work revolve around the soldiers talking too much speechifying about war and motivations that makes you realize just how…
I simply can't believe it - this movie was made in 30s and still has the best depictions of trench-warfare (in regards of psychological and physical realism). And effects are still better then every CGI-shitfest we see today. Atmosphere is also superb (though there are too many characters that don't get enough development and it's not easy to remember who is who) and, basically, it shows everything an anti-war movie should show. Though classic "goofy" acting spoils it a bit.
Also surprisingly depressing and violent for a war movie coming out of country of freedom and burgers.
Some brilliant set pieces, but the very dated performances and the often simplistic dialogue kept getting in the way for me.
Probably most notable for being the first film to ever win both Outstanding Production and Best Director at the Academy Awards, All Quiet on the Western Front finally made its way into my DVD player last month.
Last year, I got hold of a pre-release copy of the restored documentary Forgotten Men, which was released three years after Lewis Milestone’s award laden movie, but dealt with a similar concept. Whereas All Quiet… follows a group of young German soldiers who enlist to help protect “the Fatherland” full of enthusiasm and naivety, but soon learn the harsh realities of war in the trenches, Forgotten Men featured interviews with veterans of the Great War. What both share in common is strong anti-war…
Not all of the melodrama holds up, but the message does - it's as relevant now as it was 85 years ago. This film captures not just the horror of war (though it does capture that), but the monotony and the soul-crushing despair. In a genre of film that suffers in America from an abundance of rah-rah jingoism, here's a film that casts our "enemies" as the protagonists and forces us to relate to them, and it shows that in war, whether it be "good" or "bad", the winners and losers are usually comfortable at home, not the people in the trenches.
There's something about this depiction that makes it the definitive war film in my mind. It's got all the aspects of war that late films delve into and yet All Quiet encompasses them all so holistically with equal examination and respect. It's a film that exists beyond its time, a true classic sharing the timeless qualities of other early greats, I'm so happy that I got to check it out on the big screen in the form it was intended (not that I think a smaller screen would diminish the quality of the film). The power of the film wasn't immediately clear as the light somewhat comedic approach slowly unfurls but sure enough it sinks into a dark bleak onslaught…
Featuring some of the most complex and exciting filmmaking of its time but tempered by the stilted dialogue and overuse of close-ups that characterise a cinema in transition, All Quiet on the Western Front is uneven. This isn't to say that the interactions between the soldiers are much less than moving or that the pre-code naughtiness isn't entertaining. It's simply hard to equal the soaring crane shots that look down on the trenches or that iconic final shot. Perhaps this film would have been better had it been made a couple of years earlier. The dialogue could have been boiled down to a couple of basic intertitles leaving the remaining imagery more space to speak for itself.
"And our bodies are earth. And our thoughts are clay. And we sleep and eat with death."
The greatest war film of all time. Every film maker contemplating a war film should ask themselves: "Am I going to say anything that has not already been said in All Quiet? And the answer is most likely to be no. So they should make something else.
Two word review: Great tragedy
Wow. Just amazing, brutal and unflinching.
Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!