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All quiet on the western front.
All Quiet On The Western Front (DVD)
Member Name: teafan11
All Quiet On The Western Front (DVD)
Date: 24/02/13, updated on 24/02/13 (24 review reads)
Advantages: Great insight into trench warfare.
Disadvantages: slightly dated.
All Quiet on the Western Front. 1979 version.
This is another film in my favourite film genre. This film is from a German view point of the First World War, which is an unusual stand point from a movie aspect. The film begins in Germany around 1914, and a class of teenage boys are being coerced and impelled to join the Imperial German Army and fight in the trenches. Their school master makes the boys believe in the honour and glory of the war leading them to have a false and glorified idea of trench warfare. The boys allusions of army life and war are abruptly reversed when the they start basic training and when the boys are ultimately sent to the front they are faced with the true horrors of the trenches and you as a viewer see the tremendous courage and bravery these young boys have and you also get a glimpse of the feelings they have. The stories focus is around Paul Baumer played by Richard Thomas who is famous for his role in `The Walton's` as John-Boy. You watch as this boy becomes a man and see him cope in the most unimaginable of situations. As friends are lost and battles fought this young man has to find the endurance and determination to carry on.
This film is acted well but occasionally misses the target slightly although Richard Thomas plays his role sensitively and he portrays the true harshness of war.
This is a great film that is from an unusual stand point and it makes you see the true horrors of war making you realize that both sides of the barbed wire had good men and horrendous deaths. It's very interesting to see that the impact of war was as bad for both sides, often the Germans are over looked and the hardships and horrors they suffered are not always recognised. This film faces this head on in a very direct but incisive and respectful way.
The films side effects are pretty good considering it was made in 1979 and the acting is good. The director Delbert Mann has done a great job in transplanting you back in time to experience both the heart break and the comradeship that is only present in situation of immense danger.
The film is based on the book by Erich Maria Remarque who was a German veteran of World war one. I have not read the book so cannot compare the two but it is on my to do list. If, like me, you have an interest in this genre, then I would highly recommend it. This film is dated and although todays movies have better effects, I think there is something special about the older films, they seem more unrefined and raw, but that is simply my personal opinion.
I have decided to use this as a teaching aid for my son when we start learning about the first world war because I believe that you need to teach children not simply the causes and reasons of war but the true impact on regular people on both sides. This will be of great assistance in showing my son the impact on the soldiers which will I believe give him a more realistic idea of what war is like.
The DVD is classified at PG and this seems appropriate, but I would be more careful with more sensitive children because of the sensitive nature of the story line and genre. The films main focus is about the very delicate and emotive issues of warfare, death and lose and how Paul copes with these, so I would recommend you watch the film yourself before allowing a child to watch.
I got mine from Tesco for £4.00 years ago but they are available at amazon for £4.75 with free delivery which is great value for money.
Overall I think this film is great and would definitely recommend it for anyone who has a keen interest in the wartime genre
Summary: A great film about war from the german veiw point.