From the start, the recruits are eager to get into uniform and to the front, and are puzzled by the behaviour of burned-out experienced soldiers like Tjaden and Kat. This latter, a large, pleasantly ugly man has a knack for scrounging for food and finding enough for the group, and soon, all the recruits stick with and respect this man, especially after their first bombardment. When one of the recruits realizes he has wet his trousers, Kat tells him not to worry about it, as it's happened to better men.
The stages of attacking, the bombardment, attack, counterattack, and repulse, is presented in graphic detail for that period, with the shots of men dying by artillery shells, being bayoneted, or machine-gunned. Some recruits go crazy waiting in the bunker during the bombardment, and one of them rushes outside, only to get cut down by bullets. And the aftermath isn't pretty for some. Franz Kemmerich ends up in the infirmary and has his leg amputated.Read more ›
The films leading star is Lew Ayres, and he gives a very fine performance as a German college student who enlists in the Army during the First World War, along with the other students in his class, because of the professor at the college who makes them all want to become brave soldiers. We then watch the brilliantly shot action scenes, which are very realistic and sad to watch, as they go to fight on the front lines. They certainly discover the horrors of war, while we watch it. The movie is directed by Lewis Milestone, and has a very powerful, and sad ending, that you wont forget it.
Now for this Universal Region 1 DVD. Sadly, the print and sound quality are not really too great in all honesty. However, the film is very old, and still, even if its not in the condition some might like it to be, it is still very watchable. Overall, the DVD is not too bad.
This is an absolute must-have for classic film fans. So if you can pass by the fact that the print used here on this DVD is not brilliant, you will absolutely love this movie.