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Farewell to Arms: Kino Classics Edition [Blu-ray]

3.5 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Gary Cooper, Helen Hayes
  • Directors: Frank Borzage
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio: Kino Lorber films
  • Release Date: Dec 20 2011
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B005SDB8JQ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #56,333 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Product Description

A tale of the love between ambulance driver Lt. Henry (Cooper) and Nurse Catherine Barkley (Hayes) during World War I. The action takes place in Italy and the two fall in love during the war and will stop at nothing to be together. The film also analyses Lt. Henry's feelings on war and the purpose of fighting.

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The 1932 version of A Farewell to Arms owes as much to the shimmering house style of Paramount Pictures as it does the novel by Ernest Hemingway. If Hemingway purists can get past the romanticizing of the book, however, this film offers its own glossy appeal. On the Italian front in World War I, an American ambulance driver (Gary Cooper) falls in love with a nurse (Helen Hayes, before she became the official First Lady of the American The-a-tah). Cooper was a Hemingway friend in real life, and later played the hero of Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls; his boyish simplicity is just right for director Frank Borzage's heartfelt approach. Image Entertainment's DVD release is a stunningly gorgeous improvement on the muddy prints of this film that had been circulating for years, a fitting tribute to the Oscar-winning cinematography of ace cameraman Charles Lang (this is the kind of lush black and white that can capture the glow from a cigarette as it plays across Cooper's darkened face--a breathtaking touch). The jaded battle scenes show the influence of the hit film version of All Quiet on the Western Front, especially in a gripping montage depicting Cooper's progress alone through the war zone. Hemingway would have none of it, of course; he once disdainfully wrote that "in the first picture version Lt. Henry deserted because he didn't get any mail and then the whole Italian Army went along, it seems, to keep him company." This is first and foremost a love story, however, and as such it succeeds beautifully, right through to the remarkably intense ending. --Robert Horton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Frank Borsage's 1931 film version of Ernest Hemingway's "A Farewell to Arms" can never have the power of the novel's prose, and its not-quite-so-simple romantic idyll. I first saw the film as a twelve-year old in 1931, when it was released; but I've reread the novel many times, and have seen the film twice in recent years. I am a veteran of World War II and a retired professor of literature. So I can now see AFTA through the eyes and sensibilities of a hopefully more seasoned, if not cynical, old man. In '31, I was too young to "get" the implications of war's tragedy (even though my boyhood was saturated with stories and films about "the Great War"--"All Quiet on the Western Front--the novel & the film--What Price Glory--the play & the film--the 1927 Seventh Heaven with Charles Farrell and Janet Gaynor co-starring, too young--in that earlier age of innocence--to know how babies were made). Now I am touched by Frederick Henry's (not-so)"innocent" affair with Nurse Cathrine Barkley, touched by its initial idyllic quality. But in 1931, I had not read AFTA. Hardly! Or if read would I have understood it. But decades later, I can now see the lacunae, the holes & telescopings and elidings of vital scenes in the novel, one being the couple's "alpine idyll" above Montreux, Switzerland, the row across the lake to Switzerland (which Catherine shares, but not in the film), and which may have contributed to the complications of her baby's still-birth and her own death by loss of blood. Finally, that silly Hollywood ending, with Cooper (an otherwise good performance considering the pre-Method time)picking up Catherine from her (death) bed, murmuringm "Peace! Peace!" to the skies beyond the open window,as bells toll the war's end.Read more ›
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Format: DVD
A Frank Borzage production that is based on a novel by Ernest Hemingway, this is a story of the love between ambulance driver Lieutenant Henry (Gary Cooper) and Nurse Catherine Barkley (Helen Hayes) during World War I. the story is made complex by the interference of Major Rinaldi (Adolphe Menjou.)

"Disaster as well as victory is written for every nation on the record of the World Ware, but high on the rolls of glory two names are inscribed -- --
The Marne and the Piave."

This is a real tearjerker in black and white. However, it is well made and the story keeps movie. We can even feel sorry for the misguided friendship of Major Rinaldi, which contributed greatly to the disaster in the story.

I was really struck by seeing the young Helen Hayes as the first time I saw her was on Airport (1970.)

The Fountainhead ~ Gary Cooper
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Format: DVD
A Frank Borzage production that is based on a novel by Ernest Hemingway, this is a story of the love between ambulance driver Lieutenant Henry (Gary Cooper) and Nurse Catherine Barkley (Helen Hayes) during World War I. the story is made complex by the interference of Major Rinaldi (Adolphe Menjou.)

"Disaster as well as victory is written for every nation on the record of the World War, but high on the rolls of glory two names are inscribed -- --
The Marne and the Piave."

This is a real tearjerker in black and white. However, it is well made and the story keeps movie. We can even feel sorry for the misguided friendship of Major Rinaldi, which contributed greatly to the disaster in the story.

I was really struck by seeing the young Helen Hayes as the first time I saw her was on Airport (1970.)

The Fountainhead ~ Gary Cooper
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Format: DVD
Based on Ernest Hemingway's semi-autobiographical novel about an ambulance driver and a nurse in WWI, this is a beautifully filmed and acted tragic romance, between tiny Helen Hayes, and tall, lanky Gary Cooper, who was 31 at the time and so handsome.
The chaos that surrounds the relationship makes all the participants (including Cooper's best friend, played by Adolphe Manjou) act in ways that are misguided, causing more misfortune, and furthering the anguish of the plot; the chemistry between the stars is wonderful and believable though, and despite its bleakness it is still a tender love story.
There are hellish scenes of war, set to Wagnerian musical themes, and there is an ominous mood that prevails in every scene, even when Cooper and Menjou are out on a drunken spree.
The restoration of this film is excellent, doing justice to Charles Lang's Oscar winning cinematography; the film also won for Best Sound, as well as being nominated for Best Picture.
There have been more recent versions of this story; the 1957 "A Farewell to Arms" with Jennifer Jones and Rock Hudson (which I have not seen), and the 1996 film "In Love and War" with Sandra Bullock and Chris O'Donnell which also has a similar theme, because it was based on Hemingway's youthful WWI romance with nurse Agnes Von Kurowsky; that film suffers because of a weak connection between its actors however, and despite its age, this is a much better film.
Total running time 80 minutes.
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By A Customer on Nov. 15 2001
Format: VHS Tape
Paramount finished 1932 with a high note with A FAREWELL TO ARMS. Ernest Hemingway's best-seller, his first novel to be filmed, had the rich assets of direction by Frank Borzage, a specialist in love stories with a touch of tragedy (i.e., Fox's SEVENTH HEAVEN (1927) & THREE COMRADES (M-G-M, 1938). The performances of both Helen Hayes (she wasn't quite considered the First Lady of the Theatre yet) and Gary Cooper were excellent; particularly that of Hayes; she was never more impressive in a film than she is here, as the English nurse in war-swept Italy. Cooper underacts with feeling, and also finds rewarding material in the role of an American ambulence officer caught up in a difficult love affair. The Oliver H.P. Garrett-Benjamin Glazer screenplay softened the book's ending (in which the nurse died with an unborn child-no improvement artistically but pleasing to 1932 audiences). Adolphe Menjou stands out in a supporting cast which includes Jack LaRue, Blanche Frederci and Henry Armetta. Its technical excellence garnered an AA each for sound recording (Harold C. Lewis) and for best cinematography (Charles B. Lang). Later remakes were done in 1951 (FORCE OF ARMS, Warners) and in 1957 under the original title (David O. Selznick produced, Rock Hudson and Jennifer Jones starred) were both dismal failures in comparison.
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