All Quiet on the Western Front Movie Review

It’s a pleasure to go to war in boots like these!  My they feel so – oh hell, there’s the sound of shells falling!  Hit the dirt!  This is insane!  Who’s idea was this war anyway?

One Word Movie Review: GREAT

All Quiet on the Western Front is a masterpiece about the Great War, yet not about war at all but the waste of a generation, still fresh and vivid in our memories.  We join a small band of German schoolboys caught up in the patriotic fervor of 1914, volunteering in their classroom as their teacher extorts the glory and valor of being part of the “iron men of Germany”.  We follow them into the trenches, full of rats and bloody carnage and question, like them, the pointless sacrifice of so many and the random chaos of death’s black shadow cast by ominous clouds of shells and bullets.

Based on the book by Erich Maria Remarque, this film is simply the best movie you will see all year and a lock for the Academy Award.  Whatever your position on the futility of war, this movie portrays a powerful story of courage and determination, of friendship and sacrifice under the most horrific conditions in the trenches.  The frustration of leadership, from the Kaiser down to their postman-turned-drill-officer barking useless orders is just one of many themes explored as these students see their lives shrink down to the joy of acquiring a good pair of boots to die in.

: This review is the first in a series of Ten Movies that Shook the World.  These are significant movies released during pivotal times in our past.  When they were released, the mood of the nation was receptive to change and embraced these films as stories which expressed their own feelings and emotions.  Some were surprises, some were inevitable but all were the right film for the right time in our history.

Craig Forgrave (MarketBOB)

For more insight into movies reflecting our emotions in the past, read a preview of Volume 1 of the MarketBOB Investing Through the Decades series: Investing Decades of Depression, available now.

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