The story of two men, one married, the other the lover of the other's wife, who meet in the trenches of the First World War, and how their tale becomes a microcosm for the horrors of war.

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Maxime Desjardins ...
Maria Lazare
...
Angèle Guys ...
Angele
Maryse Dauvray ...
Mancini ...
Jean's Mother
Elizabeth Nizan
Pierre Danis
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Blaise Cendrars
Paul Duc ...
Orphan
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Storyline

The story of two men, one married, the other the lover of the other's wife, who meet in the trenches of the First World War, and how their tale becomes a microcosm for the horrors of war.

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Genres:

Drama | Horror | War

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Release Date:

25 April 1919 (France)  »

Also Known As:

J'accuse!  »

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(tinted)

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The soldiers in the March of the Dead sequence were real soldiers on leave from the front. Most of them were killed within the next few weeks. See more »

Quotes

Child #1: It's war!
Child #2: What's war?
Child #1: I don't know.
See more »

Connections

Edited into Zombie Evolution (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

Classic
25 June 2008 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

J'Accuse! (1919)

*** (out of 4)

The French masters 166-minute epic tells the story of two soldiers, Francois (Severin-Mars) and Jean (Romuald Joube), both in love with the same woman but she is married to the much older Francois but has an affair with Jean. This is very impressive film from French director Gance but I think it falls short compared to his two classic epics that would follow this one. I think this films biggest problem is its running time, which seems a tad bit too long especially a few of the talking scenes, which run on and on. On the technical side this film is nearly flawless with Gance taking the influence of Griffith and really pushing it to a new level. The most impressive thing in the film are the amazing war scenes, which are downright brilliant and they really make you feel as if you are a part of the action. The scenes with the men in the trenches contain some great atmosphere and the sense of dread runs throughout these scenes. The most famous sequence in the film, and in film history, is the "March of the Dead" sequence, which takes nearly twenty-minutes and comes towards the end of the movie. This is certainly one of the most eerie and haunting sequences in film history and the main reason this anti-war film is still remembered today. The way Gance points the finger at the folks who weren't in the war and either living it up having fun or making money off the war, comes off very creepy and the message is certainly right there on the screen. The effects used to show the dead walking are very well done and the atmosphere here is so thick that you'll feel as if you can feel them walking towards you. The performances are all very good with Mars and Joube really sticking out. As I said, I think the film runs a tad bit too long but this is still a very impressive film with one of the greatest sequences in film history.


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