The idle son of a rich businessman joins the army when the U.S.A. enters World War One. He is sent to France, where he becomes friends with two working-class soldiers. He also falls in love... See full summary »
A group of German infantrymen of the First World War live out their lives in the trenches of France. They find brief entertainment and relief in a village behind the lines, but primarily ... See full summary »
Wealthy vintner Paul Hochen meets blonde bombshell Phyllis in a bar...and marries her. In due course, Phyllis is bored by Paul, and finds an exciting new lover in rodeo rider San. To adjust... See full summary »
Eighteen years ago, John Bolton found the man who killed his brother Joe and shot it out. The man was killed and John went to prison. His son Mike is now a college track star and when the ... See full summary »
The idle son of a rich businessman joins the army when the U.S.A. enters World War One. He is sent to France, where he becomes friends with two working-class soldiers. He also falls in love with a Frenchwoman, but has to leave her to move to the frontline. Written by
Philip Apps <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Included among the '1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die', edited by Steven Jay Schneider. See more »
The three future recruits live in New York City (one works construction on a skyscraper, another works a bar in the Bowery), but during the recruitment parade, there are shots of wide avenues lined with low buildings and palm trees - clearly shots of 1920s Los Angeles. See more »
[Melisande has just said something to him in French]
I don't understand a word you say... but I know what you mean!
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Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer gratefully acknowledges the splendid co-operation of the Second Division, United States Army and Air Service Units, Kelly Field. See more »
I noticed that some reviews referred to this as the greatest war film ever or the greatest silent or the greatest silent. Well, while this is very debatable. You could easily argue that WINGS (1927), ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT (1930) or WESTFRONT 1918 (1930) were all possibly better WWI films--but doing so does all the films a disservice. After all, can't they all be great films and who says any one of these (or another) is the greatest? And, each is amazing in its own way. Plus, how can you compare a silent to a sound film? And what about films about other wars? And what about non-war silent films?
While I could see some flaws in THE BIG PARADE, you can't really compare it to films made later (technically they were so different and the style of storytelling changed a lot over the years). This film earns a 10 relative to other films of the day--other films made about 1925 aren't any better. The film has many pluses--large and rather realistic battles that are very emotionally draining, good acting by the lead (John Gilbert's performance was relatively subdued and very effective) and the story was very touching--such as when the hero's mother sees him towards the end of the film. Sure, there are a few minuses (the love between Gilbert and Renée Adorée seemed too shallow and brief to be so strong) but they are so outweighed by the strengths that they seem petty to dwell on in this review.
Compelling and very watchable over 80 years later--this is one of the great silents.
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