The first days of WWI. Adrien, a young and handsome lieutenant, is wounded by a piece of shrapnel. He will spend the entire wartime at the Val-de-Grâce Hospital, in Paris. Five long years, ...
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The first days of WWI. Adrien, a young and handsome lieutenant, is wounded by a piece of shrapnel. He will spend the entire wartime at the Val-de-Grâce Hospital, in Paris. Five long years, and his life will change forever... Written by
When Adrien is passing through the village there is a British 18-pounder field gun visible in the background. The British were not involved in the fighting yet at this stage. The French relied almost exclusively on their "75s" and almost certainly did not use British guns. See more »
Based upon a true story which reportedly happened to the novelist's ancestor, "la chambre des officiers" is a strong manifesto against war.The first third of the movie (before Adrien leaves his bed) strongly recalls Dalton Trumbo's masterpiece "Johnny got his gun" but with a weaker direction.The voice over ,the nurse and the visit of the secretary,not to mention the "dream" about the deer ,everything reminds me of "Johnny ..." (1971).But the movie hits its stride afterward ,and,despite of overlong sequences ,grabs the audience till the end when two wonderful sequences (the one with the little girl in the metro (=subway),then the last sequence with the woman who repeats "you're no monster")preserve the viewer from despair.
Whereas war movies have often displayed maimed soldiers,they have rarely (if they have)shown disfigured fighters.In the hospital ,we catch glimpses of the outside world only from the windows;"From a distance,one of the unfortunate victims says ,we all look the same".And when the war's over,the 11th of November 1918,the hero is the only one who does not rejoice.Because His war is not over:it has only begun.And these last sequences ,as I said above, are the most poignant of the entire movie.
"La chambre des officiers" was first a best-seller;it was written by an engineer who had never published anything before.
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