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All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)

Passed | | Drama, War | 24 August 1930 (USA)
A German youth eagerly enters World War I, but his enthusiasm wanes as he gets a firsthand view of the horror.

Director:

Lewis Milestone

Writers:

Erich Maria Remarque (by), Maxwell Anderson (adaptation) | 3 more credits »
Won 2 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Louis Wolheim ... Kat
Lew Ayres ... Paul (as Lewis Ayres)
John Wray ... Himmelstoss
Arnold Lucy ... Kantorek
Ben Alexander ... Kemmerich (as Kemmerick)
Scott Kolk ... Leer
Owen Davis Jr. ... Peter
Walter Rogers ... Behn (as Walter Browne Rogers)
William Bakewell ... Albert
Russell Gleason ... Mueller
Richard Alexander ... Westhus
Harold Goodwin ... Detering
Slim Summerville ... Tjaden (as 'Slim' Summerville)
G. Pat Collins ... Bertinck (as Pat Collins)
Beryl Mercer ... Paul's Mother
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Storyline

This is an English language film (made in America) adapted from a novel by German author Erich Maria Remarque. The film follows a group of German schoolboys, talked into enlisting at the beginning of World War 1 by their jingoistic teacher. The story is told entirely through the experiences of the young German recruits and highlights the tragedy of war through the eyes of individuals. As the boys witness death and mutilation all around them, any preconceptions about "the enemy" and the "rights and wrongs" of the conflict disappear, leaving them angry and bewildered. This is highlighted in the scene where Paul mortally wounds a French soldier and then weeps bitterly as he fights to save his life while trapped in a shell crater with the body. The film is not about heroism but about drudgery and futility and the gulf between the concept of war and the actuality. Written by Michele Wilkinson, University of Cambridge Language Centre, <mw125@cus.cam.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When a picture bares the soul of an individual it is great, when it bares the soul of a generation it is TREMENDOUS and here is a TREMENDOUS human document. The heart-hitting story of youth face to face with disillusion and decay...the drama of simple emotions magnified by their very intensity into the most moving ideas ever pictured! You've seen the heroic, the colorful side of war screened many times. Now see the HUMAN side in this amazingly faithful talking picturization of the world's greatest story! See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the American Film Institute's 2001 list of 400 movies nominated for the top 100 Most Heart-Pounding American Movies. See more »

Goofs

When Paul talks to the dead soldier in the pit, the soldier is breathing visibly and at one point his eyes blink. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Man cleaning doorknob: Thirty thousand.
Maid: From the Russians?
Man cleaning doorknob: No, from the French. From the Russians we capture more than that every day.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Later reissues of the film mentioned that the film was an Academy Award winner in the opening credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

The cover for the 2002 Norwegian VHS by Basic Publishing states that the film runs for 130 minutes. However, the film itself is actually heavily cut, running for only approximately 98 minutes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Beginning of the End (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

All Quiet on the Western Front
(1930) (uncredited)
Music by Lou Handman
Lyrics by Bernie Grossman
See more »

User Reviews

 
WW! from a German soldier's viewpoint
13 December 2016 | by dfwesleySee all my reviews

I was in high school when I first saw this great war film and I am now a senior, senior, citizen and have seen it a few more times. ALL QUIET remains right at the top of my list of outstanding war pictures. Here was a unique depiction of life in the trenches from an enemy point of view, a novel approach.

Lew Ayres gives a memorable performance as Paul Baumer, the sensitive German soldier, and has a fine supporting cast. The vivid battles in the trenches remain in my thought, and though they lack the technological know how of today, are indelible.

One of the most touching scenes is when Baumer kills the Frenchman in the shell hole and remorse overcomes him. Another tragic part is when his buddy is dying in the hospital and is visited by his comrades. A lighter scene is when the company has an over abundance of food due to its losses and the men become satiated. They are so comfortable that they are inclined to philosophize about the causes of war and its solution.

When Paul loses his friend, his depression grows and his death at the hands of a sniper is a fitting end to it all. The remake, with Ernest Borgnine, was satisfactory, but could not approach the quality of the original which I often find to be true.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | German | Latin

Release Date:

24 August 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

All Quiet on the Western Front See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut) | (BBFC submission before censorship) | (restored) | (copyright length) | (DVD) | (TV)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)| Silent (synchronized music score)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

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