Louis is a 27-year-old reservist and patriot, as is his childhood friend and longtime rival Bastien, who sees the war, like everything else, as an opportunity. One night, as their unit ...
See full summary »
Louis is a 27-year-old reservist and patriot, as is his childhood friend and longtime rival Bastien, who sees the war, like everything else, as an opportunity. One night, as their unit sleeps near the front, they're bombed. Louis and his comrades fall back in disarray and in the general panic lose their regiment. When they locate it again a few hours later, their general accuses them of desertion.
Based on a true story which seems a little implausible . The movie begins like Kubrik's classic "paths of glory" or Losey's " king and country" ;it also recalls Yves Boisset's MTV excellent effort "Le Pantalon" : a group of soldiers are accused of cowardice ,of misbehavior before the enemy and ,without even being court-martialled ,are to be shot at dusk.It would take a miracle to save them ;against all odds ,two of them survive the fire squad and then take divergent roads: the virtuous one becomes a hero,his pal does very very bad things (a brothel ,notably)
That said,I was a little disappointed by the film ;the screenplay is sometimes desultory and it would have taken ,say,the before-mentioned Yves Boisset to give the film a firm direction.The best moments are to be found in the barn,where a priest tries to "comfort" these desperate victims and on the farm,the soldiers going to battle full of innocent enthusiasm,the father losing his last two horses ("one of them limps"),the family celebrating their hero.
The movie does not really take sides ,which in a world gone mad ,is perhaps the only thing to do.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this