With a screenplay based on Erich Maria Remarque’s immensely popular book, first published in 1929, director Edward Berger has taken on the daunting task of leading the first German team to take this story to the big screen.
It is written, directed, and portrayed by Germans, and offers a unique perspective to the war film genre: that of a country who started, and lost, two world wars, at a great cost to their own people. World War I had a devastating effect on “the lost generation” all around the world, and Germans have felt the shame, regret, and repercussions of this event for over 100 years.
This is quite possibly the most famous anti-war story, and this newest adaptation is no exception. It carries all of the intent and messaging of the author, with the sharp cutting edge of modern filmmaking techniques and visceral, immersive sound and visuals.
The film takes the biggest divergences from the previous adaptations, showing us some of the political ramifications of the war, while still keeping us intimately close with Paul and his friends who join up to go fight in the trenches with all the youthful enthusiasm of kids who grew up around war heroes.
Join us as we explore this marvel of modern cinema in all of its terrifying beauty.
Available on Netflix
Spoiler Alert: we discuss the 1929 book, the 1930 film, and the 1979 tv movie of the same title in this conversation.
Next Episode: Das Boot (1981)
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