AlexDavies’s review published on Letterboxd:
One of cinema’s ultimately moving war pictures, never has the grasp around your throat been so tight and harsh, Paths of Glory is one hell of a forceful realization and demonstration of a film. To wage war against the most desolate of principle-starved systems, one where sending a man to his death has lost all meaning. The fight to stay true of heart, even if only to validate your morality, a loss in battle (in life) is not a lost war. Whether the contents of your message and stand for honest truth prove in the slightest margin that a positive influence was explored and actually met in some way, why not choose to make a difference, good has no limitations.
Kirk Douglas’s performance as Col. Dax is one of the most stern and fierce things I have ever witnessed. As grueling as the intensity of the WW1’s trenches our eyes are bombarded with. Viscerally gut churning imagery. This is Kubrick’s first film where his style was truly at one with himself, Paths of Glory is where you could say he found his voice, almost cementing his visual style. Every part of the production is so well expressed, it’s tongue-tying to come up with anything to say other than that this is a potent film that every human should most likely see.