📼Jonathan Mike📼’s review published on Letterboxd:
“All that is left separating us from an armistice is false pride.”
Based on the one of the most important anti-war novels ever written, All Quiet on the Western Front is a brand new adaptation that just seemingly snuck up on me. There was talks for a new adaptation for years but they always seemed to fall through. And yet a trailer just showed up for it two months ago & now it’s finally out on Netflix.
Edward Berger’s All Quiet on the Western Front breathes new life into Erich Maria Remarque’s novel with an adaptation that’s poignant, brutal & horrifying. I am not kidding when I saw this is one of the most relentlessly war films I’ve seen since 1917 or maybe even Hacksaw Ridge. This film doesn’t shy way from the sheer terror and the horror of the First World War. Almost everything I read up on in history books is portrayed in horrific detail. The rats, the constant thick mud, and the outdated military techniques paired with the horrors of modern technology.
The story is fairly accurate towards the novel but also includes some real world story elements as well dealing with Matthias Erzberger (played excellently by Daniel Brühl) trying to negotiate an armistice with those who want nothing more than to keep the war afloat because of their pride. It’s a side story I thought was going to bog down the overall story but it instead it complimented the story in ways I wasn’t expecting. It’s genuinely amazing how well these stories just naturally compliment each other.
I’m sorry if this review isn’t as in-depth as my other reviews. I feel like every single element of filmmaking here is absolutely phenomenal. The writing, the direction, the acting, the set design, & even the foreboding synthy music are all perfect. Definitely one of favorite films to come put this year. This better be nominated for Best Foreign Film, hell, even a Best Picture nomination too.