All Quiet on the Western Front (2022)

All Quiet on the Western Front (2022)

2022 R 147 Minutes

Action | Drama | War | History

Paul Baumer and his friends Albert and Muller, egged on by romantic dreams of heroism, voluntarily enlist in the German army. Full of excitement and patriotic fervour, the boys enthusiastically mar...

Overall Rating

6 / 10
Verdict: Good

User Review

  • WHAT I LIKED: "War isn't worth it," is the one obvious sentiment that almost all war movies carry, particularly those about the barbaric, senseless battle along the Western front of World War 1.

    What sets such films apart is the way they tell their story, and Edward Berger's remake of 'All Quiet on the Western Front,' chooses to simply broadcast the horrors in their most numbingly gruesome detail whilst occasionally cutting to the rich fat cats making the decisions that put the soldiers in that hell.

    That's successful in showcasing the age-old message because the hell is so well realised thanks to numerous gory details, sweeping shots of perfectly relentless sets, and close-ups of men gutted by the horrors they've witnessed. That, especially when cut against the palatial mansions of the German decision-makers, makes for some often visceral, harrowing viewing.

    WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: Some of the production choices do take you out of it, as not only do many of the shots and scenes linger long after they've made their points, but some appear almost glossy, and Volker Bertelmann's score is frankly bizarre.

    The bigger shortfall of the film however is that it has little more to offer than its realisation of the environment as a thematic point. The characters get little to no exploration beyond their introduction to the battlefield as we simply follow them at various points throughout the war, and the camera and script does little to encourage us to wonder more about them or explore their emotional journey. Without much of a character to follow, there's not really a central drive behind the narrative either, and that means whilst your eyes may be hooked by the horrors, you won't find yourself engaged on a particularly emotional level.

    VERDICT: 'All Quiet on the Western Front,' is nothing more and nothing less than a perfectly awful realisation of the horrors of World War 1.