All Quiet on the Western front is a World War I drama made in 1930, starring Lewis Ayres. The plot is of a young German solider, who is physically and mentally destroyed by the catastrophic horrors of war.
The story is very revealing and ingenious, for it portrays the ridiculous propaganda that is used to coax the youth of Germany into becoming soldiers. Pictures are painted, songs are sung, and stories are told. The main character, Paul , soon finds out that all these songs and stories are lies. He is not a hero. He is one out of the many people in the Army. He watches all of his friends and enemies drop like flies. The movie ends during his spiral into madness, when he is shot just like all of the people he knew, he is just another casualty and no one cares.
WHAT I THINK: The story was in fact a fantastic portrayal of the human thought process, but with that said, I think the acting was very dramatic. Realistic acting makes or breaks a movie. Also, even though it was an anti-war film, the battle scenes were extremely romanticized. A key factor the movie didn’t have was the ability to make the audience come to the conclusion that war is 100% terrible. The potential heart-wrenching scenes left a little something to be desired.
With that being said, when all those factors are considered, in my opinion this movie gets a generous 7 1/2 stars. My final say is that the lack of great acting separates this movie from other great movies.