"Paths of Glory (1957)" Movie Review Essay & Film Analysis

"Paths of Glory" - a picture, which actually began Kubrick classic. First - the film is based on the novel by Humphrey Cobb (Kubrick always had a weakness for literary sources). Secondly, the presence of an uncompromising view of things, sometimes accompanied by a brand of sarcasm and cynicism. Third, the ability to see the director of what was going on, throwing a lot of husk. Fourthly, the theme of violence, which will be explored master the entire creative life. Well, in the fifth, the film became the first anti-war trilogy director.
First World War. Proud, but was confused remnants of the former greatness of France third consecutive year, is fighting with Germany. To finally break through a stabilizing over time the front, the military leadership of the French decision about the attack at the height of 110 ( "Ant Hill"), is the key to all the German positions. Only this assault, in fact, has virtually no chance of success. The plot of the tape based on a real six-month bloodshed of 1916 in the battle of Verdun French fort Duamon, eventually occupied by the Germans.
War appears in Kubrick's not like two intersecting planes. There is a war for the highest rank of general and the war for ordinary soldiers. Both of them have very little in common. Generals - have the task to win at any cost, for the soldiers - the task of this victory at all costs to pay. Notorious "Paths of Glory" to each their own. For general they lead to honors and new posts and go through mountains of corpses of thousands of nameless soldiers. For ordinary privates importantly survive and return home. "Paths of Glory" demonstrate the immense gulf between those who give orders sometimes crazy, drinking expensive wine in luxury apartments and those who obediently fighting dirty trenches of the incessant whistling of bullets. And between them, like a grain of sand is a non-standard size in large hourglass devouring time, lost a brave Colonel Dax, for which the soldiers had not yet ceased to be of importance, especially as people, rather than consumables.
Ribbon Kubrick primarily not so much about war (it is shown passing), but about the injustices going on in the military system, in which any officer chooses to defend the slave back. And the higher the rank of each pressure on the child, in order to step to the next level, "Paths of Glory". MARSHALL directed by the chain goes from the very top - corps commander General George Brular plays on the vanity and ambition division commander General Paul Miro, offering the latter as commander of the 12th Corps
Miro in turn puts pressure on his subordinate Colonel Dax, first flattering him. and then sharply formulating the problem. General recently defending his superiors of his soldiers, and now casually counts possible interest losses from attacks. And even if it is half the personnel, a fact ceased to be important. The main thing that happened in the end figure out quite optimal. Ducks, in turn, is forced to retreat and accept. After all, he is just a link in the chain and break it can not. "Patriotism - the last refuge of a scoundrel" - sharply quoted Samuel Johnson Dax, in response to calls Miro. Recent links unbroken chain - soldiers. And there are the notorious "trails" among them. Lt. Roget, covering their cowardice and drunkenness, Corporal Paris the answers - "Have you ever tried to accuse the officer? My word against yours. And who of us believe "circle is closed, and escape from it only ran into the only incorruptible judge - an enemy bullet. Or a bullet of his own countrymen.
The gap is growing. The gloomy faces of the soldiers, doomed to certain death in the night before the offensive, to pretend to be on what will be best to die and toast General Miro in his headquarters "for France!". Ostentatious patriotism of the higher ranks and the "patriotism" of the common people who have shed their blood. Where to go and why? Who to kill and why? After all, there are the same soldiers who fought in the straps of his generals. Vague goals, unknown to ordinary soldiers poured into a simple as the enemy shot task - to grab a piece of land, which by and large do not need anyone. And in such cases, a sense of self-preservation inherent in the person often triggered much earlier than the "patriotism".
"They are afraid of the German bullets, will receive the French." Kubrick shows the futility of establishing justice even in some cases. Narrowly escaped death three soldiers are again in mortal danger. Behind the explosions and imprinted in the brain crackle of machine guns. But now death threatens their already in the form of a demonstration, and to give the tribunal a farce. From rotten bureaucrats and office rats, to sit in the rear.
Kubrick immediately puts everything in its place. The scene takes place in the castle court, half of which resembles a chessboard. This kind of castling, when covering the main figures, pawn sacrifice. Judicial patterns underscore the tragedy and hopelessness of the situation - "The indictment is too long and there is no point in reading it." And after the sentence, which was not able to challenge the still Dax, when three suicide in despair, waiting for their fate, again directed by one frame emphasizes the hopelessness of a common soldier, landed in the millstones of history. Medium shot showing a cockroach crawling on the table. One of the soldiers with hatred declares: "This cockroach is more likely to get to my wife and child than I am." Second kills the insect with his hand and answered - "Now there is." Kubrikovskaya corrosive satire. The scene being shot, cynical in its inhumanity echoes in the ears of those who are lucky this time. Kubrick as a philosopher categorical - you lucky today, but tomorrow it may not carry
last scene as the hushed calm before the storm in the short period of time.. Soldiers in an hour-deserved rest and drink fun. Before so great a death should be thoroughly entertained for a while to forget the death of their comrades. And has appeared before the audience captive German girl - "spoils of war" - only whet the drunken crowd. But Kubrick is not repeated the shocking scene of Sholokhov's "And Quiet Flows the Don". Dirty and ragged soldiers were fascinated listening to a ballad about love and war "Devotee soldiers", some singing along, some crying. At this point home favorite and native people are getting a little closer. To a few moments to leave again deep into the memory, drowned out by the sounds of drums and military music.
fatalist Kubrick, like the death of a youth in a newfangled horror film originally droppings all future suicide prepares his "path of glory." For some, it will be through the new orders, for someone a hero's death, someone will escape from things happening around hell to some years to forget the horror of the war already in the face of a ruthless new. And go to these "paths" all destined to end. As generals and ordinary soldiers. History, which need to adhere puts everything in its place, there will be powerless. All distribute a merciless fate seen through the black-and-white film picture of American director.

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