A young soldier faces profound disillusionment in the soul-destroying horror of World War I. Together with several other young German soldiers, he experiences the horrors of war, such evil of which he had not conceived of when signing up to fight. They eventually become sad, tormented, and confused of their purpose.
A young German soldier's terrifying experiences and distress on the western front during World War I.
At the start of World War I, Paul Baumer is a young German patriot, eager to fight. Indoctrinated with propaganda at school, he and his friends eagerly sign up for the army soon after graduation. But when the horrors of war soon become too much to bear, and as his friends die or become gravely wounded, Paul questions the sanity of fighting over a few hundreds yards of war-torn countryside.
All Quiet on the Western Front is a television film produced by ITC Entertainment, released on November 14, 1979, starring actors Richard Thomas from The Waltons fame as Paul Baumer, and Ernest Borgnine as Katczinsky. It is based on the book of the same title by Erich Maria Remarque. The 1979 film was directed by Delbert Mann; though the acting of some of the performers was praised, the general opinion of most film fans is it failed to equal the 1930 film directed by Lewis Milestone. Nevertheless, the film has its share of tension and death, and in the spirit of the novel, manages to convey a sense of desolation, hardship and waste. Late in the film, the turmoil and wretchedness of the main character, Paul Baumer, is manifested in his extreme disassociation while home on furlough. Most of the filming was done in Czechoslovakia in what was one of the first Anglo-American produced films to be shot in a Communist Bloc country.