Paths of Glory

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Product Overview

About the blistering reality of military politics, a young colonel must save three innocent soldiers from being framed by superiors attempting to cover up a fatal blunder.


Studio MGM
SKU 40114531
UPC 027616767424
UPC 14 00027616767424
Format DVD
Release Date 5/12/2009
Rating NR
Essential Cinema
Theatrical Release
World War I
Editors Note
Note PATHS OF GLORY is among the most powerful antiwar films ever made. The story takes place in 1916 France, as the French command orders an exhausted unit to wrest control of an anthill from the Germans--expecting a casualty rate of 60 percent. The battle--during which the Germans are never seen, indicating that the French are their own worst enemy--turns into a bloody massacre. Looking for a scapegoat, General Mireau (George Macready) orders Colonel Dax (a never-more-intense Kirk Douglas) to select three of his men to face a court-martial and possible firing squad for the troops' cowardice. Directed by Stanley Kubrick, PATHS OF GLORY, based on the novel by Humphrey Cobbs, is a gut-wrenching, unforgettable drama. Every scene is awash in grays, covered in doom. Kubrick marvelously contrasts the ornate palace where the generals sip their cognac with the ramshackle trenches where injured men stumble about, demoralized and shellshocked. Douglas gives a tough, gritty performance; his tense sparring with the high command features sharp, biting dialogue. The entire cast is outstanding; watching so many men die for no reason is maddening. Kubrick captured the Vietnam War in FULL METAL JACKET, the cold war in DR. STRANGELOVE, the Seven Years' War in BARRY LYNDON, and a slave uprising in SPARTACUS, but PATHS OF GLORY is his crowning achievement when it comes to depicting the devastation, both physical and psychological, that war wreaks on the individual--as well as the state.
Plot Summary
Summary Stanley Kubrick brings Humphrey Cobbs's scathing, fact-based antiwar novel to life with stunning results. Amid the insufferable trench warfare of WWI, a French general orders his men to attack an obviously impenetrable German position and accuses them of cowardice when the attack fails. To soothe his wounded vanity, three men are picked at random to stand trial and face the firing squad. The script was cowritten by noir author Jim Thompson.
Memorable Quotes
Quote "If the little sweethearts won't face German bullets, they'll face French ones."--General Mireau (George Macready)
Quote "There are few things more fundamentally encouraging and stimulating than seeing someone else die."--General Broulard (Adolphe Menjou) to Colonel Dax (Kirk Douglas)
Quote "Come, come Colonel Dax, don't overdo the surprise. You've been after this job from the start. We all know that, my boy."--Broulard |"I may be many things, sir, but I'm not your boy."--Dax
Quote "Would you like me to suggest what you can do with that promotion?"--Dax to Broulard
Quote "I apologize, sir, for not telling you sooner that you're a degenerate, sadistic old man, and you can go to hell before I apologize to you now or ever again!"--Dax to Broulard
Total Film "Even though Kubrick made this while still in his 20s, it is arguably his best film..." -- 5 out of 5 Stars 06/01/2000 p.102
USA Today "This is the masterpiece from Humphrey Cobb's novel that put Kubrick on the map." 11/02/2004 p.4D
Chicago Sun-Times "[T]he film by which Stanley Kubrick entered the ranks of great directors, never to leave them." 02/25/2005 p.28
Sight and Sound "PATHS remains the definitive WWI-set anti-war scorcher, much copied but never equalled, thanks largely to the bullet-train story cascade and Kubrick's relentlessly ultra-real, disarmingly composed images." 01/01/2011
Stanley Kubrick
Kirk Douglas
Adolphe Menjou
Cast & Crew
Adolphe Menjou - Actor
George MacReady - Actor
Kirk Douglas - Actor
Ralph Meeker - Actor
Richard Anderson - Actor
Wayne Morris - Actor
Humphrey Cobb - Based on Novel By
Stanley Kubrick - Director
James B. Harris - Producer
Calder Willingham - Screenplay
Jim Thompson - Screenplay
Stanley Kubrick - Screenplay
Technical Info
Original Release Date 1957
Catalog ID 907674
UPC 00027616767424
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 87 minutes
Color B&W
Original Language English
Available Audio Tracks English
Aspect Ratio
ReviewSource Austin Chronicle
Review Kirk Douglas is a god. Kubrick is a god. Together in Paths of Glory they are magnificent... This is one of those films that makes you think: They sure don't make movies like that anymore. Perhaps Spielberg can bring a bit of this in this summer's Saving Private Ryan. Perhaps Terrence Malick can show us the inhumanity of war in The Thin Red Line, but neither of them have Kirk Douglas, and that is very unfortunate. When Kirk chimes off on Adolfe Menjou, you'll understand what it's like to take a puff from your last cigarette.
Reviewer Harry Knowles
ReviewRating 0
DVD, Pan and Scan (TV Format), Spanish, Subtitled, Original, Theatrical Version, Trailers
Product Attributes
Actor Douglas,Kirk
Label Mgm Entertainment
Music Format DVD
Video Format DVD
Newsweek An unforgettable movie experience.
The Motion Picture Guide One of the greatest anti-war films ever made.
Halliwell's Film & Video Guide An overpowering piece of cinema.

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