Farewell to arms (1932)

Welcome to another movie review by yours truly.  The film I aim to review today is one called ‘Farewell to arms’, made in 1932, it is a fairly old movie detailing events in the First World War.  As it is from 1932, you can expect it to be in black and white, so if you don’t like those old classics and black and white movies then this is not for you!  Again like my previous reviews, I will try not to spoil too much, but it will be difficult!

The film appears to show some very clear anti-war feelings, how war tears love apart, and how dangerous it was to love in such a time.  It focuses around the fighting between Austria and Italy, and especially around the medical core, between a nurse and a frontline medic.  They are forbidden to enter a relationship but do so anyhow, which leads to difficulties and eventually ensures that she has to go to Switzerland and for him to desert the army and focus on finding her.  It shows the implications war has on a personal life, that each life would have been so different if the war had never started.  The film highlights the problems everyone faces with war, and that no one can never not be affected.

The movie deals with issues such as censorship and the horrors of the First World War.  The medic, gets injured miles behind the front line, suggesting that no one is really safe in the war.  His position was shelled, and somehow he survived.  Medics were supposed to be free from the killing, but as the war got desperate, they were also targeted.  The film shows that each job in the war was potentially hazardous.

The movie also deals of those loosing loved ones in the fighting, with the nurse loosing her fiancé at the Battle of the Somme, which was in 1916.  It is hard not to imagine that her life could have been so different if it wasn’t for the war.  She regrets not marrying the man, as he was taken from her in 1916 at the Somme.  She also shows the naivety of those when war was declared, believing he may be injured, like a bullet in the shoulder, but that he wouldn’t actually be killed, in such a gruesome way as he was. It is interesting to note that the film was not shown in Australia for some time, the same goes for the original book that this was made from.  The author Hemingway had great difficulty with censorship at the time.  However, Hemingway also disliked the 1932 version of his book, believing it focused too much of the romantic side of things, rather than as a story of an ambulance driver in WW1.

To conclude, the film shows the difficulties of having a relationship during WW1, it also shows the problems with censorship and of course the rules and regulations of nurses.  However, the film, although enjoyable seemed to leave me sad, and I will say, do not expect a happy ending!  Now I do apologise for such a short post this time, but I do recommend you do see this film, and tell me your own opinions of what the films represents and shows.

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