Will mankind ever evolve beyond war? What good are humanity's achievements in technology and the arts when overshadowed by the perpetual lust for war? WAR! Promised to us yesterday, today, tomorrow, and eternally.
A truly remarkable anti war movie. Photography and camera are awesome in spite of the limited possibilities. Look especially at the short sequence only showing hands around 26:00 or at some of the war scenes filmed with shadow silhouettes.
Whenever I watch a great movie, I have the feeling that I've never seen anything as interesting before. This was the impression I had while watching "J'accuse", by Abel Gance, in my opinion one of the most impressive silent movies ever made.
I enjoyed much of the film, though I'll say I grew weary of the melodramatic story that often dominated it. The movie works much better when it explores the tragedy of the war via a number of affecting editing techniques (the superimposition of dancing skeletons, the flurry of images that occur during the battle sequences, etc.)
Coming on the heels of the armistice, Abel Gance makes the first, and arguably still the greatest of all anti-war films; a sweeping epic in which everyone, including the tragic love triangle at the center, is damned from the get-go. “The Big Parade”, “All Quiet on the Western Front”, and “Paths of Glory” follow down the line, but nothing is as powerful as Gance's dancing ring of skeletons.
What a revelation! Full of melodrama and powerful imagery. The camera work is fantastic and the characters rich and sympathetic. There are absolutely astounding sequences in this film, beyond the greatness of the final scene. This film surprised me and spoke a deep dark truth about the tragedy and complications of war. Highly recommended.
Gance was good as a director before, but with J'Accuse he became a great storyteller. While it sure suffers from the Gance melodrama, it is still quite phenomenal and the greatest film about WWI of its time.
Une oeuvre fort théâtralisée d'Abel Gance qui tourna en 1938, une version parlante. Dommage que Gance appuie trop sa démonstration quant à la bêtise et l'horreur de la guerre. Et ce n'est pas l'insertion de prises de vue réellement tournées durant la Première Guerre Mondiale, ni la lecture de lettres de soldats qui sauvent le film d'un pesant accent mélodramatique presque constant.