The film Paths of Glory (1957) is of the few mainstream Hollywood movies of the century to espouse a contrarian theme. While many films of the period talked of issues and the drama surrounding war, Paths of Glory went a step further and made an emphatic statement about the nature and contradictions of war. The anti-war stance of the film was a risk both in terms of commercial logic and public sentiment. But its creators bravely took that risk and pulled off an impressive outcome. This essay will argue that, despite the modest box office success of the film, it is a major critical, cultural and cinematic success due to the bold portrayal of contrarian themes.
Stanley Kubrick’s Paths of Glory is a unique film, not only in terms of the strong anti-war message, but also in the manner in which it was conveyed. Based on a novel by Humphrey Cobb of the same name, the film is set during the First World War and stars Kirk Douglas (Colonel Dax) in the lead . . . Read More