Prior to all the postmodern goofiness and Peter Sellers antics of Dr. Strangelove, and before all the memorably absurd verbal lashings of Full Metal Jacket, Stanley Kubrick had already tackled modern warfare with a whole mess of poignancy and gorgeous tracking shots. In Paths of Glory, his 1957 adaptation of the novel by Humphrey Cobb, Kubrick delivers a grim and glamor-free depiction of French troops occupying the western front in World War I. It is hailed as the most true-to-life portrayal of trench warfare on film, although the movie’s most powerful antiwar sentiments—and there are many—are best revealed through the trial of three soldiers sentenced to death on charges of cowardice, and the personal crusade of Kirk Douglas’s Colonel Dax to save their lives. David Simon, the journalist/producer who created HBO’s The Wire and Treme, will introduce the film before the screening.
Mon., Sept. 20, 7:40 p.m., 2010
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 8, 2010