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A Farewell to Arms

3.4 out of 5 stars 88 customer reviews

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Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Helen Hayes
  • Directors: Frank Borzage, Gary Cooper
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio: AFA Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: April 23, 2010
  • Run Time: 78 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (88 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003J5JXWE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #963,970 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By E. Hunter Hale on February 1, 2012
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
For years this film was shown in badly duped shortened prints that did nothing to show the beauty of its Academy Award winning cinematography by Charles Lang. Kino's Blu-ray offering showcases Lang's still outstanding work in what hast to be one of director Frank Borzage's finest films. Gary Cooper and Helen Hayes are both excellent as is Adolphe Menjou. The only thing that dates this film is the music score. When the film was re-issued the newly formed censorship caused the film to be cut from 89 minutes down to 78 minutes. Many scenes had a only few seconds cut out of them while others were clipped more severely. Warner Bros. bought the rights to the Ernest Hemingway material from Paramount and re-issued the film with new main and end titles in the censored version around 1950. That edition appeared as a Laser Disc and was the first decent picture quality available for home use. Later David O. Selznick acquired the rights from WB in order to remake the film. The uncut version of the film was included in that deal. Finally Image released the full version on DVD with a somewhat weak sound track. Now with Kino's Blu-ray and DVD release the film can be seen the way it should be. While there is some print damage the overall image captures the beauty of Lang's cinematography, which is exceptional. If you enjoy classic early sound films then this is one you will want to own.
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Format: DVD
This 1932 version of A FAREWELL TO ARMS was one which Hemingway very vociferously hated. From his perspective, since it placed the romance between Frederick Henry and Catherine Barkley over his depiction of the brutality of war, he was right. However, director Frank Borzage was after something else -- a luscious, doomed wartime romance. And in this, he succeeds, brilliantly. Aided in no small part by the beautiful teaming of Gary Cooper and Helen Hayes. Hemingway later became very good friends with Cooper, whom he hand-picked to star in FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS. They were in the process of forming a company to make ACROSS THE RIVER AND INTO THE TREES and THE NICK ADAMS STORIES -- Cooper to topline both -- when they died a mere seven weeks apart in 1961.
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Format: DVD
The 1932 film version of Ernest Hemmingway's A FAREWELL TO ARMS will never challenge the likes of ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT--but while it fails to capture the horrors of World War I it is remarkably effective at capturing the novel's sparse and unyielding prose. A good deal of the credit goes to writers Garrett and Glaizer and director Borzage--but the real interest here is not so much in the cinematic interpretation of the Hemmingway novel as it is in the cast, which is remarkable.

Actress Helen Hayes was already among the leading lights of the New York stage when she was lured to Hollywood for a handful of films in the early 1930s--and it is easy to see what all the fuss was about. Plaintive beauty aside, unlike most stage and screen actors of the era she is completely unaffected in her performance and proves more than powerful enough to overcome the more melodramatic moments of the script. She is costarred with Gary Cooper in one of his earliest leading roles, and while the pairing is unexpected, it is also unexpectedly good: they have tremendous screen chemistry, and in spite of the film's dated approach they easily draw you into this story of an ill-fated wartime romance between a nurse and an ambulance driver.

The film is also well supplied with a solid supporting cast that includes Adolphe Menjou, Jack La Rue, and Mary Philips, and while clearly filmed on a slim budget--something most obvious in the battlefront sequences--the camera work is remarkably good. Unfortunately, all this counts for nothing unless you can find a print of the film that you can stand to watch.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
First off, I want to make clear that, despite what the Amazon product description for this DVD presently (on 2/27/13) indicates, this movie, in this DVD release, is 89 mins. in length, not 80. I notified Amazon of the error a short while ago, so hopefully the correction will be reflected soon.

Secondly, I wish to COMPLETELY disagree with the product review posted by BAILADORA FINA on 1/7/13. I own a KINO DVD of "A Farewell to Arms". KINO released this movie as a new HD master, NOT as a restoration. Master means a best-possible straight HD reproduction from the best available picture and audio elements. A restoration, on the other hand, is when imperfections in picture and sound are corrected, as well as is reasonably possible.

As a new HD master, I consider this KINO DVD to be excellent, with overall clear, clean picture and sound, and with nicely balanced greyscale contrast.

I realize there is a conspicuous editing jump in one place, that makes it clear some footage was snipped out at some long-ago point. (You can tell as the scene begins with Catherine's mouth finishing moving from saying something before her continuing dialog begins.) Also, there are some inconsequential instances, throughout the film, where a fraction-of-a-split-second frame or two missing is just barely evident. Those issues reflect the form the reproduced old original film copy is in. As KINO's release is a new straight HD master "from an original nitrate 35mm print, preserved by the George Eastman House Motion Picture Department," we're getting the best possible as-is reproduction of THAT copy. The KINO DVD offers clear, well-balanced, flutter-free, entirely agreeable image and sound quality, that I, for one, am fully satisfied with.
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