‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ Is Finally Getting the Movie Adaptation It Deserves

AQOTWF 2.jpg

A new trailer for Netflix’s All Quiet on the Western Front reveals Erich Maria Remarque’s brutal war story is finally being told the way the wounded World War I veteran intended. Screenshot via YouTube.

Netflix just released the first trailer for its forthcoming film adaptation of Erich Maria Remarque’s classic World War I novel, All Quiet on the Western Front, and it looks like the streaming service is giving the literary masterpiece a brutally authentic treatment.

Brimming with shots of gritty hand-to-hand combat and a blood-soaked no man’s land, the trailer conveys the same tragic and wasteful struggle that Remarque described so vividly in his 1928 book.

AQOTWF 4.jpg

German soldiers unleash the first modern flamethrowers on French soldiers in the new trailer. Screenshot via YouTube.

The trailer opens with a quote from the novel, warning audiences that this is no flag-waving escapade, but rather a story of loss on an inconceivable scale: “This is to be neither an accusation nor a confession, and least of all an adventure, for death is not an adventure to those who stand face to face with it.”

AQOTWF 3.jpg

The newest adaptation of All Quiet on the Western Front will be available for streaming in October. Screenshot via YouTube.

The film, directed by Edward Berger, is the first-ever German-language movie adaptation of Remarque’s novel. It stars German actors Daniel Brühl (The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Inglourious Basterds) and Sebastian Hülk (Hanna, Inglorious Basterds). Hülk, who plays the story’s chief protagonist, Paul Bäumer, is seen in the trailer transforming from a naive schoolboy, eager to participate in a grand adventure, to a disillusioned survivor of a war that cost the lives of nearly 10 million soldiers. Bäumer’s transformation echoes Remarque’s, who himself was wounded while serving on the Western Front.

Previous adaptations have attempted to tell the story in all its horror, yet those films lacked the special effects technology required to convey fully the nightmarish reality Remarque described. It looks like Berger has succeeded in that regard.

The trailer is filled with horrifying scenes, showing people being roasted alive by Flammenwerfer soldiers and men drowning each other in puddles of mud on flare-lit landscapes more closely resembling a distant moon than the French countryside. It’s only two minutes long, but what it shows seems to indicate that Netflix is finally giving the so-called “greatest war novel of all time” the movie adaptation it deserves.

Read Next: Another Look at Erich Maria Remarque, Author of ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’

Mac Caltrider is a senior staff writer for Coffee or Die Magazine. He is a US Marine Corps veteran and a former police officer. Caltrider earned his bachelor’s degree in history and now reads anything he can get his hands on. He is also the creator of Pipes & Pages, a site intended to increase readership among enlisted troops. Caltrider spends most of his time reading, writing, and waging a one-man war against premature hair loss.
More from Coffee or Die Magazine
A new Marine Corps physical training uniform will have shorter shorts than previous versions, but they won’t be as short as the long-banned, skin-tight, still-beloved “silkies.”
Not enough fuel, too many miles to go over open ocean, and the aircrew was flying into a spot they call the Black Hole.
During ferocious fighting in Anzio, Italy, Harold Nelson’s commander wrote to Nelson’s mother that he’d been put in for a Silver Star. Now 107, Nelson finally got it.
After a week of competition at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, four squads will travel to Washington, DC, for the last event of the Army-wide Best Squad competition — an interview panel with Pentagon leaders, including the sergeant major of the Army.
After more than seven months of full-scale warfare, Russian gas still flows through Ukraine to Europe each day.
A fleet of US Coast Guard and Army National Guard helicopters has descended on hurricane-ravaged Sanibel Island.
About one in five C-130s in the Air Force is out of service as older C-130Hs, which were first introduced in the 1970s, are grounded to have their propellers inspected.
The aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford will spend at least one more day in Virginia.
Ford’s technological glitches included propulsion problems, hinky elevators, and gremlins in the catapults.
Francis Ford Coppola’s 1979 Vietnam War epic “Apocalypse Now” is one of the most recognizable war movies ever made, yet few fans are familiar with the insane story behind its production.