Film 343 in the ‘1001 Films to See Before You Die’ challenge is 1925’s “The Big Parade”. Directed by King Vidor and based on Laurence Stallings’ novel entitled “Plumes”, this romantic war drama is about an idle rich boy who joins the US Army’s Rainbow Division and is sent to France to fight in World War I. He then becomes friends with two working class men, experiences the horrors of trench warfare, and finds love with a French girl. Long story short, this film was really boring to watch. Nothing interesting happened. And nothing important or noteworthy actually happened. A man who looks like the lead singer of Rammstein joined the army and falls in love with a French woman after she tied his boot laces. The text on screen didn’t help as the text started off screen and all you saw were sections of words. For example, “Slim has just enlisted” came out as “im has just enlis”. Speaking of the text on screen, some of them were just ridiculous. For example, “dog-tired”. What was wrong with saying tired? Overall, this is a film that you will forget you’ve watched as soon as you switch it off. Fun Fact – The Big Parade is one of the highest grossing silent films ever, second only to 1915’s “The Birth of a Nation”. If you have seen this film then let me know what you thought of it in the comments. Here is what I had to say while watching 1925’s “The Big Parade”
Film – The Big Parade
Year – 1925
Director – King Vidor
Written by – Harry Beh
Based On – “Plumes” by Laurence Stallings
Staring – John Gilbert, Renee Adoree, Hobart Bosworth
IMDb Rating – 8.3/10
My Rating – ZZZZzz
Length – 115 min (1h 55min)
Genre – Drama, Romance, War
Reading – All the text has been squished onto the screen
We open with Slim working on some scaffolding before getting shaved at a barbers
Slim looks like the lead singer of Rammstein
News breaks that all men must join the army
“Aren’t you thrilled that we’re going to war?” – Did you really just ask that?
Cut to a parade celebrating that America is joining World War I
I can’t read these cue cards because the text is so squished
I have no idea what’s happening
Time for army training by marching to the barracks in our suits
This blue screen tint makes it hard to see anything
So… Are we in France now?
No sleep for you tonight! You’re all digging trenches tonight!
A woman gets mad that the army are digging up her garden for a trench
“Aw, nuts!” – Is that really your reaction to all this?
“Dog-tired” – Why couldn’t it just say tired?
I can’t even read that letter
All I’ve seen that soldier do is chew tobacco with his mouth open
Time to eat cake that won’t snap in half
What’s with the rhymes while washing their clothes?
One man is sent to find a barrel so the army can make a shower out of it
Why does he have the barrel over his head?
They’ve made a shower by hanging a barrel out of a tree
Thanks for tying my bootlaces French Woman now go on a date with me