Road Rash Reviews

PATHS OF GLORY (Masters of Cinema) Special Edition 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray Review

Cert PG | 88 mins | 1957

5 Star

A Mountain out of an Ant Hill

This highly controversial Anti-War film was co-written and directed by Stanley Kubrick (2001: A Space Odyssey, Full Metal Jacket, The Killing), based on the novel of the same name by Humphrey Cobb (San Quentin). Kubrick made this film aged just twenty-eight, and he paints a vivid portrait of the futility of the slaughter of men during WWI. In 1992 this film was deemed “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant”, and selected for preservation for future audiences. Now in 4K, this is definitely one to own. Paths of Glory is a testament to Kubrick’s genius.

The French army is against the Hun, fighting across the no-man’s land where a hundred yards gain may take 100,000 men. It is 1916 and stalemate is now established, hard decisions have to be made and it is the generals who are going to make them, and this is the job Colonel Dax, (Kirk Douglas, Spartacus) is charged with: “Take the Ant Hill”.

The Ant Hill has been occupied by the Germans for a long time, and they are well dug-in with machine guns trained across no-mans-land, which is pot marked with artillery craters and each sides’ mangled barbed wire.

Gen. George Broulard (Adolphe Menjou, A Star Is Born, Stage Door) charges Gen. Paul Mireau (George Macready, Tora! Tora! Tora!, The Great Race) to take the Ant Hill, to which he says it is impossible, but when a promotion for taking the hill is put in the mix Mireau soon changes his tune, and that means Mireau will leave the planning of the attack to Colonel Dax (Kirk Douglas, Man Without a Star, A Letter To Three Wives, Champion, The Vikings).

To put it mildly, Dax is not pleased with this decision, but he is a man of learning, and he knows his place in the chain of command. He will lead the charge against the fortified Hill.

He leads his men over-the-top and across no-mans-land, they are cut to bits by enemy fire and artillery, as Mireau watches from a dugout. He criticizes that one of the battalions is still in the trenches and he tries to take drastic action.

This all leads to dire consequences.

Paths of Glory is definitely a film that should be seen, and now on 4K it looks and sounds amazing, this is one for the top shelf.

Paths of Glory is available on 4K Blu-ray



Limited edition O-Card slipcase featuring new artwork by Scott Saslow | 4K (2160p) UHD Blu-ray presentation, presented in Dolby Vision HDR from a 4K scan of the original camera negative | Audio commentary with film scholar Adrian Martin | Video interview with Kubrick scholar Peter Kramer | Video interview with filmmaker Richard Ayoade | Interview with critic / author Richard Combs | Optional English SDH | Original theatrical trailer | Isolated music & effects track | PLUS: A collector’s booklet featuring writing by Glenn Kenny and Colin Young, illustrated with archival imagery


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DirectorStanley Kubrick
GenreDrama, War
StarringKirk Douglas, Ralph Meeker, Adolphe Menjou, George Macready, Wayne Morris