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The Road Back  /  Johnny Got His Gun

Johnny Got His Gun
December 9, 2016 - 7:30 pm

Restored by the Library of Congress in association with UCLA Film & Television Archive, Universal Studios, and The Film Foundation.  Restoration funding provided by The Film Foundation and the Library of Congress.

The Road Back  (1937)

Based on Erich Maria Remarque’s eponymous novel, a group of German infantrymen experience the Armistice and return home, where they find the growing shadow of authoritarian rule.  Director James Whale, who experienced World War I first hand in the trenches of the British Army, saw his uncompromising pacifist film watered down after the Nazi Consulate in Los Angeles complained.  This restoration by Universal Studios includes for the first time many scenes that the company had eliminated in the 1939 release version.

35mm, b/w, 97 min.  DIR: James Whale.  SCR: Charles Kenyon, R.C. Sheriff.  CAST: John King, Richard Cromwell, Slim Summerville.

Johnny Got His Gun  (1971)

A young American soldier is hit by an incoming mortar shell on the last day of World War I and wakes up in a hospital, a quadruple amputee, who has also lost his eyes, mouth and ears.  He struggles to communicate with the world outside his imagination, finally learning to tap messages in Morse code with his head.  Based on Trumbo’s best-selling novel, this was Dalton Trumbo’s first and last directorial effort after being blacklisted, winning two prizes at the Cannes Film Festival. 

Blu-ray, b/w & color, 111 min.  DIR/SCR: Dalton Trumbo.  CAST: Timothy Bottoms, Marsha Hunt, Jason Robards.