1914, enthusiastic student Gilbert Demachy (Pierre Blanchar) joins his countrymen to fight the Germans. Gilbert bonds with the rest of his fellow soldiers as the company constantly loses men, regroup and moves on, leaving their fallen friends comrades behind.
Le Croix de Bois/Wooden Crosses was widely hailed at the time of its release in 1932 for its searing depiction of the horrors of the front during World War I and the director Raymond Bernard was named soldier of honour of the 39th Infantry Division.
Adapted from a novel by Roland Dorgelès (a former corporal of the 39th) with the entire cast is comprised of war veterans the film offers a kaleidoscope of cinematographic techniques to present a visceral, enveloping recreation of one regiment’s experience of battlefield horrors.
From a gorgeous new Pathé restoration carried out for the centenary for the start of the Great War, Raymond Bernard’s Le Croix de Bois/Wooden Crosses retains a ferocity that continues to reverberate across generations.
This Masters of Cinema Series film presents this new 4K restoration of the film in a special Dual Format (Blu-ray + DVD) edition.
In French with English subtitles.
DVD available to buy from-