A Farewell to Arms

Overview

This first film version of Ernest Hemingway's novel A Farewell to Arms stars Gary Cooper and Helen Hayes. Cooper plays Lt. Frederick Henry, a World War I officer who falls in love with English Red Cross nurse Catherine Barkley Hayes-after first mistaking her for a woman of ill repute. Henry's friend, Major Rinaldi, is envious of the romance, and pulls strings to have Catherine transferred to Milan. When Henry is wounded in battle, he ends up in the very hospital where Catherine works. They resume the affair, ...
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Overview

This first film version of Ernest Hemingway's novel A Farewell to Arms stars Gary Cooper and Helen Hayes. Cooper plays Lt. Frederick Henry, a World War I officer who falls in love with English Red Cross nurse Catherine Barkley Hayes-after first mistaking her for a woman of ill repute. Henry's friend, Major Rinaldi, is envious of the romance, and pulls strings to have Catherine transferred to Milan. When Henry is wounded in battle, he ends up in the very hospital where Catherine works. They resume the affair, which reaches an ecstatic peak just before Henry is returned to the front. The now-pregnant Catherine remains in Switzerland, sending letters by the bushelfull to Henry. But the jealous Rinaldi sees to it that Henry never receives those letters, leading Catherine to conclude sorrowfully that Henry has forgotten her. As the Armistice approaches, Henry makes his way to Switzerland, hoping to find Catherine.
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Special Features

Trailers; Gallery of images
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Although the ending was altered, this A Farewell to Arms is one of the best cinematic adaptations of an Ernest Hemingway work. True, the film doesn't quite capture the unique Hemingway voice and style, but it does have some of his flavor; more importantly, it translates the story into "Hollywood" terms that make it more cinematically appealing. If the film lacks the depth of the novel, it still packs an emotional wallop. Certainly a great deal of the credit must go to stars Helen Hayes and Gary Cooper, who make an odd physical pair but who have a genuine, affecting chemistry. Hayes is radiant in one of her finest screen performances, playing suffering, nobility, and heartbreak in an outsized style that still rings true. Cooper utilizes his considerable charm to good effect, helped by his truly impressive good looks; while he's not as comfortable as Hayes with some of the heightened emotion, he still pulls it off. Director Frank Borzage skillfully blends the romance with the war-themed story, creating both impressive battle vistas and intimate, softly lit duets -- all with the inestimable help of cinematographer Charles B. Lang. Modern audiences will undoubtedly find portions of the film (and its style) dated and over the top, but those willing to meet it on its own terms will be rewarded.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 12/20/2011
  • UPC: 738329081423
  • Original Release: 1932
  • Source: Kino Video
  • Time: 1:29:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 41,930

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Gary Cooper Lt. Frederick Henry
Helen Hayes Catherine Barkley
Adolphe Menjou Maj. Rinaldi
Mary Philips Helen Ferguson
Mary Phillips
Jack LaRue The Priest
Henry Armetta Bonello
George Humbert Piani
Fred Malatesta Manera
Mary Forbes Miss Van Campen
Tom Ricketts Count Greffi
Gilbert Emery British Major
Alice Adair Cafe Girl
Agostino Borgato Giulio
Blanche Frederici Head Nurse
Paul Porcasi Inn Keeper
Technical Credits
Frank Borzage Director
Roland Anderson Art Director
Travis Banton Costumes/Costume Designer
Edward A. Blatt Associate Producer
Hans Dreier Art Director
Oliver H.P. Garrett Screenwriter
Benjamin Glazer Screenwriter
Charles Griffin Consultant/advisor
Herman Hand Score Composer
W. Franke Harling Score Composer
Arthur Jacobson Asst. Director
Bernhard Kaun Score Composer
Charles B. Lang Cinematographer
John Leipold Score Composer
John Leipold Score Composer
Harold Lewis Sound/Sound Designer
Otho Lovering Editor
Paul Marquardt Score Composer
Ralph Rainger Score Composer
Ernest Hemingway Source Author
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- A Farewell to Arms
1. Opening Titles [:09]
2. Fated to Meet [10:33]
3. Dreaming Of Love [11:01]
4. Losing His Head [7:01]
5. Convalescence [5:13]
6. October Departure [8:37]
7. Going to Switzerland [10:52]
8. Desertion [8:08]
9. Brissago [10:44]
10. A Brave Girl [9:12]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- A Farewell to Arms
   Play
   Chapters
   Gallery
   Trailers
      Nothing Sacred
      A Star Is Born
      Pandora and the Flying Dutchman
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Don't. Watch.

    Oh my gosh. What happened to this movie? It was terrible! Not only did it have NONE of the messages or themes the book has, but its actors do not act well at all. Do not watch it. It's a waste of time, and the event from the books are completely our of order.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2001

    A bittersweet classic

    This film is all about a beautiful but doomed relationship between a British nurse, played by the radiant Helen Hayes and an American ambulance driver (Gary Cooper). The film may seem somewhat dated, but it really helps to build the WW1 atmosphere. Features superb performances from its lead actors and a sad ending. Also stars Adolphe Menjou.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews