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Post Info TOPIC: All Quiet on the Western Front 2022. Spoiler Alert.


Legend

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All Quiet on the Western Front 2022. Spoiler Alert.
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Have now watched it a few times. It ticks all the usual boxes, for good or bad. The battle scenes are mostly gruesome, although the "human wave" attacks are, as often, rather overdone, and are similar to those in the original 1930 version and Paths of Glory, etc, with infantry out in the open, swarming all over the battlefield.

The place and time are: Champagne, which is fine. Saint-Chamonds were in action there late September/early October. But the battle seems to be happening simultaneously with the signing of the Armistice, which isn't accurate. However, it makes its point, so it's kind of forgiveable.

As noted elsewhere, the flamethrower scene is implausible but pretty ghastly. All the battle scenes are graphic and squalid - lots of mud, and men being shot/crushed/drowned/buried/blown apart.

I could go on for a long time analysing the historical accuracy, attention to detail, and, of course, how faithful it is to the book. All I'll say is that the ending is different from that of 1930 film's.

So to the Saint-Chamonds.

Someone has, clearly, done his/her homework, and has produced convincing replicas and placed them in more or less the correct historical context. A selection of screen grabs below.

At least 5 apparent Saint-Chamonds are visible, but I don't know how many are real and how many are special effects. The one we can be certain is real is a mock-up of an Early Type Saint-Chamond mounted on what I'm told is a Soviet/Russian BMP (Boyevaya Mashina Pyekhoty meaning "infantry fighting vehicle.") It correctly has the Rimailho cannon.

The tanks pass over the German trenches and one is seen to squash to death a German soldier. After the tanks have crossed, the surviving Germans pursue them. A Saint-Chamond can be seen in the distance, knocked out and on fire. A German pushes a stick grenade into the track of one tank, and the explosion immobilises the tank (although the track can be seen intact soon afterwards). A German then pushes a stick grenade into the tank through one of the Hotchkiss machine-gun mounts. I'm not entirely sure that that would be possible, but the grenade goes off, and two French tankers bale out and are shot by the Germans.

That's the last real action from the tanks, apart from a few glimpses in the background. Our protagonist moves on to witness yet more horrors.

Feel free to discuss these or any other matters relating to the film.

 

 

 



-- Edited by James H on Sunday 30th of October 2022 07:37:20 PM

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Legend

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This seems to be the story.

The film-makers had two replicas built for the film. At the moment, I don't know how this came about, but the Saint-Chamond isn't something everyone knows about, so someone involved in the process clearly had some knowledge in depth.

The replicas were built in the Czech Republic at a private armour museum called The Museum on the Line of Demarcation, near the town of Rokycany. As far as I can make out, this unusual name apparently refers to the line between U.S. and Soviet forces when they joined up to confront Nazi forces in 1945.

Anyway, František Koch, the owner of the museum, built two of the replicas on BMP-1 chassis. How they managed to create the appearance of at least 5 in the film, I don't know. After filming, one of the replica hulls was dismantled, but it was decided to keep one in the museum.

What they were made of, I don't know, either. There's a shot of the interior that might give us a clue.

Photos trawled from the Net herewith. I'll see if I can get any more info from Pane Kochu.

BTW, I had read that the film was in German and French, with subtitles, but the version I saw in UK was dubbed into English, so well done that it was barely noticeable.

https://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/WMVNBQ_Demarcation_line_situation_Rokycany_Czech_Republic

https://www.idnes.cz/plzen/zpravy/muzeum-rokycany-demarkacni-linie-maketa-tank-film.A210803_620144_plzen-zpravy_vb

The Museum website: https://vojenskemuzeumrokycany.cz/

 

 



-- Edited by James H on Wednesday 2nd of November 2022 04:32:18 PM



-- Edited by James H on Thursday 3rd of November 2022 06:17:55 PM

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Field Marshal

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Bonjour James,

"The place and time are: Champagne, which is fine. Saint-Chamonds were in action there late September/early October."

No chance for them ! The Saint Chamond was not used in Champagne !

It was only :

          - Renault FT from 501° - 504° - 506° RAS (510 Renault FT)

          - Schneider M2 from Groupement I and III (35 Schneider),

North from Suippes in sector Souain, Tahure, Manre, Orfeuil, St Etiennes-à-Arnes, Somme-Py.

12 French Infantry Division and the second American Infantry Division

Between 26 from September and 8 from October 1918.

They chose the wrong tank. They are, probably not, readers from "Pages 14-18" website (Lol) !

 

Bon week-end - Michel



-- Edited by Tanker on Saturday 5th of November 2022 04:01:28 PM

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Legend

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Oh, dear. Thanks, Michel.

I took my info from Jones/Rarey/Icks, page 60, which lists 2 groups of Saint-Chamonds having taken part in the action of September 26 in Champagne.

However, in the account of the battle, on page 80, it says this series of actions was carried out at the same time as the Americans were engaged in the Argonne, and:

"The 16th Battalion, with 45 Renault tanks, the 10th Company, with 15 Renaults, and the 15th Group, with 12 Schneider tanks, were assigned to the 2nd Corps. The 2nd and 3rd Battalions, with 45 Renaults each, and the 4th and 9th Groups, with 10 Schneider tanks each, were assigned to the 21st Corps. To the 9th Corps were assigned the 10th and 11th Battalions, with 45 Renaults each. It was also planned that the Army should have the 17th and 18th Renault Battalions and two Saint-Chamond groups in reserve."

So, clearly, no Saint-Chamonds in action, and no further mention of them in the description of the action. Were they not even in the vicinity?

 

 

 



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Field Marshal

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