From Here to Eternity (1953) - Rotten Tomatoes

From Here to Eternity (1953)



Critic Consensus: It has perhaps aged poorly, but this languidly paced WWII romance remains an iconic, well-acted film, featuring particularly strong performances from Burt Lancaster and Montgomery Clift.

Movie Info

The scene is Schofield Army Barracks in Honolulu, in the languid days before the attack on Pearl Harbor, where James Jones' acclaimed war novel From Here to Eternity brought the aspirations and frustrations of several people sharply into focus. Sergeant Milt Warden (Burt Lancaster) enters into an affair with Karen (Deborah Kerr), the wife of his commanding officer. Private Robert E. Lee "Prew" Prewitt (Montgomery Clift) is a loner who lives by his own code of ethics and communicates better with his bugle than he does with words. Prew's best friend is wisecracking Maggio (Frank Sinatra, in an Oscar-winning performance that revived his flagging career), who has been targeted for persecution by sadistic stockade sergeant Fatso Judson (Ernest Borgnine). Rounding out the principals is Alma Lorene (Donna Reed), a "hostess" at the euphemistically named whorehouse The New Congress Club. All these melodramatic joys and sufferings are swept away by the Japanese attack on the morning of December 7. No words could do justice to the film's most famous scene: the nocturnal romantic rendezvous on the beach, with Burt Lancaster's and Deborah Kerr's bodies intertwining as the waves crash over them. If you're able to take your eyes off the principals for a moment or two, keep an eye out for George Reeves; his supporting role was shaved down when, during previews, audiences yelled "There's Superman!" and began to laugh. From Here to Eternity won eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and supporting awards to Sinatra and Reed. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovimore
Rating: G
Genre: Drama, Romance, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Daniel Taradash
In Theaters:
On DVD: Oct 23, 2001
NCM Fathom - Official Site


Burt Lancaster
as Sgt. Milton Warden
Montgomery Clift
as Robert E. Lee Prewit...
Deborah Kerr
as Karen Holmes
Frank Sinatra
as Pvt. Angelo Maggio
Donna Reed
as Alma Lorene
Ernest Borgnine
as Sgt. Judson
Philip Ober
as Capt. Dana Holmes
Jack Warden
as Cpl. Buckley
George Reeves
as Sgt. Maylon Stark
John Dennis
as Sgt. Ike Galovitch
Tim Ryan
as Sgt. Pete Karelsen
Barbara Morrison
as Mrs. Kipfer
Kristine Miller
as Georgette
Jean Willes
as Annette
Merle Travis
as Sal Anderson
Claude Akins
as Sgt. Baldy Thom
Arthur Keegan
as Treadwell
Robert Karnes
as Sgt. Turp Thornhill
Robert J. Wilke
as Sgt. Henderson
Bob Wilke
as Sgt. Henderson
Douglas Henderson
as Cpl. Champ Wilson
Don Dubbins
as Friday Clark
John L. Cason
as Cpl. Paluso
John Bryant
as Capt. Ross
Vicki Bakken
as Suzanne
Weaver Levy
as Bartender
Tyler McVey
as Major Stern
Robert Healy
as Soldier
James Brick Sullivan
as Military Guard
Freeman Lusk
as Col. Wood
Robert Pike
as Major Bonds
Carleton Young
as Col. Ayres
Fay Roope
as Gen. Slater
Alvin Sargent
as Nair [uncredited]
Wayne Norman
as Soldier
Willis B. Bouchey
as Lieutenant Colonel
John Davis
as Soldier
Manny Klein
as Trumpeter
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for From Here to Eternity

Critic Reviews for From Here to Eternity

All Critics (49) | Top Critics (11)

The film is anonymously directed, functionally paced and hysterical at times, though it seduces as a hot-blooded spectacle that stitches emotional detail onto the epic canvas of history.

Full Review… | February 23, 2015
Time Out
Top Critic

There isn't a dull moment in the picture.

Full Review… | February 23, 2015
New York Daily News
Top Critic

In From Here to Eternity, you can glimpse an uneasier future for America, with the social wreckage and the pretending.

Full Review… | January 29, 2014
The New Republic
Top Critic

Scriptwriter Daniel Taradash rescued, if not quite a gem, then at least a high-grade industrial diamond from this rough original.

Full Review… | February 18, 2009
TIME Magazine
Top Critic

It is an important film from any angle, presenting socko entertainment for big business.

Full Review… | November 1, 2007
Top Critic

Sominex is cheaper and probably safer.

Full Review… | December 13, 2006
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for From Here to Eternity

Set in the weeks leading up to the attack on Pearl Harbor, this is an easy paced (re: leisurely) melodrama focusing on several people at and around the Schofield Army Barracks in Honolulu. It's based on an acclaimed novel (though the film was heavily toned down) and won a ton of Oscars, including Best Picture.

It's a fair enough film, although I think it's mostly carried by the performances rather than the story lines, and also the performances probably stand out as better overall than the film as a whole. I wasn't sure I'd like it, what with all you ever seem to hear about it being in reference to the legendary scene where Lancaster and Kerr embrace on a beach as waves crash around them. There's some macho guy type stuff, and that's good, but I could have used more of that, and just an uncompromised adaptation in general.

The cast is notable, with appearances from Burt Lancaster, Montgomery Clift, Deborah Kerr, Donna Reed, Frank SInatra (in a great, Oscar winning role), and the wonderful Ernest Borgnine as an antagonist of sorts. They all do a great job, and Sinatra I feel did really deserve his Oscar.

All in all, a decent enough film. Zinnemann knew how to tell a great story, and it is shot well, but I don't think it's as good as it's made out to be. Still though, I was entertained, and it is better than the similar stuff that Michael Bay did in his infamous account of Pearl Harbor, so take that as some sort of recommendation.

Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

an oldiie but a goodie a real "classic"~!!!
just look at the cast...Burt Lancaster Deborah Kerr Ernest Borgnine Donna Reed Frank!!!
The film (and the book before it) tells the story of bored soldiers stationed in Hawaii in the six months or so before the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
the actors all played there parts well in this one.Its a Romantic Masterpiece and more of a chick flick than a war movie in my opinion.

♥Robyn M♥

Super Reviewer


An absolute classic fifties movie about love and war. Highly dramatic, highly exciting, and highly romantic. A terrific movie.

Aj V

Super Reviewer

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