War and Peace - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

War and Peace Reviews

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January 16, 2018
Man I love these classy, elegant, epic, period pieces from the past. Well done.
½ August 27, 2017
interesting classic story that takes place around the battle of Napolean and the French vs. Russia
½ September 9, 2016
War and Peace (1956) 208m. [2 and a half] D: King Vidor. Audrey Hepburn, Henry Fonda, Mel Ferrer. Very disappointing adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's magnificent book chronicles personal lives in middle of war-torn Russia during Napoleon's infamous 1812 invasion. Expensive, but often ineffectual, thanks to overlength, oversimplification from page to screen, and an abhorrently miscasting of Fonda in role of Russian banker-turned-soldier. You know there's something wrong when not even Audrey's face stops you from checking your watch. 1966 version of same name is way, way better.
½ April 9, 2016
Needed a Selznick to direct this vast canvas, on the scale of a Russian Gone With The Wind. Lacks authentic Russian flavour.
Hepburn as Natasha and Jeremy Brett as Nicholas are best. Some mis-casting, especially Fonda as Pierre.
Some of most touching scenes are actually voice-over soliloquies!
Brett and Hepburn reunited for My Fair Lady 10 years later, and 30 years later (on TV) Brett became the greatest Sherlock Holmes of all time.
Lom is better in Pink Panther!
Fade-outs between scenes a mistake. Some scenes too long, others hardly exist.
Rota score underwhelming.
Worst line:
Sonia: "Moscow's on fire! How terrible!" Understatement!
Best lines:
Natasha (to Pierre): "He (Andre's father) was the first person in the whole world to disapprove of me. I suppose you're not really grown up till that happens to you".
Trivia: Henry Fonda's widow is now partner of Robert Wolders, who was Audrey Hepburn's partner at the time of her death!
March 3, 2016
So, War and Peace is ridiculously too long, the screenplay is incredibly clumsy, the movie is sort of ridiculous overall, and Hepburn/Fonda seem to be grossly miscast (despite having no knowledge here of the book). Despite this myriad of grievances, I gotta say I still enjoyed it. It was entertaining, and despite their miscasting Hepburn and Fonda are magnetically watchable. What was especially great in my opinion was the color cinematography. I kept thinking throughout the film how Powell/Pressburger-esque everything looked, which is a great thing. Of course I discovered just now that Jack Cardiff was the cinematographer, which explains all that. He did an incredible job in this film despite Vidor's directorial skills being much clunkier than Powell/Pressburger's. Overall, with a good bit of fast-forwarding the movie to make it an hour shorter, I had a good time watching it and It made me excited to read the book for what is more likely to be the astonishing masterpiece lurking under this classy mess of an adaptation.
½ February 20, 2016
Being a film releasing in 1956, there were certain wonderfully crafted scenes.
But somehow it was still kinda weak in basic narrative.
February 9, 2016
It's not the novel. Other directors captured the novel. Still, this towering achievement from King Vidor stands as an overlooked grand hollywood epic that outdoes anything from it's era in craftsmanship if not sheer, breathtaking scale.
January 18, 2016
This is a great and totally delightful epic movie with Audrey Hepburn as the most charming and fetching Natasha. The great triumph of the Russian General Kutuzov in saving the army and Russia ranks a one of history's masterstrokes. Many of the characters are memorable and engaging especially Vittorio Gassman as Anatole Kuragin. Helmut Dantine is perfect as Dolohkov in arrogance. All in all
War and Peace is a spectacularly beautiful movie.
½ August 14, 2015
3 and a half hours was too long. I watched the first hour and then skipped through scenes. Some characters looked alike so i got confused and Natasha wasn't a very likable character to me. No motivation or caring to keep watching.
August 6, 2015
A real bad adaptation.
September 25, 2014
Great performances and a great story but it is still far too long.
½ June 5, 2014
I have not read Tolstoy's novel, but this was a solid sweeping epic and love and war. The players do well, with Hepburn and Fonda giving strong performances. I do not know the name of the actor who played Napoleon, but he was very good too. The movie is a bit long, but a solid epic nonetheless.
May 26, 2014
Exceptionally long for a Hollywood feature it does make a fair attempt to get across the epic novel in its epic vein and as a costume drama it looks the part whether it is war or peaceful scenes. There's some big names in this although none of them really stand out in their roles, Herbert Lom is a however a decent enough choice to play Napoleon.
Super Reviewer
½ May 26, 2014
A slight mess albeit one with Henry Fonda and Audrey Hepburn so they are able to save it a little bit. It's a case of the actors not having a great interpretation of the text to work with and unfortunately they have 3 and a half hours worth.
March 5, 2014
I have seen this more times than I can account for, so Beautiful & a Favorite
March 2, 2014
epic period piece all star cast
July 20, 2013
I understand it takes long hours to depict this Tolstoy's masterpiece. But 208 minutes is just too long......Luckily it's not too boring. Cruelty of war, catastrophe of human ambition and, love of course, are well illustrated.
½ July 3, 2013
Always keep a young girl warm.

Two aristocrat French families in the early 1800s are split by the war. Napoleon is on a mission of world domination while the families are on a mission to find love. As the families are split by the war and need for troops, star crossed lovers try to find a way to make things work.

"I have sinned, Lord. But I have several fine excuses."

King Vidor, director of The Big Parade, Duel in the Sun, The Crowd, Solomon and Sheba, Three Wise Fools, and Dusk Till Dawn, delivers War and Peace. The storyline for this picture is amazing and wonderfully compelling. This picture is a true epic in every way and concludes well. I loved the script, characters, and acting. The cast includes Audrey Hepburn, Henry Fonda, Mel Ferrer, Barry Jones, and May Britt.

"You study and become enlightened. I study and become confused."

War and Peace is a movie I came across on Netflix and was surprised that there is a Audrey Hepburn film I was completely oblivious to. I really liked how this film came together. This is a very long picture with several fascinating characters. The subplots are excellent and the overall film comes together perfectly. There are some slow portions of this film; but overall, this is definitely a must see.

"Death is an awakening."

Grade: A-
June 27, 2013
Fascinating but intermitently ridiculous. Audrey Hepburn truly sparkle and henry Fonda has the perfect aristocratic demeanor but his russianness does not translate at all and theres only so much french court worship that can cover for this. The battle scènes are awesome. I wish so many of the philisophical points hadnt been left out. Its lush and long but doesnt feel long so to chose some more substantial scènes and contents from this sprawling book could have done this tame movie a favor.
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