Movie Reviews: Force of Arms (1951)
“The most beautiful love story ever told!”
Force of Arms (1951)
Director: Michael Curtiz
Cast: William Holden, Nancy Olson, Frank Lovejoy
Synopsis: An American sergeant falls for a WAC during WWII.
In wartime Italy, a gung-ho army sergeant (William Holden – Sunset Boulevard, Paris – When It Sizzles) meets and falls for a WAC (Nancy Olson – The Boy from Oklahoma, The Absent-Minded Professor) and suffers a mini crisis of confidence as he starts playing safe on the battlefield so that he can get back to his new girlfriend and sample her wares. And that’s about it, really. Male lead William Holden has enough star quality to keep things interesting while he’s on the screen (and nab the lion’s share of close-ups) and Nancy Olson makes a fetching object of his affections, but the story they have to work with is awfully thin. Fortunately, old-hand Michael Curtiz is behind the camera and provides the kind of assured direction that we tend to take for granted from studio movies from the 1940s. Essentially a sequence of battle scenes interspersed with members of the armed forces philosophising about the meaning and nature of love.
(Reviewed 10th November 2011)