Intermittently available in this country in a mutilated 73-minute version, Gance's second version of J'Accuse (the first was made in 1919) is at last available in its integral 116-minute form. At the Gance Retrospective which took place in the 1960s in London, Richard Roud noted:

“This, for me, is the best of Gance's sound films. In the text-books it is usually dismissed as a commercial re-make of the silent version. In point of fact it's not a re-make, strictly speaking. The whole action of the early film is got through in the first third of the sound version, which then goes on to the between-the-wars period and gains more immediacy by relaying the fears of a second World War during the late Thirties. Moreover the theme has been subtly changed. No longer do the dead come back to see whether their sacrifice has been in vain. In this film, they return because they actually know that all war is futile. This version benefits from Victor Francen's magnificent playing in the lead; as well as from Gance's exciting use of sound and music - both realistically and sometimes expressionistically. The whole mood of pre-war anguish is memorably rendered; indeed, as protest, has seldom been equalled.”

This page may by only partially complete. For additional information about this film, view the original entry on our archived site.