War and Peace (movie, 1956)

War and Peace ( War and Peace ) is an American – Italian historical film of war of King Vidor released in 1956 with Audrey Hepburn , her husband Mel Ferrer and Henry Fondaafter the novel War and Peace of Leo Tolstoy of 1865 .


In 1805 in Moscow , military parades, parties and balls succeed in the court of Russia ‘s Tsar Alexander st Russian , although the 200,000 men of the Grand Army domineering Emperor Napoleon er invaded all the Europe and approach each day a little more of the capital.

Countess Natasha Rostov is a young, romantic, angelic girl, full of life, enthusiasm and charm, who grew up in a wealthy, lovingly united family of Russian nobility . Count Peter Bezukhov, humanist and pacifist, frequented the house of Count and Countess Rostov, and managed to gain Natacha’s friendship. Although secretly in love with this young woman younger than him, he married his cousin, the beautiful Princess Helen. Natasha becomes interested in the coveted Prince Andrei Bolkonski, Pierre’s friend, and plans to get married when her fiancé returns from the war (which lasts 7 years).

All the men of the aristocracy and the Russian people are sent to the front to defend Russia against the Napoleonic invasion (from the Battle of Austerlitz from 1805 to the Russian campaign of 1812 ). For its part, the Russian people are instructed to practice the politics of the scorched earth and let chaos in its flight, to take all he can and burn all the rest before fleeing to prevent the 200 000 men Napoleon never find any refuge, comfort, food or rest until Moscow . Pierre, pacifist, joins his friend Prince Andrei Bolkonski on the front to observe the war where he is taken prisoner. The cruelty of battlefields traumatizes it . Andrei, after being wounded and taken prisoner by the enemy at the battle of Austerlitz in 1805 , is again fatally wounded on the battlefield.

The Russian general Mikhail Kutuzov routed Napoleon’s large, clearly domineering army in the winter of 1812 thanks to a fortunate fortunate fortitude and his clever strategy of escape, battle avoidance and burnt land policy scrupulously applied by all a people without a state of mind, even to the city of Moscow, completely burned, and thanks to the terrible Russian winter, which annihilated Napoleon’s army without having fought a great battle (which would have been fatal to the feeble Russian army).

Peace returns in chaos and desolation. The victorious survivors return home where they have everything to rebuild …


  • A record number of 8,000 horses are gathered for this film 1 .
  • This fresco of King Vidor ‘s a Hollywood adaptation of a work by Leo Tolstoy on the history of Russia, the life and the spirit of the Russian aristocracy during the reign of Alexander st .

Technical sheet

  • Director: King Vidor , assisted by Bernard Vorhaus and Mario Soldati
  • Scenario and adaptation: Bridget Boland , Robert Westbery , King Vidor , Mario Camerini , Ennio De Concini , Ivo Perilli , Gian Gaspare Napolitano and Mario Soldati , after the novel War and Peace of Leo Tolstoy of 1865
  • Artistic direction: Mario Chiari , Franz Bachelin
  • Sets: Piero Gherardi
  • Costumes: Maria De Matteis
  • Photography: Jack Cardiff and Aldo Tonti (second team) in VistaVision
  • Sound: Leslie Hodgson
  • Editing: Leo Cattozzo , Stuart Gilmore
  • Music: Nino Rota
  • Production: Dino De Laurentiis
  • Associate production company: Carlo Ponti
  • Production Companies: Ponti-De Laurentiis Cinematografica ; Paramount Pictures
  • Distribution Company: Paramount Pictures
  • Country of origin: United States , Italy
  • Original languages: English , Italian , Russian
  • Format: Color ( Technicolor ) – 35mm – 1.85: 1 – Mono sound (Western Electric Recording) VistaVision process.
  • Genre: Historical Movie
  • Duration: 208 minutes
  • At the time, in the cinema, advertising advertised a film with a duration of 3h45 ‘or 225 minutes. 200 minutes is the duration of the DVD that is released and that is also the duration of the film ‘reworked’ during a resumption in cinema and television years later.
  • Release dates:
    •  United States :
    •  France :


  • Audrey Hepburn (VF: Jacqueline Porel / Barbara Tissier ) : Natacha Rostov
  • Henry Fonda (VF: Jacques Beauchey ) : Pierre Bezukhov
  • Mel Ferrer (VF: Maurice Dorleac ) : Andrei Bolkonski
  • John Mills : Platon Karataev
  • Herbert Lom (VF: Georges Aminel ) : Napoleon Bonaparte
  • Oskar Homolka (VF: Pierre Morin ) : General Mikhail Kutuzov
  • Vittorio Gassman (VF: Serge Lhorca ) : Anatole Kouraguine
  • Anita Ekberg (VF: Monique Mélinand ) : Hélène Kouraguine
  • Helmut Dantine (VF: John Claudio ) : Dolokhov
  • Tullio Carminati (VF: Louis Arbessier ) : Vasili Kouraguine
  • Barry Jones (VF: Raymond Rognoni ) : Prince Mikhail Andreevich Rostov
  • Wilfred Lawson : Prince Bolkonski
  • Mino Doro : Russian General (uncredited)
  • Jeremy Brett : Nicholai Rostov
  • Milly Vitale : Lisa Bolkonskaya
  • Anna Maria Ferrero : Maria Bolkonskaya


1957 : Golden Globe for best foreign film

Notes and references

  1. ↑ Mitchell Symons, Numberland The World in Numbers, p. 112, August 2014, Marabout, ( ISBN  978-2-501-09102-2 )

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