The Film Version of 'A Farewell to Arms' Is Released
Gary Cooper and Helen Hayes play Frederic and Catherine, a soldier and nurse who fall for each other in wartime, and they are matched perfectly.
They bring Borzage's liking for towering, vulnerable men and tiny, tough women to its visual apotheosis (her head barely reaches his armpit when they walk). Their acting styles also contrast and complement each other, so that as the movie goes on, he has more control over his little-boy effects, and her grand-lady affectations melt away into real emotion. Hayes admitted that she fell deeply in love with Cooper while making the film, but she never told him or did anything about it, and this adds to the movie's feeling of revelation and its pleasing frankness about sex.
Ernest Hemingway - Novel
Benjamin Glazer - Screenplay
Oliver H.P. Garrett - Screenplay
Laurence Stallings - Play (uncredited)
Cast (in credits order)
Helen Hayes - Catherine Barkley
Gary Cooper - Lt. Frederic Henry
Adolphe Menjou - Maj. Rinaldi
Mary Philips - Helen Ferguson
Jack La Rue - Priest
Blanche Friderici - Head Nurse
Mary Forbes - Miss Van Campen
Gilbert Emery - British Major