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They Shall Not Grow Old (2018)

Discussion in 'Movies' started by SamT, Sep 30, 2018.

  1. JQuintana

    JQuintana Screenwriter

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    I would love to watch it but can wait until it hits Netflix. I think this one will mainly appeal to older veterans and historians vs. mainstream moviegoers.
     
  2. GlennF

    GlennF Second Unit
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    Interestingly, it was the second biggest money maker at the box office this past Monday, even beating out a new film like THE MULE. Only SPIDER-MAN beat it, and not by a lot and it was in a whole lot more theatres.
     
  3. Message #43 of 78 Dec 19, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2018
    Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    The 30-minute post-film documentary doesn't claim anything different than what you just did here. Jackson lays out what he was commissioned to do by the IWM, and his reasons for choosing to present the footage they chose for this specific documentary in the manner that they did. Nowhere does he claim that they alone are responsible for restoring all of this footage or that the manner in which they present the footage (frame rate adjustment, colorization, cropped images/designed camera movements per modern sensibilities, 3D, etc.) is itself a "restoration".

    Jackson's intent is for a stirring of emotions towards the individuals that served, not archival. Archival work was not the goal of this film, nor was it what the IWM commissioned Jackson to do for them.
     
  4. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    I think what there may have been is a lot of people making assumptions after seeing brief trailers and promos on YouTube. The short introduction and lengthy making-of features shown with the film make very clear what this is and how it came to be. That said, I would have liked to see mention of the original filmmakers in the credits, where that information is available.

    It would be great if Jackson made another film using the aerial and naval footage hinted at in the making-of. And maybe even some others on related topics. For those who haven't seen it, he had access to over 100 hours of footage and chose to focus this film on the experiences of the British infantryman on the Western Front. There's lots more to see.

    The 3D was spectacularly well done, which is to say that very shortly after putting on the glasses, I wasn't thinking about it. (This is rarely the case for me outside of IMAX 3D, due to my decrepit eyesight.) Colorization is colorization, but as colorization goes, this is about the least annoying colorization that I've seen.
     
  5. GlennF

    GlennF Second Unit
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  6. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    One can quibble about how technology was employed for this homage to the WWI soldiers but the end result is what counts. To me it's undeniable how old B&W footage peopled with ghostly images are transformed in They Shall Not Grow Old into real people.

    Powerful stuff.
     
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  7. Brent Reid

    Brent Reid Supporting Actor

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    In fairness, I haven't seen the 30-minute documentary, only a preview screening of the main feature and numerous promo videos, press releases and new articles. All of those, including some linked previously in this thread, clearly posit the notions I stated above.

    I'm not trying to crap on this project, as I fully appreciate it isn't by any means an archival endeavour. I simply think it could have been done with a lot more honesty and transparency. it is, however, a little surprising to find it so uncritically received on a forum ostensibly dedicated to original aspect ratios, non-redubbed (or fabricated) audio, anti-colorization (I'm not!), directors' intent, etc.
     
  8. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    I think you are just making huge leaps and misconstruing comments @Brent Reid

    The transformative effects (Color and 3d) are what are new here and all of that work was done under Jackson's oversight and what are being rightly praised. I haven't seen anyone saying that Jackson;s team did any archival research, and he's clear about who did what as far as the clean up, color timing, FPS changes, and aspect ratio modifications . No airbrushing of any kind to the original photographers has happened, in fact considerable time is spent lionizing them. I think you are making a complaint about something that isn't happening.
     
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  9. Brandon Conway

    Brandon Conway captveg

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    But this film is its own entity. The choices on how to use the footage is entirely Jackson's as the director; any way he chose to present the footage is 100% aligned to his preference and intent. Jackson isn't presenting a film from 1914 or 1916, but rather his film in 2018. Whatever sources he uses and however he presents them isn't done to recreate what the filmmakers 100 years ago were trying to accomplish, but rather something wholly different. It's akin to Welles' F for Fake in this regard (though the motivations are quite different), wherein Welles constructs a full "conversation" out of two still photos using every editing and mixing trick at his disposal in the early 70s. Ken Burns has made a living out of zooming in on historical photos and having voice actors read letters, etc., in his documentaries. Would you suggest that he violated the intent of the original photographers and writers by doing so?
     
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  10. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    This is not a case of Jackson repurposing footage from a theatrical feature. He's not dealing with "original director's intent" in the sense that we normally think of it. Most of this footage was shot from wherever and whenever they managed to set up a camera. They weren't carefully framed for effect, and their subjects are candid. It's more like a collection of stock footage.

    As for the added sound effects and ADR, for the most part it's pretty unobtrusive. The focus is on the period voiceovers, which are cleaned up a little but not dubbed.
     
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  11. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    You are kinda making my point. The sound is the fakest part of the movie. The least honest. And nobody is kvetching about that.
     
  12. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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  13. steve jaros

    steve jaros Supporting Actor

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    Saw this World War I documentary as seen from the POV of the British soldier on December 27th and highly recommend it. It is fascinating to see 100 year old footage of the Great War, lovingly restored by Peter Jackson. Part of that 'restoration' is colorization, which usually i am adamantly opposed to, but it works here.

    My grade: A

    This film was shown in selected theaters last month, on December 17 and 27, but due to high demand is being shown again on one day only, January 21st, so check your local listings:

    https://www.fathomevents.com/events/they-shall-not-grow-old
     
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  14. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Yeah, I'm going to see it on Monday in 3-D. My AMC Classic theater complex is charging $8.69 to see it in 3-D. However, it's not eligible for A-List, but at that price point I can at least apply the cost of the ticket to my points.
     
  15. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    I'm so disappointed - it looks like this is only screening in NYC on Monday, and I work on Monday. Every single showtime falls within my working ours. So, Fathom has done three different showings for this and all have been while I was at work. Sigh...
     
  16. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    Regal is also advertising this as January 21st only.

    I have Monday off for Washington's Birthday, but Albany's supposed to get buried with close to two feet of snow over the weekend so I doubt I'll be going anywhere.
     
  17. Jeff Adkins

    Jeff Adkins Cinematographer

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    It's supposed to go much wider on 2/1 and will be a general release from Warner Bros instead of Fathom Events. I will wait until then because I can use A-List.
     
  18. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    My Regal added a 10pm showing and my shift ended at 9 - I’m at the theater now and waiting for it to start. A very nice surprise.
     
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  19. Tino

    Tino Executive Producer
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    Saw it today thanks to A-List.

    I thought it was a technically tremendous film. The end result of cleaning up the old footage was stunning

    The film itself is a pretty straightforward account of British life in the trenches on the western front during WW1.

    Hearing the actual soldiers telling their stories with the accompanying images on the screen in color and 3D was quite intimate and powerful.
     
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  20. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Yeah, I watched this when it was in limited run back in January. I was impressed, but I didn't realize it was only about Brit troops which kind of disappointed me as I wanted to hear some American stories too.
     
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