They Shall Not Grow Old

Peter Jackson

GB, New Sealand 2018. 99 Min.
color. DCP. 3D. E

Basically, They Shall Not Grow Old tells a well-known story: that of the front-line soldier during World War One. Starting with volunteering, via basic training and on to the front, from the first combat experience to the shock when everything is over in late 1918 and the soldier doesn’t know what to do during peacetime with the human being he has become in the trenches. But the way Peter Jackson tells the story here is something you have never seen or heard before – anything less would have been surprising for the director of films such as The Lord of the Rings (2001-03). Jackson was given free access to the film and sound material at the Imperial War Museum, which he then massively edited. The second half of the film was completely coloured, in a style that is more painterly than realistic; and an enormous, complex soundtrack was created, for which among other things lip readers discovered what the soldiers are saying in the silent images. To top it all off, it was all converted to 3D. On the one hand, all this makes the film a genuine spectacle, on the other hand a highly intelligent revision of the material, taking into account the techniques and aesthetic preferences of the years in which the 19th century died and the 20th century was born. (om)


DirectorPeter Jackson
EditingJabez Olssen
MusicJohn Neill
ProducersPeter Jackson, Clare Olssen