If you've been fortunate enough to have already seen Peter Jackson's acclaimed documentary "They Shall Not Grow Old," then you likely agree with critics of the film who wrote — as The New Yorker's Adam Gopnik did — that it "will remain the most memorable film of the past year."
Gopnik also questions what Jackson has done, specifically his modifying old film stock to make century-old images look as if they were happening today. He refers to the expressions of the "soldiers, in the midst of their nightmare, smiling sheepishly as they realize that, for the first time in any of their lives, they are the subjects of a movie camera."
And he comments: "When it comes to film, at least, black-and-white and silent are the way the period saw itself, understood itself, made sense of itself. By altering that mirror, we fail to see the subjects staring into it quite accurately."
Whatever the merits of Gopnik's argument, the fact is that the film — which Jackson made for Britain’s Imperial War Museums, in conjunction with the BBC — is receiving great acclaim from a number of other critics.
Lindsey Bahr, The Associated Press: "It's just images and the voices of those who were there, telling their own stories.And the result is riveting - an immersive, haunting and often transcendent experience that's unlike anything you've ever seen before."
Scout Tafoya, RogerEbert.com: "Once again, [Jackson] has translated something that's growing ancient into a series of images and ideas a modern audience will be able to grasp. And if we can make sense of the image, we can hopefully make sense of the horror it portends."
David Sims, The Atlantic: "The technology Jackson deploys is so advanced that the documentary, which has been colorized and enhanced, captures a surprising degree of character and realism."
And now the buried lede: "They Shall Not Grow Old" will screen again at three area theaters on Jan. 21: Regal Cinemas locations at Northtown Mall and Coeur d'Alene's Riverstone Stadium, and at AMC's River Park Square.
Get your tickets now. They'll be going fast.