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They Shall Not Grow Old - Peter Jackson's WWI restoration film

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Really need to see this, been listening to Dan Carlin's Blueprint for Armageddon  and the numbers and impact of WW1 are staggering, he keeps using the term meat grinder and it seems totally apt for what happened.

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On ‎16‎/‎10‎/‎2018 at 12:26, Gotters said:

The 3d thing seems a bit odd and a gimmicky addition, don’t really know what the point of that is other than ‘because we can’

 

 

I haven't seen this yet (I couldn't make any of the local screenings so I'm waiting for it on TV) but I wouldn't be at all surprised if at least some of the original footage was filmed in stereo to begin with. Stereo photography is basically as old as photography.

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On 07/11/2018 at 10:30, Gotters said:

just bumping this thread with a reminder that this is on BBC2 930pm this Sunday so you can hit record in your EPGs

 

My EPG's been colourised, converted to 3D and transformed with modern production techniques into what we now call the BBC iPlayer.

 

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On 07/11/2018 at 10:30, Gotters said:

just bumping this thread with a reminder that this is on BBC2 930pm this Sunday so you can hit record in your EPGs

 

I'm going to bump this bump, since Sunday is now tomorrow.

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In preparation to watching the programme this evening, the BBC have released this interesting short video:

A behind the scenes look at how director Peter Jackson created his WWI documentary, using the latest techniques to colourise and restore archive footage.

 

 

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I developed a huge interest in WW1 a couple of years ago and have since read countless books on the subject and spent hours in the WW1 galleries at the Imperial War Museum. This film was a stunning achievement in bringing that period to life and quite literally giving colour to all of these events that I’d read about and the brave men and women that lived through them. It was a harrowing watch that left me in tears but what an amazing production. Couldn’t ask for a more fitting tribute on today of all days.

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An incredible view of the war, astonishing.

 

Harrowing and cruel, but full of life too. And so, so young, many of them just boys.

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I thought the subject matter for this was great but was anyone else really distracted by the post processing work? It just looked so unnatural and creepy I found it to be more of a distraction

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25 minutes ago, Jimmyzilla said:

I thought the subject matter for this was great but was anyone else really distracted by the post processing work? It just looked so unnatural and creepy I found it to be more of a distraction

Im hoping that won’t be the case for me - watching tonight. 

 

Tbh from the Kermode interview clips I came away thing the motion looked fantastic but I wish they’d left it b&w. I don’t think the colour adds anything personally. 

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I couldn't disagree more, I think the colour is everything, it really grounds it into a more real place for me.

 

There were a couple of parts where the postprocessing looked a bit off. Unsurprisingly, when there were close ups of human faces, the uncanny valley strikes again.

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I think the colour really makes the images of no man's land, the barbed wire and the corpses stand out from just being a big sloppy mess, for the first time in footage (not photographs) you could really see the conditions they were battling with and in.

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There were a few things that stood out for me:

 

The horrific trench foot images.

 

The shot of a young man (which was used a couple of times) prior to them going over the top. The look of utter terror on his face and in his eyes was harrowing.

 

The stories of how, when they returned after the end of the conflict, that they faced mass unemployment, outright discrimination, and, perhaps worst of all, lack of understanding or disinterest from their families and people who didn’t fight.

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For me, the transition from b&w to colour (and enlargement to full screen) was breathtaking.  Despite being fairly knowledgable about the war, I hadn't realised such minor details as the men's shirts being light blue.  I'm not sure why colour adds to effectiveness / immediateness but it does.

 

Incredible editing job to arrange the interviews thematically rather than chronologically (as they were presented in the original Great War BBC series).    Very intense and moving experience all round.  Obviously there were many other WW1 experiences which could not be accommodated in this format, other arenas of war, women serving as nurses and ambulance drivers etc, but it really brought home the conditions these men lived and fought in - 4 days in the line -> retreat to work parties and periods of rest in the rear.

 

My grandad lost a leg on the Western Front and like the men interviewed could or would never speak about his experiences with family, but he was fortunate to have a job to return to and, as I discovered recently, an incredibly benevolent employer. It's hard now to think that these lads of 16 or 17 would have been working for several years after leaving school at 13 or so, so no wonder they were keen to get out of their routines.  

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The transition from the too fast, really poor quality, silent original footage to the cleaned up, coloured stuff with sounded added was a real stand out moment for me. It went from being this detached, ethereal imagery that we’ve all seen in the past to something far more real and immediate. It was amazingly done.

 

From there I felt the reality of it was tangible and the story told by the combination of the footage and the voice overs was perfect.

 

I can forgive some of the fast movement and colourisation looking a bit off because of the source material, but in general it really gave me a new perspective on what all those kids went through. Absolutely horrible, but heart warming at the same time.

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I thought this was a stunning piece of work.  Pitched perfectly, very moving and by far the most unsanitised and harrowing visual account I have seen of WWI.

 

As was said a few posts above, the look of abject terror in the faces of those young men was difficult to watch.

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This was as important and difficult a watch as Night Will Fall

 

For anyone who's not seen it, NWF was about the liberation of the concentration camps following the end of the Second World War and was captured on footage shot by Hitchcock and Sidney Bernstein. The footage was then abandoned, possibly due to political reasons, until members of the Imperial War Museum got their hands on it and turned it into the documentary. It's one of only 2 documentaries (the other was India's Daughter) to make me feel physically sick. 

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbB9NCYzQVU

 

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On 07/11/2018 at 23:19, lolly said:

Really need to see this, been listening to Dan Carlin's Blueprint for Armageddon  and the numbers and impact of WW1 are staggering, he keeps using the term meat grinder and it seems totally apt for what happened.

I read this after listening to that podcast

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6262702-there-s-a-devil-in-the-drum

 

Best book I've ever read, there, Iv'e said it.

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