They Shall Not Grow Old
Peter Jackson directs a documentary about the First World War which features restored footage from the trenches, colourised and presented in 3D. This double gimmick proves by far the main selling point for They Shall Not Grow Old. At its best, the restored film is an immersive experience like none before. Sound – including some speech – has also been overdubbed onto the old footage, which works, for the most part. Some of the backgrounds look very blocky after the conversion to 3D, but on the most part the update impresses. Where Jackson’s documentary fails, however, is in saying anything new. Trench life is engagingly represented, but we learn nothing not available in a basic school history book. The politics of war are all but ignored, and the overall rhetorical tone is familiar and unchallenging. They Shall Not Grow Old purports to show the war from an entirely new perspective; once we take off the stereoscopic glasses, however, there’s nothing we haven’t seen before.
Dragged Across Concrete
“Dragged Across Concrete, the third feature from post-grindhouse auteur S. Craig Zahler is his loosest and cruellest work to date, scattering moments of great wit and suspense along a narrative that is too long and dogged by prickly ethical questions.
Mel Gibson stars as Brett Ridgeman, a veteran police detective with a penchant for brutality. Ridgeman and his partner, Anthony Lurasetti (Vince Vaughn) are suspended from the force after a video of them roughing up a suspect makes its way online. With a wife and daughter urging him to relocate to a safer neighbourhood, Ridgeman needs money, a need that will eventually push him and Lurasetti into tailing and ambushing a gang of criminals. Meanwhile, Tory Kittles plays Henry Johns, a man just released from a long stint in prison and looking to make his fortune.”
Read Louis Chilton’s full review here