Sol­diers shown in vivid colour

THEY SHALL NOT GROW OLD (MA15+)

The Courier-Mail - - MOVIES - LEIGH PAATSCH

THIS spell­bind­ing doc­u­men­tary by mas­ter film­maker Peter Jack­son blends a mes­meris­ing level of cin­e­matic in­no­va­tion with a dis­arm­ingly vivid brand of sto­ry­telling that bro­kers a new un­der­stand­ing of one of his­tory’s dark­est con­flicts. The an­cient black and white footage we all as­so­ciate with World WarI – scratchy, flick­er­ing and sped up due to the cam­eras of the era – is vir­tu­ally nowhere to be seen. Thanks to ad­vances in pro­cess­ing tech­nol­ogy, that footage is now of the high­est qual­ity – crys­tal clear, full of as­ton­ish­ing de­tail and free of all stac­cato, herky-jerky move­ment. Some­what au­da­ciously, Jack­son has raised the stakes by hand-colour­ing the footage and then ren­der­ing it into 3D. The risks taken pay off in spec­tac­u­lar and grip­ping fash­ion. The wildly vary­ing rhythms of a sol­dier’s life on the bat­tle­fields on France – the fixed rou­tines, the un­pre­dictable bru­tal­ity and the sheer hu­man­ity – are cap­tured pow­er­fully and poignantly, with a level of de­tail that is highly im­mer­sive. Opens Sun­day. THIS fas­ci­nat­ing, mov­ing and well-acted drama fo­cuses on the con­tro­ver­sial prac­tice of con­ver­sion ther­apy, in which ho­mo­sex­ual youth are shipped off to re­li­giously in­clined re­hab fa­cil­i­ties to “pray the gay away”. Work­ing in writer-di­rec­tor mode, Aus­tralian ac­tor Joel Edger­ton tack­les this com­plex, hot-but­ton topic with im­pres­sive lev­els of tact, sen­si­tiv­ity and bal­anced in­sight. The true story told here is based on the best-sell­ing mem­oirs of Gar­rard Con­ley (played by Lu­cas Hedges), the gay son of an Amer­i­can Bap­tist preacher (Rus­sell Crowe). Nicole Kid­man is a stand­out as Gar­rard’s qui­etly sup­port­ive mum as is the film’s elo­quent push for greater ac­cep­tance.

ELO­QUENT: Nicole Kid­man, Rus­sell Crowe in Boy Erased

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