When The Jazz Singer arrived in theaters in 1927, it was far from perfect. In fact, despite heralding the arrival of sound pictures, its audio was quite poor in quality, and it would take many years before the sound in sound films would be accepted as natural. But The Jazz Singer will forever be remembered in the film history books. I'm not so sure that U2 3D will hold the same kind of prestige as that film, but it ought to, because as the first live-action digital 3D film, it is certainly opening the door for a brand new kind of movie experience, one that will likely be the standard in coming decades, if not years.

The problem with U2 3D's prestige could be that it is neither the first 3D movie, nor is it the first digital 3D film. But people have never seen anything like this before, enough that we could consider those early analog 3D films the equivalent of D.W. Griffith's failed 1921 sound film Dream Street, which used poorer technology than The Jazz Singer. And we could consider those recent animated digital 3D movies as the equivalent of the 1926 film Don Juan, which featured a synched soundtrack of music and sound effects, yet no dialogue. Anyway, what I'm saying is that U2 3D must be seen, not necessarily because it's a great film, but because it's an important film, and you can say you saw it when.

Not much of a U2 fan? Well, I'm not either. I've never owned a U2 album (though I will admit to liking most of the band's early singles), and I never had any interest in seeing them live, let alone seeing a concert film of them performing. However, while most concert films are limited to fan appeal -- unless Martin Scorsese or some other great filmmaker shoots them -- U2 3D is obviously different. Plus, it was co-directed by well-known music video director-turned-Hollywood-player Mark Pellington (Arlington Road) and video maker Catherine Owens, who is best known for directing U2's "Original of the Species" video and content for the band's multimedia-filled Zoo TV tour.