Until the Light Takes Us


Documentary / Music

Until the Light Takes Us (2008) download yts


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Varg Vikernes as Himself
Hellhammer as Himself
720p 1080p
1.13 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 33 min
P/S Unknown
1.79 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 33 min
P/S Unknown

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by blauth_maldoror 10 / 10

that which once was

"until the light takes us" does for the Norse black metal scene what temple's "the filth and the fury" did for early u.k. punk, in that it attempts to retrospectively and yet accurately paint a picture of a so-called extreme music scene ruined by its own strict ideology, media over-exposure, and the inexperience of youth. indeed, many parallels exist between British punk and Norse black metal, not the least of which revolve around corrupt in-scene bosses, misguided fan-boy attempts at emulating the supposed actions of the originators of the particular movement, and a stated ideology lashing out against a generalised societal goal at odds with the very well-being of mankind.

however, whereas our British protagonists used the very rails of pop culture to drive the roller coaster car of punk into the parlour rooms of staid English families from brixton to Liverpool, black metal kept its sounds and image underground during its prime years, leaving only the charred remains of norway's Christian past to give the confused public any hint of its existence. eventually, of course, the media seized hold of the scene, the music, and its participants, and all but re-wrote the events into a cartoonish mythology over the past fifteen years. the core creators of Norwegian black metal have been loathe to give much insight into the impetus behind their actions or ideology in the mainstream media in anything but print, and most of that has been twisted.

Aaron aites and Audrey ewell have gone to great lengths to treat a history long the subject of hysteria and misrepresentation with the venerability and respect due a subject so weighty. for while in the world at large, black metal, if known at all, is a comical footnote to heavy metal - a genre known largely for its "heavy metal parking lot" beer-swilling fans; in norway varg vikerenes is known as the Norwegian Charles manson, and the scene associate with rape, murder, arson and the knife. the film is well balanced, with shots in austere art galleries, forests, pubs, and open air markets. the story line is neither rushed nor over-indulged, and over all the film makers try to maintain a certain neutrality, leaving the audience to judge for itself what to make of these decidedly revolutionary and publicly misanthropic individuals.

there are surprises for all audiences. those unfamiliar with the history of the scene will get a clear picture of what probably transpired in a violent youth scene notorious for satanism and murder in norway between 1989-1994. for black metal devotees, prepare for a treat - rarely seen footage of early, core bands, interviews with many of the musicians who mattered, and untainted interviews with varg himself. prepare for a film with none of the cringe-worthy material you might have previously associated with the sensationalism, ignorance or low-brow blundering of the vbs "true Norwegian black metal" fiasco. interviews with other characters in the scene make for a much different impression than one might otherwise hold.

"until the light takes us" is that rare creature of the underground documentary world; a true portrait of the subject in glistening oils a la van Gogh, rather than some coney island boardwalk pencil caricature.

Reviewed by JoshuaDysart 6 / 10

Complete apologist piece for Vikernes.

Aaron Aites and Audrey Ewell turn out to be complete apologists for Vikernes. There is no mention of his role in the Heathen Front. No confrontation about his earlier writings in neo- nazi zines. It's as if his Odinism somehow exists outside his racist, pure-blood nationalism and eugenicism. It's cool to bag on Christians, god know they've bagged on us for about 1500 years now, but Vikernes' real extremism goes completely unexplored, though the filmmakers are quick to labor the point that he's not a satanist, which any black metal fan knows.

Look, the burning of Christian churches, the suicide, the murder... and the subsequent media feeding frenzy that launched Norwegian black metal onto the world stage, it's all interesting stuff, and there are some places where the record must be corrected. But this is over- correction. This is essentially a propaganda piece for Vikernes that in no way addresses the full and real picture of him or the movement.

I'm not looking for demonization, I'm looking for basic, fully realized journalism. It's not here. If you're not familiar with the early 90's Norwegian black metal movement and the mayhem that went down in it, then you should check this out. But just know that when you're being charmed by Vikernes, as the filmmakers seem to have been, you're being charmed by a very dark guy indeed. This is too loose to be journalism, too soft to be sensationalism and too clumsy to be of much use to anyone.

Reviewed by MetalGeek 7 / 10

Interesting walk on the Dark Side of Metal...

"Until The Light Takes Us" was an interesting documentary about the now-infamous events that took place in the Norwegian Black Metal scene in the early 90s. A small group of performers decided that their mission should include not only music, but a wave of anti-Christian activism aimed at kicking the religion out of Norway altogether, which resulted in numerous church burnings, several murders, and lots of generally anti-social behavior. I've never been a particularly big fan of the music style but have always found these events fascinating in a morbid sort of way. I can remember flipping through the U.K. metal mag "Terrorizer" back then and following all of the news reports about who killed who and who was in jail and so on and thinking "Wow, what is wrong with these people?" "Until the Light Takes Us" may not have helped me to understand the mindset behind these events any more than I did already, but it was an interesting ride nonetheless, into the dark underbelly of a music scene that became legendary in a terrifying sort of way.

The two main "characters" in "Until The Light Takes Us" are drummer "Fenriz" of Darkthrone (credited by some as the first "true" Black Metal band in Norway) and the infamous Varg Vikernes, aka "Count Grishnackh" of Burzum. Vikernes is interviewed at length from his jail cell in Trondheim, where he was serving a lengthy term for the murder of his Mayhem bandmate Euronymous and several church arsons (though I believe he's since been released since this film was shot). I understand that he's sort of Norway's version of Charles Manson nowadays, i.e. a "celebrity" criminal that everyone knows about. Vikernes saw the Black Metal scene as a platform and a vehicle for his political views (i.e. that Norway should reject Christianity outright and return to its Viking/Pagan origins). Vikernes actually comes off as rather good-humored and charming during his interviews, which makes him all the more scary when he describes how he murdered his former bandmate and makes it sound like it was no big deal at all. Fenriz, meanwhile is more or less the "voice of reason" in the film, i.e. a guy who was into it strictly for the music and wishes that all of the whoop-de-doo had never happened. He laments that once the hysteria began, tons of wanna-be's jumped on the bandwagon and started their own terror campaigns, and in his eyes, went totally against everything that Black Metal should've been. By the mid '90s Black Metal became a cartoonish, Satanic trend, and you can tell that Fenriz is sickened by it. I could sort of relate to where he was coming from; from a mainstream metal perspective, he reminded me of the "old" fans of Metallica who bemoaned their sudden popularity when they released "Enter Sandman" and became everyone's darling.

In addition to Fenriz and Vikernes, other interviewees include members of Mayhem, Satyricon, Immortal, and Emperor, some of whom have, shall we say, "interesting" views of the events that transpired in the early '90s. Viewers who are unfamiliar with Black Metal will either think these guys are all from Mars, or that they simply shouldn't be walking around loose. Footage from Norwegian news reports about the string of church arsons and Vikernes' trial (which appears to have been Norway's "Trial of the Century" judging from all the media hoopla) also illustrate what a big deal this was in this small country, while those outside of Norway probably had little to no idea of what was transpiring.

It would probably help to have some idea of who the players are before watching this movie; people who have never heard of Black Metal or know anything about the figures profiled in it are apt to be totally lost. The film could've used a narrator/voice-over at times to fill in gaps and to help things move along in a more linear fashion, and occasionally when a character lapses into his native Norwegian the sub-titles provided are hard to read, but overall I enjoyed "Until the Light Takes Us" and I imagine anyone with an interest in Black Metal, or true crime documentaries, will find it an enjoyable way to spend 90 minutes.

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