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Aites, Aaron & Ewell, Audrey
Until The Light Takes Us (DVD)
November 2010
Released: 2010, Factory 25
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: Celtic Bob

Originally released in select theaters in 2009 this film tells the Black Metal story and how it rose to global recognition due largely to a few events that took place in the early 90’s.

As I read the press release before putting this disc into my player I wasn’t sure what to expect as Black Metal is not a genre that I listen to or enjoy but I do have an open mind so I popped it into my player.

For the full 90 plus minutes of this documentary style film you will be glued to the screen. It is both interesting and informative with candid interviews with members of Dark Throne and Immortal as well as Varg Vikernes of Burzum. Allot of this film shows Gylvie Nagell (Dark Throne) in his apartment in Norway telling us the history of Black Metal. His recollections along with the Varg interviews shed a whole new light on the stereotypes associated with the genre. The interviews are mixed with old band footage as well as news footage of Varg’s arrest and trial because of the church burnings.

A very interesting film that will take you captive for over an hour and a half whether you like Black Metal or not. It is very informative and all Metal fans should see it.

Bonus review content by JP

Back in April of 2010 I wrote a review of the film Until The Light Takes Us. Then in November of 2010, my colleague Celtic Bob wrote a review of the DVD which has been issued. I happened to pick up the double disc version of the film and asked CB if I could add a few comments about the bonus disc in his review.

Oddly enough, the DVD cover was not the same iconic image of Frost as was used for the promotion of the film. Instead we get a glossy shot of nature with a some faded corpse-paint super-imposed over the image. The Two-Disc version comes with a nice, glossy 10-page booklet with a dozen photos, a review of the film, some commentary from the film makers and another essay by film critic, Tom Mes. Factory 25 have put together a really nice package.

The bonus disc has three main features. The first are the deleted scenes. This is as it sounds and clocks in at over half-an-hour. The scenes are shot much in the same style as the bulk of the film.

The next section is called The Cutting Room which to me is essentially more deleted scenes but consists of interviews which musicians who were not in the actual film. These include interviews with members from Burzum, Darkthrone, Enslaved, Immortal and Ulver. This section runs about 45 minutes.

Lastly and the most interesting to me was the Black Metal University. This is a simply Fenriz of Darkthrone, in a classroom in front of a giant chalk board explaining the musical lineage of Black Metal. No frills, no interview, just a running monologue. This section lasts 45 minutes. You can show Black Metal 101 to your non-Black Metal friends and they should get it.

The three bonus segment clock in at over two hours of material so for the few extra bucks if you are a die-hard fan it is well worth the money. Overall whichever version you get single disc or double disc, Until The Light Takes us is a fantastic piece of work.
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