Until the Light Takes Us
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This documentary takes a fascinating look at the underground anti-consumerist metal scene that gained popularity in Norway in the 1990s. Led by the messages of bands from the black metal scene, members of the movement eventually followed alleged leader Varg Vikernes to commit such violent acts as burning churches all over the country. Encouraged by fabricated accounts of outlandish and even supernatural activity, members of the movement eventually turned fiction into reality, creating a firestorm of controversy and bringing the stuff of urban legends into the history books. ~ Cammila Collar,… More
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 45%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Unfortunately, everything the neo-Vikings say is unchallenged."
‑ Stephen Cole, Globe and Mail
"This is worth seeing for its snapshot of countercultural delusion and the comedy of Varg "Count Grishnackh" Vikernes, pompous crypto-Nazi and incarcerated murderer, whining that the media have distorted his subtle social critique."
‑ Cliff Doerksen, Chicago Reader
"Neatly made, but frustratingly anaemic, so keen to avoid editorialising and judgement that it ends up lacking in clarity, tension and even coherence."
‑ Frances Morgan, Electric Sheep
"This may be the first headbangers' movie that will put hard-rock fans to sleep."
‑ Sean Means, Salt Lake Tribune
"Glacially paced yet gripping."
‑ Shaula Clark, Boston Phoenix
"Their dedication to giving the players their moment on the podium prevented Aites and Ewell from asking provocative questions, or, it would seem, any questions at all."
‑ Joan Anderman, Boston Globe
"That's all fascinating as far as it goes, but to some degree Vikernes is playing his liberal American guests."
‑ Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com
"When Aites and Ewell manage to illuminate the complex relationship between art and action, Until the Light Takes Us can be fascinating and powerful."
‑ Josh Bell, Filmcritic.com
"It's an unsettlingly intimate look from inside the movement at its rise and fall; the filmmakers manage to make us understand why the music matters while not giving its violent creators a pass."
‑ Rob Thomas, Capital Times (Madison, WI)
"Long on atmosphere and short on context, the film dances around whatever points it wants to make, sticking solely to the players' points of view."
‑ Stan Hall, Oregonian
"In interviews with a few of the key players, the film desensationalizes the story without really demystifying it. It's an intriguing but shallow examination that never really finds a point of view about its subject."
‑ Kerry Lengel, Arizona Republic
"Aaron Aites and Audrey Ewell's absorbing, low-key documentary "Until the Light Takes Us" recounts how a few Norwegian musicians hijacked an obscure offshoot of heavy metal and made it world famous."
‑ Mike Hale, New York Times
"This fascinating documentary takes a judicious look at the Church-burning hysteria that emerged from the notorious Norwegian black metal scene in the 1990s."
‑ Alistair Harkness, Scotsman
"This is one of the most inept and clumsy pieces of filmmaking in recent history."
‑ Jeff Vice, Deseret News, Salt Lake City
"Rough-hewn documentary of the heavy-metal subgenre black metal and the disaffected Norwegian youth culture that spawned it finds yin-and-yang exemplars to tell the story."
‑ Frank Lovece, Film Journal International
More reviews for Until the Light Takes Us on Rotten Tomatoes