A feature length documentary chronicling the history, ideology and aesthetic of Norwegian black metal – a musical subculture infamous as much for a series of murders and church arsons as it is for its unique musical and visual aesthetics.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what's now showing
Worth watching solely to laugh at the megalomania and utter lack of irony or humor among the founders of the scene. Like the equally bad "Metal: A Headbanger's Journey", gives a cursory and shoddily assembled look at a genre which deserves comprehensive portrayal by competent hands. ★★
Not quite as all-encompassing as the synopsis makes it seem. But limited scope leads to its most interesting aspect: black metal being stripped down to aesthetics by gallery artists & (more importantly) the reactions of its originators, the musicians themselves. Sadly missing, then, is Gaahl of Gorgoroth, who always held aesthetics & politics in equal measure, & who now designs high-end fashion & beds male models.
Complete apologist piece for Vikernes. 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. Vikernes' real extremism goes completely unexplored. I'm not looking for demonization, I'm looking for basic, fully realized journalism. It's not here.
Outstanding, mainly because -as a great documentary should- it allows to face the thoughts, ideas and circumstances of a bunch of guys you don't necessarily will agree with. This documentary is not "politically correct" and that's something the directors should be proud of.
As a film and a documentary this is fairly amateurish, but the subject matter interests me and is presented much more honestly than in sensational tripe like Lords of Chaos. Frost is such a joke. Hellhammer is a bigoted tool and Vikernes is a deluded manchild (though I love his music). Fenriz, however, seems to be the one man left disillusioned in the wake of this once transcendent subculture he helped create.