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The Man Who Fell To Earth (Special Edition) [Blu-ray]
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Nicolas Roeg directs this classic 1970s sci-fi drama in which David Bowie stars as an alien who arrives on Earth in search of water to save his own dying planet. Assuming the name Thomas Jerome Newton, he soon forms a lucrative partnership with patent attorney Oliver Farnsworth (Buck Henry) by creating revolutionary products. As their business develops into a hugely successful financial empire, Thomas plans to use the profits to build a ship that will return him to his home world. However, while he waits for his ship to be ready, he begins to fall prey to earthly pleasures and failings.
From director Nicolas Roeg, The Man Who Fell To Earth is a science-fiction cult classic starring David Bowie. Crash landing on Earth from his dying planet, an alien humanoid traveling by the name Thomas Jerome Newton uses his superior intelligence to build a vast business empire. As he takes on, and beats, every US corporation, people can only guess his true purpose: to save his dying world from agonizing death by drought. Newton’s ageless fall from grace, as he becomes prey to lust, alcohol, business rivals and the US Government makes The Man Who Fell To Earth not only a bitingly caustic indictment of the modern world but also a poignant commentary on the loneliness of an outsider.
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You either love this film or absolutely loathe it - there really doesn't seem to be any middle ground with this one. I like it - it's confusing and the narrative is very slow to emerge, but I get it. David Bowie is absolutely perfectly cast as Thomas J Newton - the alien adrift in a complex and disjointed society, unable to find his way home. I really don't imagine this film would have worked with any other actor in the protagonist's role.
I find the sex scenes rather unnecessary as they add no eroticism or tension to the plot, and are somehow not really convincing or believable, but that aside, it's a clever allegorical tale about the perils and evils of modern society and consumerism, and of alienation from our true selves and principles.
For a lifelong and avid fan of David Bowie and a keen fan of science fiction with a message (that's why I like Walter Tevis whose story the film was based on) The Man Who Fell To Earth was a kind of revelation when I first saw it some 20 years ago. There're only few characters that make me feel like that. My heart goes out to the poor "man who fell to Earth", who could never come back to his planet and his old life (due to dirty political games), and Mary-Lou, who unconditionally loved the sad alien...
Nic Roeg at his finest.
He constantly challenges and delights the audience with the use of minimalist dialogue and beautiful imagery.
A film for the more thoughtful and sentimental types which will not disappoint.
This film is a snapshot of the human-condition and will reveal the humanity of those so inclined
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