Re-Release Of Iconic Bowie Film ‘The Man Who Fell To Earth’
This September sees the re-release of the seminal sci-fi film ‘The Man Who Fell To Earth’, starring David Bowie. Directed by Nicolas Roeg, this was Bowie’s first foray into the world of cinema and has remained a favourite amongst Bowie fans and science fiction fans alike.
First released in 1976, The Man Who Fell to Earth tells the story of a humanoid alien, played by Bowie, who visits Earth to source water for his arid homeland. Adopting the name Thomas Jerome Newtown, he sets out to earn enough money to build a spacecraft to take himself, and water, back home. Using the advanced technology of his home planet, Newtown patents a number of high tech inventions and becomes wealthy enough to embark on his voyage home. His plans are thwarted when his true alien-identity is revealed. Newtown is kept in captivity, away from his lover on earth Mary-Lou, and even further away from his wife and family on his home planet. Once he escapes from his prison, Newtown is now an alcoholic in a world he feels is futile (although his youth and looks are untarnished as the years go by). Broken and alone, Newtown never returns to his home planet
After seeing Bowie in the televised documentary Cracked Actor, Roeg drew parallels between the singer and Newtown. The documentary captured a rake thin Bowie in an unstable mental state. With a shock of orange hair and gaunt face, this was a dangerously fractured soul on the precipice of superstardom. In Bowie, Roeg saw a fragile creature drifting through an unfamiliar landscape. Caught up in a spiral of fame and fortune, Bowie was being constantly dissected by the media, yet his focus on artistry and music was unwavering. In Roeg’s eyes, Bowie was a ready-made Newtown.
Hailed by critics as a visual tour de force, The Man Who Fell to Earth, is packed full of surreal imagery, strange sex and breath-taking cinematography. While superficially a film about faraway galaxies, The Man Who Fell to Earth, is about alienation of a more human kind. This is the tale of a lost soul, rather than a stranded extra-terrestrial. Studio Canal have been working on a 4K restoration of the film since late 2015. It will debut in English cinemas on September 9th, with a DVD set for release in October.