On Jan. 24, Lionsgate Films released the Limited Collector’s Edition of The Man Who Fell to Earth starring David Bowie. While the set is beautiful and the movie has fame as a cult classic, it is probably one of the strangest films ever made.
Bowie plays Thomas Jerome Newton, an alien who looks human and comes from a planet in the middle of a catastrophic drought. His mission is to make enough money to build a spaceship to bring water home to his family. He starts a company on the leading edge of technology and makes a few friends including a lover, here on Earth.
That’s what the story is supposed to portray, but it’s very odd. It’s definitely an art film with strange cuts between scenes and a lot of nudity. The story doesn’t make a lot of sense. It’s never explained how Bowie will bring any amount of water that will save his planet back with him and he mostly seems not to be in much of a hurry to return. When people discover who he is, he’s held captive for a while, but when he escapes, no one seems to notice or care.
The set itself is striking. The remastered movie and bonus content are available on both a Blu-ray disc and two DVDs. Digital HD of the film is available as well. With these come photo cards from certain scenes, a pamphlet about the actors, a movie poster and a booklet describing the film and the elusive soundtrack. The booklet makes for an interesting read and gives a little more insight into confusing scenes.
If you’re a fan of this film, I would buy this set as it is definitely the ultimate edition. However, if you haven’t seen it and unless you’re a die-hard Bowie fan, I would rent it first to get an idea of what you’re getting into. You may find it too strange for your library.