On the Radar – Lords of Chaos

By Jason Sawyer – Jan. 8, 2019


If a biopic of your life story is also a horror film, you may have made some questionable decisions. Such is the case of infamous Norwegian black metal band Mayhem (have you heard of the band that used a photo of their lead singer’s suicide as an album cover? That’s them). Pioneers of a homegrown music scene that loathed attention yet reveled in outrage, the members of its most notorious band lived up to their name, starting with outrageous stage shows that involved self-mutilation, moving on to a spree of church arsons, before finally culminating in murder. An internal power struggle ultimately resulted in one member killing another in a knife fight, which isn’t even the previously mentioned murder, and the band is still active today. If they didn’t want attention from normies, they had a peculiar way of showing it.

on the radar lords of chaos 1

“Just burning down another church, or as we like to call it, Saturday night.”

Lords of Chaos is the first feature from prominent music video director Jonas Åkerlund in almost a decade. He’s seemingly made something for nearly every platinum-selling musician around – from Lady Gaga and Coldplay to Rammstein and Ozzy – and assumably, this is the music story that he most wants to tell (he himself being a founding member of Swedish metal band Bathory). Rory Culkin (to help keep track of Culkin brothers, he’s the one from Scream 4 and Signs) stars as Mayhem founding guitarist Euronymous, whose penchant for both projecting image and generating controversy would lead to opening a record store, launching a record label, and growing his band’s scandalous profile. However, he finds his credibility challenged by fellow black metal musician Varg, played by Emory Cohen, leading to an escalating feud and competition of metal legitimacy that will eventually end in bloodshed. As the film admits to be based on both truth and lies, it’s likely impossible at this point to decipher where reality ends and legend begins, but Lords of Chaos is set on depicting a blood-curdling tale of a youth culture scene that descends into misanthropic destruction.

If this sounds compelling, then the good news is that the film is slated for a limited theatrical release from distributor Gunpowder & Sky a month from today on February 8th. Whether or not it will receive a same-day VOD release or if that will happen at a later time remains to be seen – it’s common for these buzzed-about indie films to get a simultaneous roll-out. In the meanwhile, here’s a brief teaser trailer for Lords of Chaos.

In other On The Radar news, Braid will be getting a limited theatrical+VOD release from Blue Fox Entertainment on Feb. 1 while IFC Midnight has Pledge coming out on Jan. 11th, this upcoming Friday.

On the Radar

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