In my post about Casino Royale I had mentioned that “Mads never disappoints”. But Valhalla Rising proved me wrong. Maybe I did not understand the art behind the movie but I was extremely bored while watching the movie. I could barely wait for the movie to be over!
1000 AD, for years, One Eye, a mute warrior of supernatural strength, has been held prisoner by the Norse chieftain Barde. Aided by Are, a boy slave, One Eye slays his captor and together he and Are escape, beginning a journey into the heart of darkness. On their flight, One Eye and Are board a Viking vessel, but the ship is soon engulfed by an endless fog that clears only as the crew sights an unknown land. As the new world reveals its secrets and the Vikings confront their terrible and bloody fate, One Eye discovers his true self.
Director: Nicolas Winding Refn
Cast: Mads Mikkelsen, Maarten Stevenson, Alexander Morton
What I liked:
I liked that it ended. Thankfully it was a short movie & it ended in 92 minutes.
What I did not like:
The presentation: Knowing nothing about the area, its geography, its history, its culture it was difficult for me to understand what the whole thing was about. Having a main character as a mute didn’t help either. I would have gladly appreciated some insights into the the entire Norse warriors, Christian crusaders, pagans thing which might have enabled me to understand the movie better & enjoy it.
Mads Mikkelsen: They totally wasted an excellent actor. They made him mute. Yes, we got to see his abs but I would have much rather heard him speak. He was good in the fight scenes but when half the movie is about blood shed & violence it seems really unimportant how each fight went.