Historical info, mostly... not much of a film review.
As a history geek (and a medievalist in particular) I like to know how,
if at all, costume epics actually tie in to history. With the
assumption that there are others who share my nerdy disposition, I'm
going to throw in what I've managed to connect to this film.
The story is loosely based (and I do mean loosely) on the events
immediately leading up to the rise of Alfred the Great, although Alfred
makes no appearance in this film. It's set primarily in the 860s, and
deals with the capture of a viking named Ragnar (possibly the
semi-mythical figure Ragnar Lodbrok), who was executed by Aella, the
king of Northumbria. As the popular legend goes, he was cast into a
snake-pit (echoing an earlier legend). For revenge, his sons then
launched an invasion on Northumbria and at least one other Anglo-Saxon
kingdom (I think East Anglia, but I could be wrong about that). They
killed Aella, according to some accounts, by performing a blood-eagle
on him (essentially tying the victim upside down and ripping the lungs
out through the back and leaving them hanging in a fashion that looks a
little like bloody wings).
At some point during the campaign the sons heading the Danish army died
but the army survived under the command of a guy named Guthrum, who
would only be stopped by Alfred the Great of Wessex, who in turn was
then able to gain control of most of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms.
Anyway, this film deals with Ragnar and a highly fictionalized account
of his sons, up to the deaths of Aella and one of Ragnar's sons. The
film represents a pretty tame retelling of the events and a limited
understanding of Viking-Age Scandinavian culture, but is still
entertaining, and I appreciate the fact that it's rooted in an actual
event with some historical significance..
sweetshona1990 watch Thunderball movie
midoandman watch The Pink Panther 2 movie
this film is very good.
theonemz12 watch Cowboy movie
I like this move.
florion69 watch Fatal Rescue movie
dragonslayer ,assasination tango.
regus watch Hellraiser: Deader movie
braveheart, Mel gibson, it's one of the greates movies ever, not only on the action scenes, but the way the carry the story to hollywood it's awsome. .
One of the first viking movies and still one of the best!.
I liked it..
I remember going to the movies to watch The Vikings......It was very exciting, long and emotional. I was only about four years old then...but do remember the movie ...just like it was yesterday. .
How many guys from my generation wanted a Viking funeral after seeing this movie? All of us! Still do. Awesome, fun movie if you were male and born in the 1950s. Pure Esienhower-era escapism. It had fights and tough guys and purpose, all held together with romantic notions about honor. Ron Regan tried to run the country like that, didn't he? You know, where the Commies and the labor unions were the dastardly English. But then G-men traded guns for hostages and then guns for drugs and -- well, it got complicated. This movie makes me feel like a kid again..
Vikings is Smart Stuff
The movie The Vikings is a great example of a work of popular culture
that transcends the basic formula of the genre and becomes something
greater than anyone really may have intended. Through the sheer act of
craft, the film makers have made something more than the sum of its
parts. The central theme of The Vikings is transition,transitions from
a primitive society to a more civilized society. The transitions
include the love theme (physical spiritually), but also the areas of
religion and science. Religion shows a movement from the Vikings'
warrior god, Odin, who rewards mortals with Valhalla if they die with a
sword in their hands, to the Christian god of love and forgiveness
(Einar "lays down his life" for his brother). Katalla is the priestess
of the old, and Father Godwin personifies new ("You are the watchdog of
my fury" says Aella, although the Einar's only line to him is "Take
your magic elsewhere, holy man"). The transition from a world of
ignorance to one of knowledge/science involves the symbols of the fog
and the compass. The fog is an archetypal symbol of ignorance, the
inability to see. People still say that they "were in a fog" when they
mean that they did not know where they were. The compass is the plot
element that suggests the world of knowledge that is looming. The
Vikings are trapped and helpless in the fog. Eric, through Katalla and
Sandpiper, is the brother of knowledge, the one who can see through the
fog. The Vikings deals with the theme of love in a very transitional
momentfrom tough, biological, physical love to a love that merges the
physical with the spiritual ("If our hands are touching, our souls must
be touching"). The central object of love is the character, Morgana,
loved by both brothers, Einar of the old world and Eric of the coming
world, and wanted by the calculating and loveless Aella. The key scene
that defines the Viking view of love is Einar's and Ragnar's discussion
of women and love. Einar asks if his mother loved Ragnar, and Ragnar
replies in a reverie, "Did she love me? I've got her bites and
scratches all over me. Ah! What a woman!" Love for these men is
physical lust. Contrasted with that is the beautiful scene between
Morgana and Eric when they stop on the way back to Aella's castle.
Morgana tries to explain to the man raised as a Viking slave that
physical love is not enough, that the touching of the souls is
necessary. Eric replies that if their hands are touching their souls
must be touching, that the spiritual lies in the physical, that the one
is the manifestation of the other. Eric here plays a role that he plays
throughout the movie; he is the synthesis between the antithetical
worlds of Ragnar and Aella. However, it is Einar who shows the true
nature of brotherly love. He dies, allows himself to be killed, so that
his brother can live. The answer to Eric's question, "Why did he
hesitate?" is central. He waits for Eric to kill him because he knows
that Eric is his brother, and perhaps because he knows that Morgana
loves Eric more, and so he does it for her. This may seem out of
character for such a warrior, but Einar has shown "non-warrior"
reactions before and always involving love. His love of his father is
clearly evident in their every scene together ("And all hail Ragnar's
beard"); but he also shows a love of Morgana that is as much love as a
Viking prince can offerthey forgo the ransom so that he might have
her. Einar's final sacrifice for his brother and for the woman he loves
has the archetypal Christian quality of the hero who dies so that
others can live and thrive and make a better world. His Viking funeral
that ends the film is a funeral for the old way of life and for the old
way of seeing and thinking.
The use of archetypes runs throughout the film. Eric is the "hidden
prince," the man whose royalty is not in his robes but in his character
(Ragnar recognizes this just before he condemns him to the crab pool).
The brothers, Einar and Eric, are the archetypal brothers like those
who date back to Gilgamesh and Enkidu, Cain and Abel, or Castor and
Pollox. They often represent the hunter and farmer or the physical and
spiritual sides of a person. This pattern continues with Einar (the
warrior, the physical side, power) and Eric (the more thoughtful, the
insightful, the owner of the compass). The brother archetype leads us
to other archetypal symbols. A theme of dismemberment runs through the
movie. Einar loses an eye; Eric a hand; the two father figures, Ragnar
and Aella, are torn apart completely like the old worlds they
represented. The eye is an ancient symbol of vision, understanding, and
knowledge. Einar's loss represents his lack of intelligence or
understanding. Eric is missing a hand, the archetypal symbol of power.
The scene that shows this complementary need of the two brothers occurs
when no one will sail with Einar to attack Aella; however, when Eric
joins in the leadershipbrawn and brainis complete. The tower, used by
ancients and Christians to symbolize the inaccessible (or virginity
when it shelters a maiden), holds the princess and must be climbed by
the invading male warrior, and every Freudian can enjoy the symbolism
of the battering ram scene (this is, after all, a very entertaining
One of the real charms of the film is that it is this gem, this
treasure where none was expected. The Vikings is that most delightful
of filmsthe formula genre movie that transcends its own limitations
and becomes something wonderfully entertaining and unforgettable..