VALHALLA RISING (Nicolas Winding Refn)

VALHALLA RISING isn't for everybody. At once it is a meditative, atmospheric and brutish period film where man clashes with nature. On the other hand it is also a bizarre and tedious drama about inhumanity. (Yes, inhumanity!)

Even with no dialogue, Mads Mikkelsen is compelling as One-Eye, a warrior who escapes from captivity and travels with a band of Christian crusaders to the Holy Land. With a young boy by his side, One-Eye navigates through harsh terrain, rough waters and vicious men. Eventually, he can also see the future through visions.

Divided into six parts (Lars Von Trier?) VALHALLA RISING succeeds as a brutal epic that is surprisingly treats its antihero with sincerity. Where it fails though is that in its desire to tell its tale, the film becomes too preoccupied with obscurity that it alienates the viewer.



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