Friday — May 27th, 2022: Well well well, another fantastic week in the books! [READ MORE]


The Northman


🎙️ EPISODE 463: 05.10.22

When I heard that Robert Eggers was doing a viking revenge movie with THAT CAST, I was — naturally — excited. And then, little by little, things started to peck away at that excitement: the generic movie poster, the overtly mainstream trailer, and so on. Was this really the film where Eggers went populist, went for the jugular of the Marvel-obsessed "I like big shiny things!" masses? Or were we being led on by a trick of marketing? Well, having just seen the picture on the BIG big screen (Regal's IMAX Junior, "RPX"), I can say that it's about a 50/50 split. And depending on what your tastes are, that's not necessarily a bad thing at all. It was such an obvious pivot away from the insular world of the breathtaking, genius (easily in my Top 5 of the 2010s) , but it retained enough weirdness to offset the scale of its (apparent) asipirations.
The bottom line is this: if you're gonna make a movie with a price tag like this, it's expected to perform as such. Or you're not going to be making too many more on that level. This is probably fine in the end, and I honestly don't think there was a way (either in the shoot, or the edit) where this could have been transformed into a crowd-pleaser here in 2022. Sure, maybe if some "I.P." was force-fed into the storyline, then viewers would have forgiven the less tangible elements, like the dialect and some of the harsher ultraviolence. That anyone feels the need to 'apologize' for that or any of that is whole other can of worms. And that I feel the need to address any of this in this in the first place is sorta part of a larger, seemingly unavoidable 'problem' with modern cinema.

But I (literally) digress. On a plainly visceral level, I appreciated that this movie was big and unrelenting in a way that almost all movies aren't anymore (those that are worth a damn, anyway). It's definitely not perfect, but it really never had a chance to be.


The Northman is a 2022 American epic historical fiction film directed by Robert Eggers, who co-wrote the screenplay with Sjón. Based on the legend of Amleth, the film stars co-producer Alexander Skarsgård, Nicole Kidman, Claes Bang, Anya Taylor-Joy, Ethan Hawke, Björk, and Willem Dafoe. The plot follows Amleth, a Viking prince who sets out on a quest to avenge the murder of his father. It was released on March 28, 2022.


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