Usually I tend to stick to the more awful old movies, as you might have guessed from previous reviews. But today I made an exception and watched what some might call a classic of epic proportions, The Vikings.
To be frank, story wise I don't think The Vikings is as epic as some people which recommended it told me it would be. Although somewhat grand in scale, it comes nowhere near Spartacus or Ben Hur. I know I don't have much else to compare it with, but it all felt a bit bland. The battle at the end however, and especially the sword fight on the tower, is one of the best showdowns I've seen thus far.
The lack of story is however quickly forgotten because of the excellent acting. Kirk Douglas plays the part of Viking very convincing, who because of his actions as Einar you'll love and hate at the same time. Everybody else around him also give their best and put down some very solid characters.
But I think that the most praise for this movie, has to go to all the people behind the camera. From the looks of it they went very far to make everything look as authentic as possible. From the wardrobes to the sets, it all looks top-notch and made with great care. And add the great locations they used in Norway and Croatia and you have a visually stunning movie.
Yes, I also have to admit that The Vikings is a must watch if you like the old epics. Just don't expect to be swept away by its story.
Title: The Vikings
Genre: Action / Adventure
Duration: 114 minutes
Director: Richard Fleisher
Starring: Kirk Douglas, Ernest Borgnine & Tony Curtis
In the Middle Ages, Viking warriors continue to raid the English coast. In one such raid the Viking leader Ragnar kills the English king and forces himself on the Queen. With the King dead, his brother takes the throne but unknown to anyone but a trusted servant, the Queen is now with child. In order to protect the boy, he is sent away to be raised in safety away from the new King. Twenty years later, the Vikings under are still raiding England and they now have an Englishman, Egbert, making maps of the English coast for them. Ragnar has a son, Einar, a lusty warrior who takes what he wants when he wants it. They also have a slave, Eric, taken prisoner as an infant. Egbert realizes from a necklace Eric wears that he is the son of the Queen and is Einar's half-brother. When they kidnap Morgana, a Welsh beauty and the English King's betrothed, the stage is set for an inevitable clash between the half-brothers and with the reigning English King.