Thoughts on Mads Mikkelsen in "Valhalla Rising"

I felt like writing something different today, so I decided to jot down some random words on "Valhalla Rising."  I'm not going to call this a review, since I think this film is kind of impervious to reviews.  If the director cared what anybody else thought, he probably would have picked a whole different career.

Honestly, I always like it when an artist goes ahead and breaks all the rules.  I like it even more when that artist breaks all the rules and it makes all the critics and the entire viewing public FURIOUS.  That's more or less the case with "Valhalla Rising" which, from my understanding, wasn't the world's biggest commercial success.  Nicholas Winding Refn is the director's name.  When I stumble across an artistic personality like him, I always fail to figure out who funds their films.  That information always seems to be hidden somehow.  The reality is that it's probably just the guy's multi-millionaire or billionaire daddy who lets him be a filmmaker so he can have a respectable profession to rattle off when people ask him about his son at fancy parties.  But deep down I hope this guy went through things legitimately, and found some other crazy billionaires who weren't related to him and somehow convinced them to finance his professional life.

More power to the guy, we need more psycho movies like this.

If you have seen "Aguirre: The Wrath of God" you've essentially seen "Valhalla Rising," well, the second part anyway.  For the first part it's as if they discovered an unfinished manuscript to a Robert E. Howard novel and once they got done filming that, they just kind of decided to tack "Aguirre: Wrath of God" on the end.  To kind of brush over the awkwardness of this pairing, they stuck some chapter headings in there.  I believe I read that there are only 120 lines of dialogue in this whole if you add in the chapter headings, that kind of makes it 125 lines of dialogue.

Most of the time the chapter headings are unnecessary and ridiculous.  I mean, the point of the film is to have you a little off-guard.  I don't like when you have this after image of a chapter heading floating around in your mind and telling you exactly what to expect.

A lot (and I mean a LOT) of this film is just Mads Mikkelsen staring off into the distance.  There are few actors who are interesting enough to support a 30 second extended shot of them just looking around.  Remarkably, Mikkelsen manages to more or less pull it off.  Oh, and he doesn't say anything for the entire film, he's mute.

You might remember Mikkelsen as Tristan in that Clive Owen "King Arthur" movie...the one that had Keira Knightly painted blue...remember that (she was Guinevere of course).  Anyway, Mikkelsen was probably the only interesting thing in that entire film.  I keep thinking to myself, "it'd be nice to see that guy who played Tristan in King Arthur in another film."  Trouble is, he's BEEN in a bunch of other films.  He was the bad guy in Casino Royale (kind of wasted there actually...but that was a good film), and he was one of the silly warrior dudes from the terrible remake of "Clash of the Titans" (they should have used the script from the 80's version...that's one of THE significant movies).  He's probably been in other things too...but these roles are forgettable.

Unfortunately, his role as "One-Eye" in "Valhalla Rising" is going to be forgettable too (although he does show off some significant acting chops...only in that he's clearly more interesting to watch than anyone else in the film).  Also, he kills a couple people in probably the most gruesome ways ever to have been filmed...seriously, there's a couple early scenes that are going to make you squirm.  This is just before they head off to a descent down the river and hell and blah, blah, blah.

Essentially, "Valhalla Rising" is the kind of film that college professors love because it's so sparse you can write a convincing paper about how it means...just about anything you want.  My wife, on the other hand, fell asleep.  If that doesn't give you an idea of what this film is like...I don't know what will!


  1. It’s really a great and helpful piece of information. I’m glad that you shared this

    useful information with us. Please keep us informed like
    this. Thanks for

    Here is my weblog ... uprated

  2. Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the pictures on this blog loading?
    I'm trying

    to figure out if its a problem on my end or if it's
    the blog. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
    Here is my page ... Angling

  3. Hello There. I found your blog using msn. This is a really well written
    article. I will

    make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful info.
    Thanks for the

    post. I will definitely return.
    my web site: humate

  4. It is really a nice and helpful piece of information.

    I’m glad that you shared this

    useful info with us. Please keep us informed like this.
    Thank you for

    My web blog -

  5. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  6. What's up mates, how is the whole thing, and what you desire to say regarding this piece of writing, in my view its actually awesome for me.
    My site ... food supplements

  7. Magnificent goods from you, man. I have consider
    your stuff prior to and you're just extremely magnificent. I really like what you have obtained here, really like what you're stating
    and the best way wherein you say it. You make it entertaining and you continue
    to take care of to keep it wise. I can't wait to learn much more from you. This is really a great website.
    my website: money online answering

  8. Hi there, I enjoy reading through your post.
    I like to write a little comment to support you.
    My page

  9. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I really appreciate your efforts and I am waiting for your further
    write ups thanks once again.
    Also visit my web page -

  10. Great work! This is the kind of information that
    are meant to be shared around the net. Disgrace on Google for now not positioning
    this submit higher! Come on over and talk over
    with my site . Thank you =)
    My blog post

  11. What's up mates, its wonderful piece of writing on the topic of tutoringand fully explained, keep it up all the time.

    my blog post pointclick Windows comparison shopping method

  12. great points altogether, you just received a new reader.
    What might you suggest in regards to your

    publish that you simply made a few days in the past?
    Any sure?

    My web blog:

  13. Howdy! I'm at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone

    4! Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your

    posts! Carry on the great work!
    Also visit my blog post -

  14. Good blog! I really love how it is easy on my eyes and the
    data are well written.

    I am wondering how I might be notified when a new post has been made.
    I've subscribed

    to your RSS feed which must do the trick! Have a great day!
    My website ...

  15. This web site definitely has all of the information I wanted concerning this subject and didn't know who to ask.

    my web page :: louis vuitton bags outlet

  16. I like the valuable information you provide in your articles.
    I will bookmark your weblog and check again here frequently.
    I am quite certain I'll learn many new stuff right here! Good luck for the next!

    my page - fresh coffee beans

  17. Hi there! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a

    collection of volunteers and starting a new project in a community in the same niche.
    Your blog

    provided us useful information to work on. You have done a marvellous job!
    Here is my web blog ;

  18. Do you have a spam problem on this blog; I also am a blogger, and I was wanting to know your situation; we have developed some nice practices and we are looking to
    swap solutions with other folks, why not shoot me an
    e-mail if interested.

    Here is my web site :: クリスチャンルブタン

  19. I'm truly enjoying the design and layout of your site. It's a
    very easy on the eyes which makes it much more pleasant for me to come here and visit more often.
    Did you hire out a designer to create your theme? Excellent work!

    My web-site ... クリスチャンルブタン

  20. I'm amazed, I must say. Rarely do I come across a blog that's equally educative and amusing, and let me tell
    you, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is
    something not enough folks are speaking intelligently about.
    I'm very happy that I stumbled across this during my search for something regarding this.

    Here is my web-site ... ミュウミュウ

  21. Link exchange is nothing else however it is just placing the other person's weblog link on your page at appropriate place and other person will also do same in support of you.

    My weblog -

  22. I am regular reader, how are you everybody? This post posted at
    this web site is really pleasant.

    Look at my page: ミュウミュウ

  23. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.