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Valhalla Rising / Le guerrier silencieux (Bilingual)

Mads Mikkelsen , Maarten Stevenson , Nicolas Winding Refn    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 12.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Product Description

1000 AD, for years, One Eye, a mute warrior of supernatural strength, has been held prisoner by the Norse chieftain Barde. Aided by Are, a boy slave, One Eye slays his captor and together he and Are escape, beginning a journey into the heart of darkness. On their flight, One Eye and Are board a Viking vessel, but the ship is soon engulfed by an endless fog that clears only as the crew sights an unknown land. As the new world reveals its secrets and the Vikings confront their terrible and bloody fate, One Eye discovers his true self.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Strange, slow - felt like a dream Nov. 30 2010
By Cozy Evenings with a Book TOP 500 REVIEWER
The main character, "One Eye", is being used to make money as a fighter. He's always cuffed and lives in a cage. He only has one good eye and is a mute. Eventually he kills his guards and goes free. The warrior travels with a boy who used to feed him when he was a fighter and they both join Christian crusaders on their way to Jerusalem. On the way they make port at an island where the movie takes its final conclusion.

The movie mostly has no music and there's not much talking. The violence is at times brutal but there's not much action either. This is the type of filming where they focus on an actor's face for 1 minute and they show a river for 5 minutes. It felt like a dream while i was watching it - very slow development. But somehow in the end you appreciate the movie and the main character and everything that he went through. If you're one of those people that likes slow and a bit strange movies then give this a go but if you're used to Hollywood and non-stop action then this movie is not for you. I enjoyed it at times and at times i found myself falling asleep but i dont regret watching the entire movie.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow but oddly interesting June 11 2011
This was mis sold in the UK, pretending to be a Viking epic and has recieved harsh criticism for it. At least in Canada it has been more honest, so is it any good really?

It is an unusual film a sort of Ingmar Bergman meets Derek Jarman only with a better camera. It is supposed to be a fantasy and as such it is hard to work out what the actual plot is. Starring Mads Mikkelsen as a one eyed sort of prize fighter, he is treated like an animal; only being let out for fights to the death. He apparently is owned by Barde(I got that from the cover), who is a wealthy Scotsman who obtained him for his fighting skills. If he is such a lethal fighting machine, how was he ever caught?

Any way he escapes; killing everyone except a young lad who comes along and appears to be able to understand the mute `One Eye'. I thought it was going to be a Christian versus Pagan type thing as Christianity is a thread throughout the film. The old sort of Christianity mind, crusading and killing; not the modern sort of caring and turning the other cheek etc. They meet up with some would be crusaders and then go off on a strange voyage to either the Holy Land of to establish a New Jerusalem.

This is a slow, often claustrophobic, stylish and atmospheric film. Writer and director Nicholas Winding Refn clearly knew what he wanted to create; the studio I think had different ideas. He uses music and imagery to drive the narrative forward and whilst it works, the swift and violent changes in pace -there are snippets of violent flask backs and/or premonitions- actually break your concentration. It is like being hooked and somehow getting off the line.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Different in the best way Jan. 22 2011
The mood set by the pacing, cast, visuals and audio, its so engrossing!

But my enthusiasm aside, be careful, here are what I consider to be some important considerations when you are preparing to watch it.

1>Watch it ALONE at least once, especially the first time.
Also, while we do have a nice home theater system in the living room, I watched this with home theater headphones cranked up to really bring myself into that world.

2>Expectation going in -If you are looking for a movie that spells it out in familiar letters that everyone can see and talk about, you'll probably be painfully bored.

You have to meet this half way, in terms of audience effort its more like a painting than a film. The movie definitely puts you on a suggestive path where the mood, minimal dialogue and situations give plenty of room for your own powers of perception and interpretation to engage, which have hopefully been sharpened by your interests in human nature and history.

3>Energy level and frame of mind -I made the mistake on my first attempt to watch this late at night as a second movie. I had to stop a little less than half way through. So my recommendation is to watch it earlier than later in the night, when you are in one of your more reflective serious moods. And if you are going to indulge in legal intoxicants to 'expand your mind', it can enhance the experience, but drink responsibly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
There seems to be a lot of negative reviews on what I thought was a well done film. In this review I will attempt to give it a fair treatment based on how it impacted me. This film is not high quality art like something from the French new wave. Neither is this film another 'artsy' film which attempts to be 'deep' while lacking any substantive message. Furthermore, this film is not another film like Zack Snyder's '300'. Valhalla Rising is kind of its own thing, having more substance than those 'artsy' films while falling short of being a truly phenomenal film. Lacking any education in art or psychology I can only comment on the film based on what I bring to it.

The film is divided into six different chapters, beginning with 'Wrath' and ending with 'Sacrifice'. Right from the beginning, this division into different thematic chapters should make it obvious that Valhalla Rising is not an action film. The film follows a one eyed warrior; the first half deals with his escape from captivity by pagans and his revenge on these pagans. The second half of the film deals with him joining a group of crusaders and their journey to Jerusalem. This journey does not take them to Jerusalem and the last two chapters 'Hell' and 'Sacrifice' are basically surreal portrayals of the breakup of this company. The film features very little dialogue, instead relying on imagery and closeups of the characters.

The message which the director seems to be giving is a bit unclear despite effective use of mood and imagery. I think the view present in the ambiance of the film was obvious: human beings are warlike, religion does not mitigate man's warlike nature and salvation comes in embracing death and the reality of war. However, this interpretation is largely rooted in my own academic background.
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Unbelievable
This is the most horrible movie I've ever watched. Slow doesn't even begin to describe it, add inexplicable, and bazaar. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Lorelei Lee
5.0 out of 5 stars The is a masterful art house film. It is beautiful to look at -...
A small masterpiece of cinema. Beautifully framed and shot. Slow paced, thoughtful, then explosive. Raw and gorgeous. Read more
Published 3 months ago by RICHARD L BREY
4.0 out of 5 stars Not for everyone
This movie probably isn't for everyone - if you watched the trailer you'd think you were in for an action movie - and you'd be wrong. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Grouse
5.0 out of 5 stars If You Can't See The Beauty You Don't Have Love..
Now I'm going to go way over the top and say,to be or not to be,that's the problem,
if this movie doesn't tickle your fancy that's because you just can't see the depth of... Read more
Published 8 months ago by trek fan
1.0 out of 5 stars don't buy
Don't buy this movie. Very slow and not entertaining. Probably director was all the time in bad mood. Idiotic movie with idiotic end.
Published 11 months ago by Kevin Elson
4.0 out of 5 stars Slow, dark
Very little speaking in this movie, mostly dark images & brutality. Doesn't leave you hollow like The Road [Blu-ray], but certainly not the usual Hollywood fare - the tale is told... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Dan
3.0 out of 5 stars Visually interesting
This film is not really "my cup-of-tea" as far as story. The violence is a bit over the top for me also however I appreciate the cinematography. Read more
Published on Nov. 14 2011 by nobody
1.0 out of 5 stars What can be said about nothing?
I'm just going to agree with all the other bad reviews of this movie. It's boring, absurd, uninspired and empty of any merit. Read more
Published on Oct. 5 2011 by Anglobotomy
1.0 out of 5 stars Valhalla Rising
This is a very poor movie. Plot starts no where, does not develop, and ends no where.
We are lead to believe that the original setting is in the Highlands of Scotland at the... Read more
Published on March 24 2011 by David Repetowsky
1.0 out of 5 stars Not fascinating, not mesmerizing
Nothing about this film was fascinating or mesmerizing. You keep watching it only in the hope that something is going to make it worthwhile. Read more
Published on Dec 27 2010 by Michele Camacho
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