Aydan Nolan’s review published on Letterboxd:
I love Eggers' previous two, the viking/norse mythological stuff is right up my alley, and generally speaking I am just so fucking in for revenge stories. So it's only natural that I found The Northman to be fucking incredible. This is the exact type of quest for vengeance I am always wanting, and boy oh boy does this deliver.
No point in mincing words, I was on board immediately within that first chapter and the further along we got, the more into the film I found myself; completely gripped and fixated to the path of destruction we find ourselves licking our lips for. There are those familiar moments of abstract storytelling but I was surprised and actually a little relieved at how no-nonsense this was.
One thing I just want to say super quick is that when it comes to revenge movies, I really don't think they need an abundance of layers or subversion or whatever it is that would be more common and more preferred in other genres. The idea of "character goes through bad thing and now they want revenge" is such a simple and exciting premise that 99 times out of 100, that simplicity is really all that's necessary. There is so much to The Witch and especially The Lighthouse, that a straightforward tale of nordic vengeance is enough, and yet diluting The Northman to that skeletal idea would be flat out wrong too.
The film is shot incredibly and moves as well as any of his films, particularly many oners that had me by the balls. The score is tight and the sound design is fantastic, which is utilized yet again to achieve such a strong atmosphere with the many "otherworldly" elements that permeate through the screen. Perhaps there's a version of this film that embraces that familiar Eggers weirdness, but I think it's already doing a great job of mixing that in with the traditional revenge narrative. At the end of the day this is a film of a dude just being a dude trying to kill another dude, and that's really all that cinema is about.
The biggest weight off my shoulders for seeing this in cinemas before it leaves and I'm so fucking thrilled to have experienced it on that big screen. I can't wait to revisit and go absolutely feral which I'm intending on being as asap as possible. Could very well be my favourite from the Egghead and as always, Willem is the MVP of this whole thing. Great friggin flick!