Tim Timmermans’s review published on Letterboxd:
"Always live without fear, for your fate is set and you cannot escape it!"
Something is rotten in the state of....Iceland?!
Young Amleth witnesses how his uncle Fjölnir kills his father, King Aurvandil, and kidnaps his mother, Queen Gudrün. Amleth flees, but swears to avenge his father and rescue his mother. Years later a seeress ignites a spark of hatred in him and sends him on his way to fulfill his prophecy of retribution.
'The Northman' is an epic tale based on the story of Prince Amleth of Jutland, an old Icelandic saga from the ninth or 10th century, which was a source of inspiration for Shakespeare's Hamlet, which in its place influenced a ton of movies! So it's a familiar story of betrayal and revenge for many of us.
'The Northman' is very bombastic, a tonal switch from Egger's earlier 'The Lighthouse' and 'VVitch'. This also makes it his most accessible movie yet. I prefer the mentioned "slowburners" over this though. One thing that also bothered me a bit, was the score. The quality of it was great, but I dislike that throat singing is used so much in films lately to give off an exotic vibe (I'm looking at you too 'Dune'!). Throat singing has got very little to do with Iceland, as do the Mouth Harp, Bagpipes and the Igil (a used string instrument originating, like the throat singing, from Tuva, which is situated between Siberia and China).