VyceVictus’s review published on Letterboxd:
Direct comparisons to other films probably won’t work in the case of describing the THE NORTHMAN since it’s just HAMLET: ORIGINS i.e. a take on classic source material made famous throughout history in different forms. I enjoyed it overall and it has impressive moments, but this might be the most cold and sterile barbarian flick I’ve ever seen.
It sounds weird to call it “sterile” since everyone’s all muddy and there's quite a bit if blood but I dunno…someone mentioned a certain flat digital aesthetic in recent films over the years. I don’t know how THE NORTHMAN was filmed but I got that sensation from it.
If anything, the best/funniest thing about that whole “THE NORTHMAN promotes white supremacy through Viking imagery” bullshit is how the movie actually shows them as ignorantly, detrimentally violent while still taking their religion/customs seriously. A movie about Laconia/The Spartans with this tone and focus on historical accuracy would be a fascinating experiment.