Movie Review: Vikingdom (2013, Dir. Yusry Abd Halim)

Vikingdom (2013) Movie Review I think I got into Dungeons & Dragons back in the sixth grade, hearing about it for the first time in Dynamite magazine, although I didn’t really start playing it until I got into my sophomore year of high school. Because of this, I have a weakness for medieval fantasy movies and there have been a ton of them that reminded me of D&D. They even started making movies based on Dungeons & Dragons; unfortunately, they have all been, for the most part, lackluster.

Peter Jackson’s Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit adaptations are the best when it comes to being D&D inspired. And then there’s Vikingdom. The trailer was good enough for me to want to see it. Like with most of these fantasy flicks, it had me reminiscing about my D&D times. The movie, however, is a different story.

Vikingdom is about Eirick (Dominic Purcell) who dies on a battlefield and then is resurrected by a Goddess. Years later a God pays him a visit in his secluded cabin in the woods and tells him he needs his help in stopping Thor, who wants to create some kind of dominion on earth and rule over mankind. To do this he must retrieve Odin’s Horn and blow it, which will destroy Thor’s mortal form and send him back to Asgard.

I could tell from the opening credits that I wasn’t going to like this movie. The music is modern rock and the credits themselves were very CGI-ish. The whole movie wants to be something akin to 300 (2007); it all looks like it’s filmed in front of a green-screen on a sound stage, with very little on location shooting. The problem is the artificial nature of the film shows painfully through. The CGI looks like CGI.

Aside from that, it was little things, like Purcell using an American voice to play a Viking, the usage of the word, ‘fuck,’ which had me wondering if that particular curse word had been invented that far back, and in a village that was covered with snow, where the snow was still falling, no one was dressed appropriately that kept pulling me out of the movie.

There is a slight vibe to the whole proceedings that had me thinking about that series, Hercules, The Legendary Journeys. Not as cheesy but enough to bring it to mind.

Epic Pictures releases the movie on DVD only with a very nice 1.85:1 transfer and an English 5.1 surround sound track. There are some extras with ‘Making Of Vikingdom’ (25 minutes) being the core. It’s actually called, ‘The Art Of Vikingdom’ and it appears to be a TV special, with breaks that hint at it. I was surprised to see there actually was location shooting. Based on what I saw in the movie it looked like a complete green-screen based movie with some sound stages posing as outdoor sets augmented by CGI. You also get a Theatrical Trailer, a Teaser, a TV Spot and a MOJO—Dark Clouds music video.

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