This premiere took place just before the New year, and now the film is all over Russia like a steam roller. It’s called “Viking” in it from time to time sound isolated Swedish phrase, including in the performance of Yakima Natterqvist (Joakim Nätterqvist), which has here the role of the second plan. Putin praises the film, the Russian critics have written devastating reviews.
“What movie! It shows how a monster can become a man, contritely,” says 68-year-old Lyudmila Marchenko, engineer. She is almost giddy when she comes out of the cinema at the Moscow cinema “October” after the two-hour preview of “Viking”.
To become better through repentance and repentance — Russian theme, which he loved Dostoyevsky. In the movie “Viking” we are talking about Vladimir of Kiev, a man who in terms of our time would be called, most likely, commander. He killed his brother, took to himself a force of wives and waged bloody wars by which he, in the end, managed to neutralize all enemies. At the end of the 900 years he baptized the Kievan Rus, the state that consists of separate principalities, located on the territory of Russia and Ukraine.
In Ukraine, this historical figure called Volodimir, believing him to be the Ukrainian leader. In Russia, Vladimir is considered Russian and a few weeks ago, has erected his statue in Central Moscow. The fact that the premiere of “Viking” is very carefully covered in the media, as well as what it looked Vladimir Putin in the company of the Minister of culture Vladimir Medinsky, can be regarded as a manifestation of Russia’s position in this dispute.
The caveat is that to argue about it at all is pointless, because neither Ukraine, nor Russia did not exist in 900 years, when Prince Vladimir decided to choose Orthodox Christianity as the state religion for his country. (He thought also about Judaism and Islam, but the Muslim prohibition on alcohol was not for him).
“Viking” is a huge project, now praise in every way on all state TV channels. It cost more than a billion rubles (about 160 million Swedish kronor) and starred with significant support from the state. Now, it has been shown in all theaters from Moscow to Vladivostok. In the first week the film collected an amount corresponding to 112 million kroons, which was a record for the Russian film production.
Russian critics gave the film a absolutely devastating evaluation almost unanimously, because they believe that it is full of historical errors, too many bloody special effects, and generally it is flat and banal.
“Knowing the history of at least three plus the viewer nothing but shame for the creators of what is happening on the screen, this film does not cause” — says Yegor Kholmogorov in the newspaper “Culture”.
Among other things, critics draw attention to the fact that the film mixed up with someone who has allied, soldiers wear helmets and clothing that was not in the middle ages, and both factions of the people — the Pechenegs and the Romans are shown historically inaccurate. The name “Viking” is also inappropriate, as the Northmen from Scandinavia, who inhabited the region called Vikings, not Vikings.
The film is full of special effects that became characteristic of Russian films in recent years. They, as well as exciting battles and the starring Danila Kozlovsky, who is called the new Russian sex symbol, and attract visitors. But Ekaterina Arkhipova, who I met in a cinema “October” says that they would prefer more dialogue.
“We are used to it in Russian movies. Conversations, dialogues. And in the “Viking” everything is based only on feelings. The theme is deep, it is about the baptism of Rus. But I would prefer more text and less meat and blood,” says 30-year-old doctor Arkhipov.
“I would love to see it again”
But President Putin liked the movie. “I would love to see it again,” he said after watching the film in the company of the Minister of culture Vladimir Medinsky.
After he published “Leviathan”, the first Russian film in many years, nominated for an Oscar in 2015, Medinsky said that the only “Patriotic films” will receive state support. “Leviathan”, directed by Andrey Zvyagintsev, tells the story of corruption and the rotten legal system of modern Russia. Medina felt that the film creates the wrong image of the country. Viking, and he considers as most successful the result is a new cinematic policy.
Incidentally, in the new film are scattered phrases in Swedish and even Norwegian. Vladimir calls on the help of the Vikings from the far North to help him defeat the enemies. Their leader is played by a Swede Joakim Natterqvist.
That’s just the role of those Vikings in the movie is by and large to the eating of Amanita and unintelligible yelling.