User Score
5.6

Mixed or average reviews- based on 77 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 77
  2. Negative: 23 out of 77

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  1. Jul 21, 2014
    4
    Creepy film about a Killer from 1000 years ago in the Viking Mountains, who finds some Christian Crusaders looking to find Jerusalem but after a Mist find America...

    The feel of the film is more Real, like from the 70's, and the scariness of new lands and strange things is inherent in the film...

    VERDICT: IT WAS REAL/45 OUT OF 100
  2. Jul 19, 2014
    7
    I'm pretty hard on movies in general. I watched it 4 times, and loved it more each time. The grit, the pacing, the plot twists. It is kick ass good. Such boldness, such warrior resolve. Beautiful.
  3. Jun 22, 2014
    2
    A very dull film. Very slow and just doesn't really move anywhere. The setting and the shots of the landscapes is just about the only thing worth noting in this film.
    The plot is very poor and just doesn't engross me as nothing really happens and the acting itself is not believable.
    So much potential as it looks like they drew up what could of been an interesting set of characters but
    they seem to fail to exploit it. I also do not understand how people can call this a masterpiece.

    Would of been better off as a documentary on landscapes and fog.
    Expand
  4. Nov 16, 2013
    8
    This is one of the most underrated movie and I'm not surprised that people voted this badly, likewise some of the great critics, because is so stunning, is so suggestive and makes you asking continually "What the hell Am I watching? Where's the plot Than you slowly understand and you'll appreciate all the shades of this masterpiece Nicolas Winding Refn made a great job, Mads was simply perfect
  5. Jun 22, 2013
    7
    This film put me much in mind of Terrence Malick’s ‘The New World’ (2005) but nothing like as long and drawn out. I found it very atmospheric with the sound of the wind putting an edge on the, already bleak, visuals. There are moments of extreme violence but these are quite brief and I didn’t find them over the top or overly explicit. For a character that has no dialogue at all, I thought Mads Mikkelsen did a great job in conveying the emotions his character was going through. He’s quite stoic but you can see the rage underneath; really well done. I also very much liked the music by Peter Kyed and Peter Peter, there’s not much, but it really helps things move along, particularly towards the end. Over all, I found it quite a compelling watch but very atmospheric. Maybe too much atmosphere for some maybe, but worth sticking with until the end.

    SteelMonster’s verdict: RECOMMENDED

    My score: 6.7/10
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  6. Jun 17, 2013
    8
    Otherworldly, artful and utterly symbolic; an imposing, monolithic soundtrack brutalizes the ears whilst the eyes are treated to superb cinematography, framing and beautiful locations.
  7. May 27, 2013
    6
    Posted on 5/19/13 06:55 PM
    I don't know I feel about this film I really like the way Refn films violence you know stylish and all i I even like the silence in his films. But this film borders the line between a slow pace and boring, I'll give it 3 and a half stars just because I admire the way he made the film have a certain feel to it ,a violent Opera is the best way to describe it.
  8. Jul 3, 2012
    10
    You must appreciate the art of film making and foreign film to appreciate this one , which i did very much. I critic if anyone actually watched this movie or much less any film without the hollywood circle.
  9. Apr 28, 2012
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I first watched "Valhalla Rising" on Netflix. I came across it while browsing the Foreign Films genre and I thought the cover looked cool, plus the small description sounded interesting. I watched it right before bed, and after it was over I was not sure if I liked it or not. Still, something about it stuck with me. The next morning, I recalled the brief, violent action sequences and the haunting, lonely quality of the film and I wanted to watch it again. I didn't get the chance for a week or so. This time, for whatever reason, I was taken into the movie. It opened on the grey, desolate Scottish plains, and I could actually feel the biting wind and the cold mist on my face. I felt the brutality and desperate rage of the main character, One-Eye, as he was dragged from place to place by his captors and forced to fight for their entertainment. I felt the cruel elation as he escaped through bloody surprise and ingenuity, and then came the unease as he found himself amidst a group of Christians bound for the Holy Land. The claustrophobic boat ride across an endless, cursed sea was thought provoking and strange, as was their landing on the shore of an unknown land of ghosts and savages. "Valhalla Rising" is not a movie I would watch with my parents or girlfriend, or a group of friends. I think it is best watched alone, in the dark, and on a day when you feel down in the dumps. To qualify, this is the viewing scenario that worked best for me, I am not advocating it as the "only" way to watch the film. These were merely the circumstances that allowed me to fully enter the barren and bleak world that Refn has created. All in all, I think it is a good movie. I would not call it a great movie, but it is certainly a force to be reckoned with if you are in the right frame of mind. Expand
  10. Mar 28, 2012
    4
    It's one of those films that you feel cheated by when the credits roll. The time invested does not seem worth it even though there were some good elements in the film. Visually it is striking and full of depth. Thematically it is dull. Because the film demands itself to be interpreted because of nearly every word of it's dialogue being thematic the film should be expected to be deep and full of depth. However it is not. The film try's to make you like it by being confused by it but when you break it down there is not much to it unlike Hezog's aguirre which is quite similar to this film in story themes and visuals in a way. Expand
  11. Mar 20, 2012
    8
    I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. Given the (admittedly terrible) title, I expected a mindless actionfest with blood, guts, and plenty of Viking action. Instead, I got a moody little gem that didn't sacrifice action for art. There's some beautiful, bleak cinematography in this movie, and the overall style is reminiscent of a Western. Surreal interludes break up the gritty realism as well. Worth a look, but it should probably be watched alone. Expand
  12. Feb 19, 2012
    10
    One of the best movies i've seen. A complex and relaxing masterpiece, with a great ambience and great music. Mads Mikkelsen does a great performance, and the ending is beautiful. Pure cinema.
  13. Jan 5, 2012
    9
    Not everyone will understand or appreciate this movie; it's definitely not for everyone. Valhalla Rising is rife with Norse mythology and interesting metaphors (caveat emptor: the metaphors will be lost on those who lack understanding or knowledge of Norse culture and mythology and the history of the time period). The action and landscape sequences are beautifully shot; albeit the movie moves at a pace slower than many current movie-goers can handle. Overall a great commentary on Christianity's influence on pagan cultures and its misuse of religion to further misguided conversions of those cultures it deemed "pagan" and uncivilized. The irony of the ending is likely lost on many viewers as well. Expand
  14. Dec 18, 2011
    10
    One of the best films I have ever, ever watched. The lack of dialogue gives much time for you to immerse yourself into a dreamlike sequence and let your mind ponder on what is occurring. Very abstract, very different, VERY visually compelling, and the acting was top notch. It was also extremely realistic, portraying the time period perfectly. I felt like I was watching a moving painting. Thank you, Netflix. Expand
  15. Oct 11, 2011
    8
    Nicholas Winding Refn's "Valhalla Rising" is quite, suspenseful, profound, and powerful. Its a movie strongly for the sophisticated audiences due to its silent dialogue and mind blowing scenes. I actually liked the smart director for providing us such viking movie in a time of explosions and guns. Kudos!!!
  16. Feb 27, 2011
    1
    This movie made me want to cry, and not in a good way. Agonizingly slow, you get the feeling that the director wants you to suffer as a viewer and not in the vicarious way. No, you actually sit there and suffer, because the human need to foster the flame of hope wants you to believe that the movie will actually improve, but it never does. The filming however, is expertly done. The End.
  17. Jan 24, 2011
    0
    This is an exceptionally terrible film. Artsy without being artful, devoid of any plot or character development, "Rising" ultimately manages to be an overwhelmingly pretentious waste of otherwise good actors' time. The film fails to produce any thoughtful musings on religion, mankind, and nationhood. Watch Planet Earth if you have a jones for beautiful nature cinematography, because this film offers nothing else. Expand
  18. Jan 5, 2011
    2
    About as dormant, dreary, drowsy, dallying, dim, and dead a Viking portrayal could be depicted. Dreadfully poor lighting amidst complete and utter darkness. If you haven't caught on by now, than your sloooooow of mind is the perfect complement to this disaster. Exaggerated "D's" only fitting for a "D" movie. Enjoy!
  19. Dec 22, 2010
    2
    Ok, I like high concept movies that lack a traditional ending and are hard to predict. That being said I was infuriatingly frustrated by the pace of this movie. The cinematography was amazing the characters were well acted. If you took the One-Eye character and put him in a different movie I'd watch it and the sequel. There were brief action sequences with a ton of dramatic music followed by characters staring at each other and then staring at the scenery for what felt like a half hour at a time, it felt like tension was being built for no reason. I wanted desperately to like this movie and even more desperately for something, anything to happen during the endless back and forth cut aways between characters. 2/10 Expand
  20. Aug 27, 2010
    8
    Viking movies used to mean horned helmets, Kirk Douglas, mead and fiery funerals at sea. This, however, is ultra brutal art house cinema with deliberately glacial pacing and an overwhelming sense of doom. Think intensely anti-Christian Tarkovsky on LSD in a blender full of blood and guts poured slowly over some of the most beautiful Nordic landscapes ever to grace a movie screen accompanied by the cold sounds of instrumental post-metal. I had almost no idea what was going on, but I was mesmerised the whole time. It is fringe, it is different, it is something you'll either love or hate. Collapse
Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 15
  2. Negative: 2 out of 15
  1. Reviewed by: Kim Newman
    80
    Valhalla Rising gets into your mind and stays there. You can argue what, if anything, it's trying to say, but it is impressive cinema.
  2. When it comes to crazy, violent, semidelirious, testosterone-laden, proto-Viking tales about a mute visionary one-eyed warrior who breaks skulls, Valhalla Rising is pretty great.
  3. 25
    Valhalla Rising is nothing more than an updated version of the kind of time-honored Hollywood Viking movie Kirk Douglas used to do in his sleep, which means lots of inhuman, bone-crunching violence and no plot.