The Northman

The Northman is a cinematic depiction of Viking society in the late ninth century. Co-written and directed by Robert Eggers (who previously directed two horror movies) and starring Alexander Skarsgård (who had long been interested in Viking history and mythology and was instrumental in getting Eggers involved), it is a refreshing attempt at historical realism in an age where having an all-White cast is seen as culturally subversive. Worse for our current cultural literati, it provides a positive portrayal of what would be seen as extreme “toxic” masculinity among White men at a time when emasculated White men are common throughout the media. Surprisingly perhaps, the film has gotten excellent mainstream reviews, with many commenting on its stunning visual qualities (it was filmed in Northern Ireland) and its gripping storyline. I completely agree. It kept me enthralled from beginning to end. If you want to see the movie, I suggest not reading this until after you’ve seen it. Lots of plot giveaways.

What interests me here is how accurately the film comports with Viking culture as presented as a prototypical Indo-European culture in Chapter 2 of my book, Individualism and the Western Liberal Tradition.

Swearing an Oath

Fundamentally, The Northman is a tale of revenge—a common enough human emotion, but here with the added twist that Amleth (the main character, played by Skarsgård) has sworn an oath to avenge his father, King Aurvandill. Aurvandill had been killed by his brother, Amleth’s uncle Fjölnir who then seized the king’s wife and property.  Revenge is thus Amleth’s all-encompassing duty.

It is difficult for us to imagine the importance and seriousness of swearing a public oath in a religious ceremony in traditional Indo-European (I-E) culture. I-E culture was fundamentally individualist—one of the two powerful strands of Western European individualism, along with northern hunter-gatherers. And within I-E cultures, reputation, in this case as an 0ath-keeper) is far more important than kinship in determining one’s status. Thus avenging his father is an absolute, religiously tinged duty, far more important than, say, seeking a quiet family life. Duty above all else.  At the end of the movie, Amleth has succeeded in escaping his uncle’s farm where he and others had been held as slaves and after killing many of his uncle’s people, including his eldest son Thorir, his wife (Amleth’s mother, played by Nicole Kidman), and her young son by Fjölnir, Gunnar. But he hadn’t killed his uncle, so he goes back to his uncle’s farm for the final confrontation, despite earnest pleading from his pregnant (with twins) wife to accompany her to safety among anther branch of Amleth’s kin.

Oaths were a central component of the Männerbund (other terms: korios, comitatus), “the warrior brotherhood bound by oath to one another and to their ancestors during a ritually mandated raid.”[2] The formation of voluntary war-bands held together by oaths, camaraderie, and a common self-interest was a fundamental characteristic of these chiefdoms. This was a time when social status and rank were still openly determined by one’s heroic deeds and by the number of followers or clients one could attract and retain.[4]

In the absence of kinship ties, reputation becomes the standard for relationships. Andrew Fraser notes that oath-taking was and remains a peculiarly English pre-occupation, so much so that “the commonplace spectacle of Third World immigrants reciting oaths of allegiance at naturalization ceremonies is calculated to warm the hearts of WASPs committed heart and soul to the constitutionalist creed of civic nationalism.” Oath-taking is a public affirmation that is fundamentally about one’s reputation. It is, of course, a bit of WASP egoism to assume other peoples have a similar sense of public trustworthiness:

WASPs are trusting souls. For that very reason they can be exploited easily by those who promise one thing and do another. … Mass Third World immigration imposes enormous risks upon Anglo-Saxon societies grounded in unique patterns of trusting behavior that evolved over many centuries. If newcomers do not accept the burdens entailed by the civic culture of the host society—most notably the need to forswear one’s pre-existing racial, ethnic and religious allegiances—they are bound to reduce the benefits of good citizenship for the host Anglo-Saxon nation. (Andrew Fraser, The WASP Question (Arktos, 2011), 57, 64)

All evidence indicates that these groups will not forswear such allegiances, any more than Jews have forsworn their ethnic and religious allegiances despite centuries of living among Europeans.

Berserkers and Shape-Shifting

Two characteristics of I-E culture apparent in the film that always struck me are the berserkers and shape-shifting. Young boys “had to go out and become like a band of dogs or wolves—to raid their enemies.”[1] All young men went out on raids as part of their initiation into the group. Berserkers attacked their enemies in a trance-like frenzy that is apparent in several scenes. Emotional intensity at a fever pitch that was embedded in religion. Odin the god of the Männerbünde is also the “god of battle rage.”[5].

The concept is connected to a belief in shape-shifting wherein the soul is disengaged from the body and can roam as a wolf or a bear, at which time it can engage in superhuman heroic deeds. Snorri Sturluson, the medieval chronicler of the Norse sagas, writes: “Woden’s men went without hauberks [armor] and raged like dogs or wolves. They bit their shields and were strong like bears or bulls. They killed men but neither fire nor iron hurt them. This is called berserkgangr.”[6] Young men were initiated into the Männerbünde by mock hanging and were taught berserker techniques.[7]

Amleth as a Berserker

Amleth as a Shape-Shifting Berserker becomes a wolf.

Hypermasculinity of Norse Society

Indo-European culture was far from sexually egalitarian—what one might term “hyper-masculine.” Lotte Hedeager’s Iron Age Myth and Materiality: An Archaeology of Scandinavia, AD 400–1000 paints a picture of a completely militarized society in which male sexual penetration was a marker of power, while being penetrated was, for a male, the ultimate insult.[9] Accusing a man of having been sodomized was a grievous accusation, with the same penalty as for murder. Older males lacking the power or ability to penetrate took on the status of women and were even ridiculed by slaves. Women were seen as legitimate spoils of war and raiding, and such women were typically enslaved.

This is relevant to the plot of The Northman: Amleth’s mother, Queen Gudrún, was originally captured by Amleth’s father, Aurvandill, whom Gudrún describes as a rapist whom she passionately hated. When Aurvandill is killed by his brother Fjölnir, she becomes Fjölnir’s wife and bears him a son. She has much more positive feelings toward Fjölnir than for Aurvandill. Women as spoils of war.

The following passage from Hedeager gets at this hyper-masculine, completely militarized culture that appears to have been characteristic of I-E culture in northwestern Europe at least from 2500 bc until the Middle Ages:

In the extremely competitive and aggressive Scandinavian society in which blood feuds were taking place everywhere, often lasting for many years and several generations …, the concept of honour evolved around reputation, respect and prestige [i.e., not one’s place in a kinship group. as was typically the case in non-individualist cultures]. Social life and reputation were hierarchically organised and arranged according to dominance and submission, powerful and powerless. At the bottom of the social scale, female thralls [slaves] were routinely subjected to rape and traded as sexual subjects. In the account of a Viking market at Volga in 922, the Arab diplomat Ibn Fadlan describes how the Vikings (the Scandinavian Rus) regularly had sex with their slaves, often in public, and in groups of both sexes. This activity took place both in front of potential buyers and their own formal partners, whether wives or girlfriends, who seemed unaffected … . Rape of a free woman, however, was a serious matter … .

Within this social hierarchy, power was explicitly connected with metaphors for penetration—by the sword, penis, or tongue. Those who penetrated—with words, with weapons, or with the phallus—were the powerful (“males”); those who became penetrated were the powerless (“females”). In a social setting, sexuality provided a symbolic code for dominance and submission, throwing light on power and thus status differences … . The most severe accusations in the Old Norse society evolved around “effeminacy” and penetration, implying that sexuality and hostility were two sides of the same coin.[10]

I was surprised by the scene toward the end when Amleth reveals himself to Gudrún as her son. I expected Gudrún to be overjoyed at seeing her long-lost son, but instead she lashed out at him and admitted that she had asked Fjölnir to kill Aurvandill and Amleth, and that she prefers Fjölnir and their new son Gunnar. Amleth kills her after she attacks him, and he accidentally kills Gunnar. Assuming this could actually happen, it would indicate that despite the relatively low position of women, they could seek power by influencing men. The evolutionary psychology of her choice is a bit muddled; both Amleth and Gunnar are her sons and if anything, she should choose to favor the older (because he is already of reproductive age), but I suppose the hatred engendered by Aurvandill raping her overshadowed everything else—an example where a proximal mechanism (hatred of being raped, attraction to another’s relative kindness) trumps ultimate evolutionary logic. She was a prize in the fratricidal war between Fjölnir and Aurvandill, but apparently Fjölnir was relatively kind to her. Nevertheless, within the context of the story, the audience had been led to see Amleth’s quest as noble, to hope for his success, and to see Fjölnir as evil. The sudden reversal toward the end is jarring.

I-E Social Mobility

Another point of intersection with traditional I-E culture is that social mobility was possible. Men who had talent as warriors could move up in the culture—essentially it was a free market culture based on military talent, either organizational or fighting ability. Here Amleth is chosen as a slave by Fjölnir because of his physique and presumed fighting ability, and later, Amleth is on the side of Fjölnir and Thorir in an extremely violent game (Icelandic: knattleikr) where players club their opponents to gain an advantage, quite possibly with lethal consequences. Amleth excels at the game and comes to the rescue of the young Gunnar who is about to be murderously clubbed by an opponent. As a reward, Thorir lightens Amleth’s work load, and he allows him to supervise others and to be married to the beautiful Olga with whom he had already developed a bond. But he tells Amleth that he will always be a slave.

This reminds us that I-E culture had a strong role for reciprocity rather than total despotism. At the heart of I-E culture was the practice of gift-giving as a reward for military accomplishment. Successful leaders were expected to reward their followers handsomely.[11] Oath-bound contracts of reciprocal relationships were characteristic of I-Es and this practice continued with the various I-E groups that invaded Europe. These contracts formed the basis of patron-client relationships based on reputation—leaders could expect loyal service from their followers, and followers could expect equitable rewards for their service to the leader. This is critical because these relationships are based on talent and accomplishment, not ethnicity (i.e., rewarding people on the basis of kinship distance) or despotic subservience (where followers are essentially unfree). But progress from slave to completely free was slow, and, according to some scholars, could take several generations. Amleth will always be a slave in Fjölnir’s eyes.

Another thing that surprised and frankly horrified me was the aftermath of a successful raid on a Rus fortified village when many of the villagers were herded into a thatch-roofed building and then burned alive. The raiders made off with booty and some slaves (presumably the able-bodied men and desirable [fertile]  females) but seem to have murdered the rest—men, women, and children. Such behavior was not typical of many of the I-E groups that invaded Europe. Instead of simply raiding, conquering I-E groups typically developed settled among the people they conquered and developed relationships of domination and subordination between the new military elites and the conquered peoples, providing protection in return for service. This is a prescription for feudal-type societies dominated by military elites with mutual obligations to the people they dominate, but in which kinship ties between elites and the people they dominate are relatively unimportant and ultimately permeable. But the raid on the Rus village is not intended as a permanent settlement, with disastrous consequences for the villagers

*   *   *

The Northman depicts a society that is quite foreign to contemporary sensibilities. It’s unlikely many of us would want to live in it—unless one was able to be a male in a successful Männerbund. But, as it is said, uneasy lies the head that wears the crown—a lesson that could hardly have been lost on Fjölnir. In any case, there’s no denying that the society selected for strong men—something we definitely need now.

The deep question is how such a violent, hierarchical culture developed eventually into the highly egalitarian Scandinavian cultures we see today. My short answer is that the I-E’s dominated a far more egalitarian hunter-gatherer majority and that the latter eventually came to dominate the area—a theory spelled out in Individualism and the Western Liberal Tradition. 

[1] Ibid., 239; emphasis in text.

[2] Ibid., 364.

[3] Duchesne, The Uniqueness of Western Civilization, 398.aa

[4] Ibid.

[5] Hans-Peter Hasenfratz, Barbarian Rites, trans. Michael Moynihan (Rochester, VT: Inner Traditions, 2011; original German edition, Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany: Verlag Herder, 1992), 49.

[6] Michael Speidel, “‘Berserks’: A History of Indo-European ‘Mad Warriors,’” Journal of World History 13, no. 2 (1992): 253–90, 253–54.

[7] Hasenfratz, Barbarian Rites, 64–65.

[8] Anthony, The Horse, the Wheel, and Language.

[9] Lotte Hedeager, Iron Age Myth and Materiality: An Archaeology of Scandinavia, AD 400–1000 (London: Routledge, 2011).

[10] Ibid., 115–18.

[11] Anthony, The Horse, the Wheel, and Language, 238.

[12] Ibid., 303

[13] Ibid., 343.

[14] Ibid.

[15] Duchesne, The Uniqueness of Western Civilization, 438.

[16] Ibid., 379.

[17] Interestingly, Duchesne describes Stalin as a classic despot. Stalin, from Georgia, is said to have had a despotic Oriental personality, surrounding himself with “slavish characters” and continuing to need “choruses of public approval to reinforce his ego.” Duchesne, The Uniqueness of Western Civilization, 424.

[18] Herodotus, Histories 7, 136.

[19] Haak, et al., “Massive Migration from the Steppe Was a Source for Indo-European Languages in Europe.”

[20] Kristian Kristiansen, et al. (“Re-Theorising Mobility and the Formation of Culture and Language among the Corded Ware Culture in Europe, Antiquity 9, no. 356 (2017): 334–347.

[21] Haak et al., “Ancient DNA, Strontium isotopes, and osteological analyses shed light on social and kinship organization of the Later Stone Age, Proceedings of the national Academy of Science 105, no. 47 (November 25, 2008): 18226–18231

[22] Ibid., 343.

[23] Anthony, The Horse, the Wheel, and Language, 343.


25 replies
  1. Robert Henderson
    Robert Henderson says:

    The vestiges of the Nordic invasion of the UK can still be seen vividly if ones drives up the East coast of England where the fair haired are still very generously represented.

  2. Nice Guy Eddie
    Nice Guy Eddie says:

    If you enjoy non-PC movie-making I can recommend ‘Old Henry’, a gritty, realist cowboy film (2021) with an all-White, all-male cast … no ethnic heroines or sodomite gunfighters in sight, and all the better for it.

    • Tim Folke
      Tim Folke says:

      Agreed! A great movie, and possibly true historically. Neither Garrett nor his accomplices knew exactly what the Kid looked like, and the Kid’s death inquest and burial was comprised 100% of Mexicans who were friendly to the Kid.
      The Kid was fluent in Spanish. Maybe Garrett got him, maybe the Kid just went to Mexico, or maybe it is just like the movie said it was.

  3. Bobby
    Bobby says:

    Thanks for the fine and also, scholarly review Kevin.
    Because of all the political correctness, I haven’t been to, nor have watched a movie in years. But I’ll make the effort to try and see this one in a theater.

    • Jediee
      Jediee says:

      I loved Northman. I was expecting the usual “inclusion” of some studly black warrior to please the media cultural poliburo but was delighted to see some near truth in the film , no blacks in nortwestern Europe in the 900 A.D. period. What a breath of fresh air.

  4. Joe
    Joe says:

    “The deep question is how such a violent, hierarchical culture developed eventually into the highly egalitarian Scandinavian cultures we see today.”

    Kevin… it’s more like:

    “The deep question is how such a violent, hierarchical culture devolved eventually into the obsequious effeminate Scandinavian cultures we see today.”

    The contrast between the two societies couldn’t be more striking.

  5. Howard J. Blair
    Howard J. Blair says:

    Well the thing about males penetrating other males seen as masculine is absed on what, yes I did see the reference [9].

    But there were very little written testimonies from this time and age.

    If we llok at the wiking age litterature as in the Edda or Snorre’s King Tales, there are no accounts whatsoever of being a male homosexual penetrator being seen as positive.

    But certainly being homoisexual could be seen as negative given that I think Loke who was considered mixed between humans and giants shapeshifted to a horse ad was sodomized or similar and this was then used against him, he was ridiculed for it.

    Also about different tribes as such constantly raiding each other.

    In Snorre’s Tales it is more about different kingdoms, for example 3 kingdoms in Norway and one king defeating the others to make it one kingdom but the reason: he wanted to impress a woman he wanted for a wife, which he then forgot about and then remembered or something.

    So the constant rading I have not read about earlier.

    Also in the wiking age there were woman wiking queens and woman warriors, who had power. And partnership was depicted as a process of courtship and marriage in general between free men & women. Based on free will.

    But I guess going into detain about the archeological and written proofs of these theories may be beyond the work done for an article like this, but would certainly have made for a more interesting and deep analysis. But I assume I could read some of the referenced litterature.

    Among men in gnereal that are heterosexual in the Northern European region all homosexaulity is seen as total “faggot shit” so to speak i.e. no difference between the penetrator and the “b*tch ass” so to speak.

    And I doubt this would have changed at large over time but certainly it is changing to a degree due to the homosexuals pushing this together with racially mixed jews with an anti white agenda.

  6. Ovidiu
    Ovidiu says:

    Amazing movie, I’ve just finished watching it. I could not wait after reading Kevin’s “review” and went directly to see it.

    However, thinking about the “individualist” paradigm. The theme is revenge, blood-feud, and honour, and the main characters (save Olga) are blood relatives. It suggests a clan/kinship based society as we see in the Middle East (me against my brother, my brother and I against the stranger)…Yes there is that element of social mobility (but moderated by ‘always a slave’) and the oath (however one about revenging a relative). I don’t see in it much of the egalitarian warrior-band structure (of which Duchense speculatively wrote), it is looks hierarchical all the way; or about the non-kinship/clan/ based loyalty….but it is a movie after all so this not much an argument.

    • Kevin MacDonald
      Kevin MacDonald says:

      Kinship is definitely important, but within the circle of close relatives–common enough throughout European history. I don’t see any clan-type warfare in the movie; no indication, e.g., that the uncle’s men are relatives. I noted in the article that social mobility based on talent, not kinship, was very slow, but did happen.

  7. James Bowery
    James Bowery says:

    Something of a coincidence is my choice of the volcanic Sutsey Island for “Etik the Younger — Background For a Screenplay“.

    An excerpt:

    Erik: Since you will not unhand these girls and leave Iceland, I hope you are enough of a man of honor to meet me 3 days from now, on the Sutsey Island, each of us equipped with blade not to exceed 25cm and 15m of strong cordage — you entering from the Syrtlingur side of the island and I from the Jolnir side of the island. One of us, at most, will leave. My friends will assure that both of us are equally equipped, and will transport us to our respective sides of the island. No observers — no “seconds” as in code duello — no one but you and I and the Goðs. The survivor, if one there be, will also be equipped with rescue flare to call to be returned to the mainland. If either of us does not show for departure to Sutsey at the appointed time and place, he will be declared a Nīþ. Anyone may kill a Nīþ in any manner at any time without incurring dishonor. If one of us calls to be rescued but the other is still alive, that coward will be declared a Nīþ.

  8. Deb
    Deb says:

    Saw the movie this afternoon and not only was I completely enthralled, I was amazed that 2 1/2 hours had flown by so quickly. I was the only one in the theatre so it was like my own private screening.
    Mr. MacDonald’s statement, ‘It is difficult for us to imagine the importance and seriousness of swearing a public oath in a religious ceremony in traditional Indo-European (I-E) culture’ struck a chord with me. Over many decades, and perhaps centuries, elected officials and military leaders who have sworn an oath of office have demonstrated those oaths to be mere lip service which suggests we have not evolved as much as we believe.

  9. Sanjay
    Sanjay says:

    “it provides a positive portrayal of what would be seen as extreme “toxic” masculinity among White men”

    But does not the movie portray genetic degeneracy with respect to showing European family disunity by creating a story line where a king is killed by his own brother who then takes his wife as his own? The whole plot is about intra-family disunity, as if the Ashkenazim are trying to portray this as a normal and healthy aspect of European society. On the other hand, perhaps this does indeed represent reality among the Europeans during the Middle Ages, since this was a time when Europeans were transitioning from being K-Selected to R-Selected. Your description of the movie seems to me to be indicative of an R-Selected state, such as enslaving each other, killing each other for power, raping your own females, treating your own elderly and less physically abled members with very low altruism, placing very high value on promiscuity, etc. Personally, these R-Selected historical periods are not the times I value among the Europeans; I see ethno-nationalism as mimicking more K-Selected periods, such as the Mycenaean times, early Roman culture before the empire was formed, and the English period from 1600 to right before the degenerate Enlightenment was created.

    “It is difficult for us to imagine the importance and seriousness of swearing a public oath in a religious ceremony in traditional Indo-European (I-E) culture.”

    Yes, my understanding is that religion is very useful for the survival of a race. Perhaps religion at this time was more in the form of an Individually Selected type, as opposed to a form which bonds the whole race as one? I don’t know the history here; I’m just trying my best to make Woodley of Menie’s model congruent with Professor MacDonald’s one. Anyway, this was something I wrote on European religion:

    Why China Can’t Invent Anything, Rendering Them an Easy Conquest for the Ashkenazim

    I used to have an unwarranted belief that China would be the salvation for Hominid kind, carrying on the process of “upwards” evolution after the rest of the Hominids continue to de-evolve and possibly go extinct. But, I now understand that just like how the universally constant laws of physics would similarly affect evolution of life on any planet in the known universe, the constant laws of evolution on earth – in this case, dysgenics and mutational load – would similarly affect all races on our planet. Thus, China would face the same processes of dysgenics and mutational load that is responsible for destroying all the other races. In fact, China was already genetically behind the Europeans and Ashkenazim; for a race to be creative/innovative, they must possess certain traits. For one, the General Intelligence distribution must have a wider standard deviation, that is, instead of most of the population being concentrated along the median score, there must be a high percent of them in the extremely high Intelligence range – specifically IQs that are 140 and higher. Europeans have a much higher standard deviation than the Chinese, so they have more than adequate absolute quantities of people in the very high IQ range. So even though the median IQ of the Chinese is higher than Europeans, they have much less individuals in the very high IQ range when compared to the Europeans.

    Next, to be creative and innovative, a race must have high Industriousness – the desire to be productive in all aspects of life. Both races in question have this trait in adequate amounts. Finally, a race must possess a high amount of a cluster of traits known as ‘Religiosity-Spirituality-Monumentalism-Open to Experience.’ While the Europeans are abundant in this trait, the Chinese are highly lacking. This cluster of traits predisposes a race for the tendency to seek out new experiences, try to understand the unknown and to experience the unknown, see the world, reality, and existence as having a spiritual/transcendental element which motivates them to seek out the most intangible experiences in the hopes to experience, understand, and benefit from it, see life as something that is not just about fulfilling basic necessitates and basic hedonistic desires, but about living to accomplish a bigger, greater, monumental goal – something that must be achieved by the collective effort and cooperation of their race – that will serve as an achievement that will bring meaning and purpose to the race and that will continue to exist and be improved upon by future generations, and finally, in many cases, outright believe in a God, the Eternal Soul, and an After-Life.

    Consequently, since China lacks both the sufficient amount of individuals in the very high IQ range and collectively a high amount of ‘Religiosity-Spirituality-Monumentalism-Open to Experience,’ they can’t produce any geniuses that are responsible for high value innovation/creativity. China’s strategy has thus been to copy other races’ innovations and discoveries and then progressively make minute improvements upon them by using large teams of mediocre Chinese intellects.

    Thus, the solution for the Ashkenazim to conquer China is clear: cut off all outside information to China by all means possible. China will intellectually starve to death and collapse.

    “I-E culture was fundamentally individualist”

    I have always been confused by the use of the term “individualist” to describe Europeans. When I hear the word “individualist” I think of the Individual Selection versus Group Selection model. Thus, by saying that Europeans are “individualists,” one is saying that they are Individually Selected genetic psychopaths who exist just to serve their individual needs, as opposed to existing to facilitate the well-being of their race as a whole. When Professor MacDonald uses the word “individualist,” does he really mean that Europeans are low on Ethnocentrism, relative to other races? If so, then would it be better to use the phrase “low ethnocentrism” instead of “individualism”? Thus, Europeans in past K-Selected periods where relatively high on Group Selectiveness, but a type that comprised relatively low Ethnocentrism. As such, the members worked for the well-being of their entire society, but members of the society were allowed to be less genetically related to each other, relative to more Ethnocentric groups.

  10. Sanjay
    Sanjay says:

    I forgot to mention one thought:

    Professor MacDonald has titled his book “Individualism And The Western Liberal Tradition.” What confuses me here is the use of the term “Liberal” to describe Europeans. Contemporary European Liberals are a highly genetically degenerated gene pool, even more so than contemporary European “Conservatives.” The current European Liberals exclusively comprises homosexuals, transsexuals, feminists, atheists/nihilists, and relatively high IQ genetic psychopaths who see being a Liberal as being a means by which they can acquire resources, especially by prostituting themselves to the Ashkenazim (many of the Liberals belong to more than one of these groups). Thus, the title of the book gives the impression that it makes the argument that Europeans have always been like contemporary European Liberals. Actually, my understanding is that Europeans have always cycled throughout history from being more traditional to approaching the state of current European Liberals, but never actually reached the low genetic levels of the current Liberal Europeans – they always in the past collapsed before reaching this low.

  11. Pierre de Craon
    Pierre de Craon says:

    The Northman depicts a society that is quite foreign to contemporary sensibilities.

    God willing, the deeply misguided enthusiasm expressed by many of the contributors to the present thread for making that foreignness a thing of the past will soon die on the vine.

    The wealthy and powerful Hollywood Jews who ALONE profit from this movie and whose support for its making constitutes the movie’s efficient cause obviously see what most here have shut their eyes to: that the movie portrays an assemblage of pagan white savages who use their strength and native intelligence to maximize their opportunities for rape and murder of other white people, at least some of them presumably Christians, to the greatest and cruelest extent possible. Why would the enemies of everything white undermine what is plainly the desired affective impact with the occasional black or Third World face? In this instance, anachronism would serve only to defeat their purpose.

    It is at least arguable that enthusiasm for this film effectively redefines the cause proclaimed on TOO’s masthead—”White identity, interests, and culture”—in terms that make this site’s harshest critics look like euphemists.

    • Guttersnipe
      Guttersnipe says:

      I have just returned from watching the first hour of this film. That was enough. The hero and his band of barbaric aryans were burning women and children alive in a barn within ten minutes of the opening.

      The movie is playing in every cinema in my town and as Pierre points out its primary message is not pro-white. Hyper-realistic portrayals of the quotidien savagery and cruelty of life in the 9th century AD in a dangerously all-white ( not even jews ) society may be of great interest to anthropologists and ethno-nationalists but to the average 21st century world citizen I fear it looks more like a two hour justification of the current white genocide policy which our rulers favour.

      With a strong stomach, even I had to walk out when we were subjected to the heroine displaying her nether parts, complete with blood-soaked rags, in order to fend off the villain’s amorous advances. What would Claude Raines have made of that?? The father ‘Mufasa’, to whom ‘Simba’ was so evidently devoted, turns out to have raped the ever-wickedly white Nicole Kidman, and she in turn has ‘Mufasa’ assassinated by ‘Scar’ and willingly shacks up with him. This renders our rape-spawn ( should have been aborted?) hero’s near insane pursuit of vengeance meaningless. What is the esoteric meaning of all of this? It’s certainly not going to get any white people off their anti-depressants.

      For a much more pro-white story with a proper hero’s journey watch the excellent ‘Vikings’ series from a few years back with Travis Fimmel as Ragnar Lothbrok. That was a truly epic saga, beautifully filmed, and totally free of anachronistic diversity or liberalism. Still plenty of strong women characters of course as we should expect from our people.

      Honour the gods.

  12. Cathleen McGuire
    Cathleen McGuire says:

    Thank you, Kevin MacDonald, for a truly edifying film review. I found the movie enthralling as well. Here are my random comments:

    • I, too, got the privilege to see the film in a virtually empty theater. While I appreciated the private screening as it were, I lament it’s not helping the film at the box office where it is not financially recouping well. They’re marketing it in Times Square as a big-budget action flick, but really it’s an art-house production so the masses are probably sensing there’s something unfamiliar and not quite right about it.

    • For all its period-piece perfection, The Northman contemporaneously telegraphs how much those of Northern European descent have done a 180 degree turn from whence we came: from “hyper-masculinity” and deep shamanism to testosterone-depleted males and a nihilistic faith in technocracy.

    • I agree with Kevin. The stirring depictions of long-lost Western shamanic traditions have no context for modern Northern European audiences (at least those not of the New Age-y variety). The scenes just come across for them as some sort of cinematic magical realism.

    • I had no idea there is an Old Norse word “berserker” for those who fought in a trance-like fury. It’s a great word that today seems more applicable to the Maori. Or even Antifa if you substitute “trance-like” for “mind-controlled.”

    • I loved the Old Norse rune-looking font the film used for its titles.

    • I appreciated the film had no gratuitous pornography. The sex was gratefully modest by contemporary standards. Even the violence was not all that offensively gory.

    • Another stunning film showcasing warriors and shamanic spirits is Atanarjuat The Fast Runner, about rivalry in an Inuit community.

    • I happened to read this article in Unz Review the day before seeing the film. It helped me better understand the historical context, especially the slave angle.

    Slavocaust, Past and Present, or the Aryan and Semitic War on Slavic Peoples and Cultures

    • I had never paid much attention to Viking culture, but a couple years ago I was in Ireland at the national museum and was amazed that there was a whole floor devoted to the Norse and how sophisticated they were. I was also amazed to learn what an extensive influence the Vikings had on early Ireland. I remembered then that my genealogy is not just Irish; I have a strand of Danish lineage in me as well. It was there in Ireland at the museum that I put two and two together for the first time and realized I am of Viking descent — I Am Viking!

  13. Sanjay
    Sanjay says:

    (mod. note: Sanjay, your note was sent directly, per your request, to Prof. MacDonald.)

  14. Cat
    Cat says:

    It’s very interesting that Arnon Milchan and even another Milchan were producers of the movie. I am wary of powerful Zionists being associated with a film that in this “white supremacy”-baiting climate could be used as Exhibit A for promoting yet another example in history of toxic white masculinity. Let’s not forget, Arnon Milchan produced JFK, a film that avoided even the slightest hint of the role Zionists played in the murder of John Kennedy.

    Kevin MacDonald, someone well-versed in Northern European history, wrote that it was not typical to burn alive conquered village folks. So why would the main collaborators of the film (director Robert Eggers and leading man Alexander Skarsgård) depict such an anomalous incident in a production that rigorously strives for historical authenticity? I can just see how a Daniel Goldhagen would cry murder that this village “holocaust” scene is tangential proof that in addition to Germans, all Northern European peoples are pathologically “willing executioners.”

    Maybe I’m overthinking it, but is anyone besides me concerned about the Milchan association with this film?

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