Introducing: The Norseman (1978)

the norseman 001This past week, I’ve been seeing different previews and advertisements online for a new upcoming series on The History Channel simply called Vikings. While it looks to me like their attempt to capitalize on the Game of Thrones fame, I looks intriguing to me. Since I don’t have cable, I’ll have to get a feel for Vikings by looking through my streaming resources. Low and behold, as if it were a sign from the movie gods, when I loaded up Netflix, nestled in the Just Added section was a movie called The Norseman. And when I saw that it starred Lee Majors, I knew I was on to something truly cheese-tastic.

Streaming on: Netflix

Directed by: Charles B. Pierce

Starring: Lee Majors, Cornel Wilde, Mel Ferrer, Susie Coelho

Rated: PG

Tagline: None

In 1006, a Viking prince sails to America to rescue his father who is being held captive by some vicious native Americans. At the turn of the 11th Century, Lee Majors is  Thorvald, a Viking from the land of the Norse, accompanied by his younger brother, a hunchbacked wizard, and a peanut gallery full of horn-helmeted vikings. Upon reaching the main land the group is attacked by Indians and their troubles begin. A young Indian girl befriends Thorvald and leads them to the location of their lost Viking family members who are suffering from bouts of torture and abuse at the hands of the Indians. This ignites yet another and final Viking vs Indian fight scene.

Notices and Wonders:

  • Summary of scrolling text at the beginning, the Vikings are coming to the Americas.
  • Row! Row! Row!
  • Hey, could somebody please turn down the orchestra? We can’t hear the narration.
  • Not very often the narrator gets created in a film.
  • One little, two little, three little indians. Their arrows strike hard and true, but they apparently aim for the ass.
  • Thorvald (Lee Majors) must look the farthest thing from a Viking, what with his Kentucky accent, porno stache, Zorro mask, and Roman Gladiator armor.
  • Bad wigs all around for the blind guys.
  • Big round pillows are awfully hard to grind corn with.
  • In between Gandalf and Dumbledore, there was King Eurich.
  • Indian and Viking love triangles never end well.
  • Slow motion fighting isn’t good with cheaply made props. Shields shouldn’t bend like cardboard. And that is some bright red paint at the end of those swords.
  • Hey buddy, if you’re going to throw your axe, don’t come up short.
  • The inside of that boat seems to be at least double the size of the outside.
  • The old Indian woman bears a striking resemblance to Mama Fratelli from Goonies.
  • Be careful with that hot poker, you might actually burn someone. Especially if you actually touched them with it.
  • Blind Vikings walk like zombies and are strong enough to kill two fat Indians.
  • Viking armor must be made of aluminum cans if a single arrow can penetrate it.
  • Two more fat Indians down. What had these guys been eating? They’ve got Viking grog bellies.
  • Can you spot the hairy chested Indians?
  • Dragging blind men along on a pike shouldn’t slow you down, their asses need to keep up.
  • Epic Thorvald the Viking Baywatch moment!!
  • More slo-mo indian killing.
  • Wizards’s falcon for the win
  • Thanks city of Newburn, North Carolina for furnishing the Viking boat. Funny.

Quotable Quotes:

“Spin your spell wizard.”

“It written that this new land, will be called Vineland.”

“As Odin has been my strength, you will be my eyes.”

“Let it be written that the name Olaf shall live on in the land of the Norse.”

The Final Word:

Let it be written that the movie, The Norseman, is…cheesy. The film classified as an action/adventure flick, but even that would be a stretch. The fight scenes themselves were quite humorous and looked like a fight that one would see during a play being performed at any local high school. Every punch, kick, stabbing, clubbing, and knife swing, noticeably missed their mark and this was highlighted by the slow-motion battle scenes. The characters fall victims to unfortunate stereotypes; the Vikings were stupid and looked as much with their horned helmets and silly six pack formed armor; the Indians with their brightly colored face paint and the constant whooping and hollering all through out their attacks. Stereotypes aside, the dialogue spoken by anyone was more barbaric than the Vikings themselves. I was humored by the appearance of football star Deacon Jones as the only black Viking – was there even such a thing in history? Probably the worst of all the acting came from the star itself, Lee Majors. He seemed as though he was half asleep and bored throughout the whole film. I’m guessing that many people may actually like this flick and I am sounding a little harsher than I should be because as bad as it seemed, the film was slightly entertaining. I give this movie 3 turds out of 5. While it was somewhat enjoyable, The Norseman would have been more fun to watch with a larger group of people.

norseman 002

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2 thoughts on “Introducing: The Norseman (1978)

  1. mistylayne says:

    Haha, sounds hilarious! 😉

  2. James says:

    Totally getting this for my next Historically Inaccurate movie night…

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