Only weeks from its highly anticipated release in U.S. theaters, we have a final, bloody trailer for Robert Eggers’ The Northman to share, featuring quite a bit of new footage of the sprawling Viking revenge epic. Directed by Eggers, who brought us psychological horror masterpieces The Witch and The Lighthouse, and co-written by Eggers and Icelandic poet/novelist Sjón, the film stars an incredibly jacked-looking Alexander Skarsgård as Amleth, the warrior prince seeking vengeance who was a direct inspiration for the story of William Shakespeare’s classic Hamlet. Anyone with a passing literary familiarity is likely to see the similarities of structure here, given that the story is about a young man returning to avenge the death of his father after his scheming uncle steals the throne. Only this time, there’s a lot more Björk and shamanism to go around, and that looks to be a very good thing.
The Northman had its world premiere in Stockholm in late March, and has debuted to critical acclaim, with viewers praising its art direction, production values and intensity—all typical facets of Eggers’ directorial style, and elements that were also praised in films such as The Lighthouse. Where the latter was quite opaque and metaphysical, however, The Northman looks like a more grounded narrative than Eggers has ever taken on in the past, a more easily grasped and elemental story of revenge that may well earn the film a bigger viewership than any of his past films. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Eggers’ stock rise significantly in Hollywood, after this release, given the amount of attention that The Northman seems to be receiving.
The film certainly can boast an impressive cast, with Skarsgård followed by Ethan Hawke, Nicole Kidman, Claes Bang, Anya Taylor-Joy, Willem Dafoe and the aforementioned polymath of a talent that is Björk, playing a witch/prophet known only as “The Seeress.” The entire setting seems positively infused with a dreadful and horrifying sense of mysticism and the macabre, which, once again, is totally fitting given what Eggers has already given us in The Witch and The Lighthouse. Adding the prospect of Viking decapitations on top of all that sounds like a genre geek’s fantasy come true.
Check out the full trailer below. The Northman arrives soon in the U.S., on April 22, 2022.