Nicolas Winding Refn is, probably, one of the most interesting directors we have right now. He is one of those rare individuals who has managed to stick with making the films that HE wants to make, seemingly without regard as to whether or not they will be "blockbusters". His latest film, Drive, was a huge success, considering its small budget, and was one of my favorite films of last year. I decided to try and watch some of his older films, and, having already seen Bronson, I went next to his middle ages epic Valhalla Rising, the story of an epicly badass warrior, nicknamed "One Eye", who travels to a "New World" with a tribe of Vikings.
This film is absolutely gorgeous. It's cinematography is top notch. However, it is incredibly silent. In fact, "One Eye" is a mute, so the hero of the story never even talks. The story is, unfortunately, very slow, which makes it difficult, at times, to really keep up with it. It was just too easy to get distracted. It is a journey film that relies a little too much, in my opinion, on beauty shots and not enough on giving the audience something to pay attention too.
If you're a fan of slow, meandering cinema, very much along the lines of Aguirre, Wrath Of God, you will love this film. If not, I'm not sure the beautiful cinematography will save it for you.