The 13th Warrior2 min readReading Time: 2 minutes
When the credits rolled on The 13th Warrior, my friend Robert looked at me perplexed and said, “I have no idea what we just saw.“
Indeed, The 13th Warrior is the strangest movie I’ve seen in months. And that’s what the movie was about, I suppose: Antonio Banderas plays Ahmed, an Arab with a distinct Spanish accent and lots of eyeliner and bronzer, who reluctantly joins a group of Norsemen after being exiled from Baghdad. These Norse Vikings are on a mission to protect a northern village from an evil force – called Wendol – that attacks on foggy nights.
The 13th Warrior, set in 922 AD, is based on the book Eaters of the Dead by Michael Crichton, which was based on Beowulf. According to the script, the Wendol are cannibals, and although no carnivorous scenes are shown, we see the tribe riding around on horses dressed in bearskins and beheading a number of victims.
The Vikings are equally barbaric, but for different reasons. They use boiled cow urine as first aid ointment and have atrocious table manners – and even worse personal hygiene. They wear ratty clothes, have mangy hair with split ends, and look so filthy that the smell of their feces wafts off the screen almost nauseatingly.
Ahmed, on the other hand, is civilized and has a well-cut hairstyle that is a flattering variation on the Caesar cut. By listening to and watching the Vikings, Ahmed has learned their Norse language and knows how to defend himself in battle, so I thought it only fair that he give the Vikings some hair care tips in return. After a particularly tiring day on the battlefields, all the Vikings were able to relax with the full salon treatment: hot oil, rinse, the works! If anyone could benefit from Clairol Daily Defense Fortifying Leave-In Conditioning Spray, it would be these guys.
In addition to this ambush, there are numerous bloody fight sequences, a jagged-tooth prophet, various mystical allusions and a queen named Weilew (played by Diane Venora) in this strange melange of an action film. Actually, “The 13th Warrior” is exactly as Robert commented, “It’s like Braveheart meets Clan of the Cave Bear, only without the plot.”
This is how you watch The 13th Warrior (1999) on Netflix USA!
The 13th Warrior is unfortunately not available on American Netflix.