The lost Python classic: "Erik the Viking" (1989)

Tuesday, August 8, 2006

Every now and again a film comes along that is dismissed by critics, goes widely unseen by the general public, and yet is still considered a great film by those who have seen it.†

I am here to tell you about a movie that falls within this wasteland of great, but underrated films. I speak, of course, of the classic film "Erik The Viking."†

"Erik The Viking" was written and directed by Terry Jones of Monty Python fame, and was set to be Monty Python's next big film, until the death of Graham Chapman caused the breakup of the comedy group. Terry Jones decided to forge ahead, and the final result was an incredibly funny movie that makes homage to Monty Python humor.†

"Erik The Viking" tells the story of a kind-hearted Viking Named Erik (played by Tim Robbins Ö yes, that Tim Robbins) who must lead a small band of Vikings on a quest to Valhalla to wake the gods and end the age of Ragnorok.

Sound serious?

Don't worry, it's not. "Erik The Viking" leads a stellar cast though one laugh after another, including Mickey Rooney, Terry Jones, Eartha Kitt and John Cleese. Heck, this movie has everything; adventure, humor, heart and Tsutomu Sekine (who?) as an Oriental slave master who curses like a sailor in a language that no one understands.†

The only negative thing that can be said about this film is that the effects are a bit cheesy. If you ask me, that is what gives the film its charm; after all, if you look at "Monty Python's and the Holy Grail", its charm also comes from cheesy effects.†

This movie is hands down a classic, and anyone that might tell you differently is probably not a fan of Monty Python-style humor. So, if you are a lucky enough to be able to get your hands on a copy of "Erik The Viking" (it is very hard to find), revel in the brilliance of it, and if you are not so lucky, get on the Internet and sign a petition to get it put onto DVD so everyone can enjoy this incredibly funny, classic film.

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