What to See: 5 Big and Quirky Influences on ‘The Northman’ and Other Robert Eggers Movies

The author of the Viking movie of the moment has taken inspiration from classic folklore and other unconventional elements. He has also drunk on singular films, which you can also enjoy in streaming.

With El hombre del norte we are having the name of Robert Eggers more present than ever. He has only made three films to date, including this monumental Viking piece, but he has made him one of the directors of the moment and one whose personal stamp is evident in every scene we see on screen.

But everyone has their influences, including those who have a lot of personality of their own. In addition to classic folklore and other historical references, Eggers has spoken of the influence of movies like these 5 proposals that we can find on streaming platforms. They are very peculiar, like the cinema of the young director, but they are great works that are worth exploring if you like his style.

Our review of The Northman, a story of revenge with a clean sword by Robert Eggers

‘The spring of the maiden’ (1960)

For Eggers there are few filmmakers as important as Ingmar Bergman, whom he recognizes would like to have a similar career. In every movie he’s done he’s quoted it, and The Northman is no exception. Due to its exploration of the savage medieval civilization of Scandinavia and its story of revenge, The Maiden’s Spring is the film that bears the greatest resemblance to its latest release.

For the story they were inspired by a Swedish ballad from the 13th century, which tells how a young woman goes to make an offering with candles to the village church, accompanied by her resentful pregnant servant. Along the way, she is abandoned by said servant, and in her progress she meets three apparently friendly shepherds, but who hide something more terrifying than she could imagine.

You can see it on Filmin.

‘The Servant’ (1963)

One of the fundamental elements in the marked tension of The Lighthouse is the complex relationship of domination between the characters of Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson. To shape it, the director took inspiration from Joseph Losey’s film The Servant, an intriguing 1963 British psychological drama.

In this film we see a scheming and manipulative butler who gradually manages to dominate the life of the man he serves, taking advantage of his sexual weaknesses. This exploitation, carried out to become the new lord of the house, marks a complex and perverse relationship very similar to the two lighthouse keepers in Eggers’ film.

You can see it on Filmin.

Ran (1985)

The Viking tale led by Alexander Skarsgård in a classic story from Scandinavian folklore, which was the basis on which William Shakespeare wrote his memorable play Hamlet. That’s why there have been Shakespearean comparisons when talking about the Viking film, and why it’s not surprising that Eggers has taken notes from other unconventional adaptations of the Briton’s work, such as Akira Kurosawa’s Ran.

In this case, the Japanese director takes the story of King Lear as the basis for making an epic action and drama film, as unique as the Viking film. In medieval Japan, a powerful man who decides to leave power and abdicate in his three sons, who will share the heritage. Something that the youngest son sees as a source of problems, causing the fury of his father who decides to disinherit him. Unwittingly, he ends up giving rise to the enormous war conflict that his other two sons will lead to remain exclusively in power.

You can see it on Filmin.

‘The Shining’ (1980)

The oppressive and unsettling atmospheres of The Shining, as well as the incredible visual precision of Stanley Kubrick, have been important to Eggers in both making The Lighthouse and The Witch, his first film. Even being the most «conventional» film on this list, this adaptation of Stephen King is essential for any approach to psychological terror and certain ambitions.

Despite the fact that King himself showed his disapproval with Kubrick’s interpretation of his work, there is no doubt that it has transcended as one of the best works of horror cinema. The writer’s obsession and paranoia dominate in this thriller with supernatural elements, where a novelist (Jack Nicholson) takes his wife and his son to a hotel far from the rest of the world. Little by little, his mind will begin to lose all connection with reality and sanity, escalating a tension that will be completely unleashed in one of the most shocking endings ever seen.

You can see it on HBO Max.

‘The Crucible’ (1996)

The story of The Witch follows a Christian settler family who has been excommunicated by their community over a religious dispute, leading Anya Taylor-Joy and company to a forest cut off from the world. This conflict derived from the extremism of Puritan Christianity and political factions is also important in one of the pinnacles of American fiction, the play The Crucible, made into a film starring Daniel Day-Lewis and Winona Ryder and Nicholas Hytner. director.

The Crucible puts us in the midst of a witch hunt in the Salem region of Massachusetts in the year 1692. There, a group of young women, including Abigail Williams, are accused of practicing magic to sexually pervert the men of the community. . Arthur Miller writes the script for a remarkable movie, powerful and also very 90s when it comes to presenting his morality.

You can see it on Disney+.

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