Viking Wolf (2022) Netflix Review: Unsatisfying creature horror draws a blank

Viking Wolf (2022) Netflix Review

Viking Wolf (2022) Netflix Review: In Netflix’s newest Norwegian creature horror, Viking Wolf, a town is terrorized after an ancient werewolf is discovered in the forests of Nybu. The film’s creature is not too different looking than an ordinary wolf but with the added ferociousness and thirst for human blood.

Even without that differentiating factor, Viking Wolf feels like an empty and derivative recreation of genre mechanics that have taken years to mature. In addition, almost every move it makes is predictable and manages to create a barely serviceable experience, which is disappointing given the wealth of Norway’s cultural legends.

Thale (Elli Rhiannon) has recently moved to Nybu from Oslo with her family. Her mother, Liv Berg (Liv Mjones), is a deputy in the police and has recently married Arthur (Vidar Magnussen). Thale is close with her younger sister, Jenny. But she has difficulty settling in with the local kids. Subsequently, She is invited to a late-night party by Jonas (Sjur Brean).

The night turns into a nightmare when an alleged wolf attacks Elin, Jonas’ girlfriend, and takes her into the forest. The coroner cannot link the bite marks to a wolf when her body is discovered.

William from the Norway Veterinary Research Centre assists on the case and believes the creature to be a werewolf. Lars Brodin, an amputee hunter, comes into town and says the same things. Moreover, he warns Liv that she must ensure the “poison” of the creature does not spread. When the film’s opening credits started rolling, our expectations were heightened seeing the small montage. It turns out that the montage’s true horrors are never truly realized in the storytelling.

It’s one of Viking Wolf’s biggest problems. Its defining selling point is the creature itself, and we hardly delve deeper than the surface supposition of it being a werewolf to arouse any intrigue. Understanding how it works, what could kill it, and what impact it has on those it bites is never clearly explained to the viewer.

Viking Wolf (2022) Netflix Review

The narrative is completely directionless and does not seem to have a purpose. The arrangement of the three-act structure is very poor. It does not showcase any causal linkage between the setup and the climax either.

Everything that happens in Viking Wolf seems random. Lars Brodin is introduced out of nowhere and plays a drastically limited role in the eventual hunt of the werewolf as opposed to the expectation that was raised in the first instance. This lack of continuity severely hurts our ability to connect with the characters or become vested in the central mother-daughter showdown that was neglected and never materializes.

In fact, we do not see any communication between them or among the other family members at all during the film. How can we draw any tension or conclusions if we can’t see anything on the screen? Leaving the viewer to his own imagination in trying to flesh out such important details is self-destructive.

Director Stig Svendsen has made a tardy effort to improve the watchability of the material, which is uninspiring to begin with. The dialogues lack conviction, and the characters are shabbily sketched. Eventually, the narrative never breaks its strides while lazily moving to its conclusion. Viking Wolf contains all the genre tropes that have become prevalent as the list of its peers has grown. Svendsen seems to have incorporated all of them without taking a step back and seeing if they make sense collectively.

Viking Wolf is dimly lit and shot to make the visuals interesting. The location’s gorgeous shots of the natural terrain are worth every second. But the scenes themselves lack any personality to be interesting. Understandably, the central conceit needs the dark to manifest. However, even with that knowledge, the technical efforts to make the project more presentable are lacking. Acting seems to have too little space in the storytelling. At the same time, the cast cannot be called out for their half-hearted efforts. The problem is that they get no tangible support from the script.

If Viking Wolf were represented on a graph, it would be a complete standstill, flat line. In fact, world-building, character introductions, and significant narrative events have no ups and downs. Overall, the film proves to be a dud and utterly uninspired, especially at a time when the creature horror sub-genre has seen such immensely intriguing entries like Prey, Pinhead, and Men.

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Watch Viking Wolf (2022) Trailer

Viking Wolf (2022) Links: IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes
Viking Wolf (2022) Cast: Liv Mjönes, Elli Rhiannon Müller Osborne, Arthur Hakalahti
Where to watch Viking Wolf
Arnav Srivastav

Self-effacing and self-absorbed. College at RGNUL. A Cùle forever. Driven, ambitious, and "I hate most people". Oh, and I love movies if that wasn't obvious.