After the apparent death of her husband King Arald, a viking peasant woman, named Karin, takes her son Moki into hiding from Aghen, King Arald's enemy. But a mysterous stranger, named Rurik, begins acting as Karin's guardian, which evetually leads to a brutal showdown between Rurik and Aghen. Written by
Director Mario Bava was brought in to salvage the troubled production after the original director was fired. Bava wound up scrapping most of the footage that had already been shot, threw out the old script, and rewrote and reshot virtually the entire film in six days. See more »
In the ancient times, the savage and cruel warrior Hagen (Frank Ross) is chasing Queen Karin (Lisa Wagner) and her son Moki (Louis Polletin) to marry her and usurp the kingdom of her husband, King Arald (Jack Stuart). Karin and Moki are hid in a cottage in the woods living like peasants and they are protected by a stranger, the warrior Helmut (Cameron Mitchell), who is an expert in knives. Moki gets close to Helmut that teaches him how to hunt and fight and later Karin discloses to him that three years ago, her husband traveled in a ship to overseas to seek grains to his starving people. The vessel wrecked in the coast of Britain and since then they have had no news about Arald. Further she tells that Hagen was the responsible for the starvation since he had broken the truce between the kingdoms of Arald and King Rurik and killed his wife and son. Thirsty for revenge, King Rurik had invaded her kingdom with his warriors and killed the people and raped the women including her in her honeymoon, but spared the life of Arald. Helmut, who is actually King Rurik, falls in love for Karin and questions whether Moki is his son.
This is the first action movie of Mario Bava that I have seen and I found it an underrated tale of revenge and redemption. The screenplay is very well written, disclosing a dramatic story, and supported by great direction and acting and magnificent cinematography. In the end, the viewer is never sure whether Moki is the son of Rurik or Arald but the tears of Karin might indicate that she knows the truth about the fatherhood of Moki. My vote is eight.
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