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To honour her father's dying wish, Queen Salina shares the rule of Icena with Justinian, a fair and just Roman. This displeases the bloodthirsty Druids on one side and the more hard-line Romans on the other. As Salina and Justinian fall in love their enemies start to plot, and blood soon stains the green hills of Britain. Written by
Jeremy Perkins <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"If any virgins are to be sacrificed, it'll be to us!" The Viking Queen is utter nonsense of the most enjoyable kind. There are no Vikings, although there are plenty of Romans and the odd wristwatch in this low-budget and wildly anachronistic attempt at a British peplum more or less inspired by Boudicca's ill-fated rebellion against the Roman Empire that makes full use of the Irish scenery, the Irish Army and Irish tax breaks. Hammer's latest disposable discovery Carita takes the lead with Don Murray playing the Roman-tic interest that would have been played by Rory Calhoun or Steve Reeves in an Italian film, their budding love thwarted as they find themselves on opposite sides thanks to plotting Roman officers (the ever-undervalued Andrew Keir) and devious druids (Donald Houston, dressed up like the Ghost of Christmas Past and hamming it up mightily) stirring things up. Period accuracy is less a factor than what costumes they have left over from other pictures, leading to some interesting sartorial clashes, while it's hard to take characters seriously when they're given names like Priam and Nigel, but the setting is just an excuse for the odd bit of sadism, torture, sacrifice and the odd skirmish en route to the inevitable tragic ending. The battle scenes are clumsily handled by director Don Chaffey, but the supporting cast are rather better than the script deserves Patrick Troughton, Niall MacGinnis (both surprisingly good), Adrienne Corri, Nicola Pagett, Percy Herbert and Wilfred Lawson among them it's nicely photographed by Zulu's Stephen Dade and it's more than passable brains-off entertainment.
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