Narvik (2022)


Movie Details

Narvik (2022)
Director-: Erik Skjoldbjærg
Cast-Erik Skjoldbjærg: Director and writer
Kristine Hartgen: Plays Ingrid Tofte
Carl Martin Eggesbø: Cast member
Christoph Gelfert Mathiesen: Cast member
Henrik Mestad: Plays Major Omberg
Benjamin Noble: Plays Patrick Dalzel-Job
Stig Henrik Hoff: Plays Aslak Tofte
Holger Handtke: Plays General Eduard Dietl
Billy Campbell: Plays Konsul G. L. O. Gibbs
Ollie Campbell: Cast member
Movie type- War/Action
Release date-25 December 2022
IMDB Rating-6.8
Languages- Norwegian, French, English, and German
Duration-1 Hour 48 Minute




In recent months, Norwegians have been experiencing such a small harvest on Netflix, and not only are they embarking on relatively nice genre experiments, but at the same time they are enjoying a decent amount of attention from all over the world. First we were attacked by their Troll, then we got the werewolf horror film Vlk viking, and in the meantime, their most ambitious piece appeared on the streaming platform – the wartime Narvik. It invaded the service a little inconspicuously, but in the end it became a solid hit, which remained at least among the most watched films on Netflix for several weeks. Domestic viewers still hear about war themes, and after the recent success of the award-winning On the Western Front Quiet, they were hungry for another genre entry. However, can the slightly cheaper and more modest Narvik satisfy their more demanding tastes?

Right from the beginning, it is appropriate to say that the creators are working here with a very interesting and strong theme and a chapter of the Second World War, which not everyone is completely familiar with. So we get to the titular Norwegian port city in 1940, which, despite the horrors of war in Europe, tries to be neutral, like the whole country. And since Narvik is an important exporter of iron ore, representatives of the German and British armies meet here. As the ore is essential to Hitler’s war machine, one day the Nazis arrive with not entirely peaceful intentions and begin occupying the town. We then watch the entire event, which culminates in the battle for Narvik, through the eyes of a couple in love, soldier Gunnar and hotel employee Ingrid. And while he and the rest of his company flee the city and become a member of the resistance, she must stay in the city and take care of their son. And they have to do things for it,

Narvik thus analyzes not only the great historical event of Norwegian history ending with Hitler’s first defeat, but at the same time translates still grateful and strong personal motives that point to despair, the desire for survival and the lack of black and white of many decisions. In the first half, the script manages to play out the individual characters and plots really well. Director Erik Skjoldbjærg has a fine craft, he also builds the tension and the growing sense of despair very solidly at the beginning, and luckily also focuses on the central characters, which, thanks to this, grow a little more to the viewer’s heart than in the case of the almost anonymous pawns in On the Western Front Calm. There is not much action here and the visual result is not as striking as with the mentioned German colleagues, but the creators manage to work quite well with a visibly smaller budget. And when the tumult of war does come,

But this form will not last the creators for the entire footage, and in the second half they will start to throw their trump cards out the window. After a nice introduction, the plot sometimes jumps chaotically weeks ahead and jumps from one character to another. In many ways, the story thus becomes quite abbreviated, and important events or decisions of the characters are often not properly portrayed or do not have the right emotional impact. It is clear that the authors tried to include the conflict over Narvik as much as possible, but I do not consider certain creative decisions in the second half to be very happy.

We get a few empty dialogues that lack the right impact and at the end you will find that, despite the sympathetic emphasis on the characters, we simply did not get a properly tense and intense encounter between two different points of view. And it’s a shame especially because we could have seen a much more overwhelming conclusion or dialogue exchange that would have forced the viewer to think. Instead, however, the game played more on genre certainty, and the ending does not leave the viewer with any strong feelings.

Just as On the Western Front Calm did not quite fulfill the potential of an unsurpassed literary masterpiece, Narvik failed to fully live up to the expectations that this war chapter, unknown to many, offered. Yes, it’s still a brisk genre film with no problems in terms of craftsmanship or acting, of which there are really few in recent years, and especially the first hour still serves up a relatively exciting war spectacle. But the promises of great things simply failed to be fulfilled here, and the authors remained standing somewhere in the middle of the road. However, if the Norwegians will continue to try individual genres so sympathetically, I will not be angry at all.

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