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Icelandic Sagas

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Anyone else love the Icelandic sagas...or read any of them?

Njal's Saga is the best known and most highly regarded. Its a fabulous read - it gallops along, a fantastic story with great characters and you really, care about them!

I also like the Laxdaela saga - again the characters are so well drawn, you feel personally involved with their stories, and devastated as they get killed off...


Many of the others arent as accessible - I didnt feel the same involvement with Egil's Saga, and the others such as the Orkneyinga Saga just arent in the same ripping yarn story league.



Original manuscripts are on display in Reykjavik

Image


http://www.sagadb.org/brennu-njals_saga.en
http://www.sagadb.org/laxdaela_saga.en

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It's coming yet for a' that, that Man to Man, the world o'er, shall brothers be for a' that. (Robert Burns)

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Whirliegig wrote:oh well.




Now I do remember these. Vaguely. Oliver Postgate of Clangers fame.

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here's Noggin the Nog part 2


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Some more ...


1959 Noggin


Noggin the Nog - The Omruds

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Your post made me realise how I'd always known ABOUT the Icelandic saga's, but actually never read any of them.... There will have to be one soon on my ever growing 'to read pile'.....

I did however one day stumble upon an amazing Icelandic movie called: Hrafninn flýgur (When the Raven flies) by an Icelandic director called Hrafn Gunnlaugsson, which at the time impressed me a lot.

From an IMDB reviewer:
"When the Raven Flies" death is coming....in this stark, brutal and gloomy tale of unrelenting vengeance. A Celtic Christian boy's family in Ireland is wiped out in a Viking raid, with his older sister carried off into sexual bondage. When he becomes a man, he tracks down the band of exiles all the way to Iceland where they await the death of their enemy, King Harald of Norway. One by one he patiently stalks each member of the band and cunningly turns their barbaric superstitions and brutish natures against them. The authenticity of the Icelandic setting and the grubbiness of the actors lend veracity to this depiction of this dark period in Scandinavian history in which the blood feuds lasted for generations. This film has a strangely compelling beauty threaded through its dominant theme of violence begetting violence in a self-perpetuating cycle."

The film stuck in my memory and for years I searched for it, until I finally found that the director himself had released copies and I managed to get hold of one, only to find it had been far better in my mind somehow and the music, which hadn't bothered me before, seemed highly irritating this time.
Though it's still an interesting film and it has a small but enthusiastic fan base.

I'm thinking of giving my copy to the local Cult Movie Videotheque, so more people can see it.

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i looked it up on youtube


heres the trailer...






and this is an interesting article on the filming/behind the scenes .


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Oh dear oh dear...... the trailer doesn't do it justice at all.... Please ignore that....

It's actually rather slow paced and 'silent' not at all like this action packed trailer with horrible music (not at all like the original score) is suggesting...

AND it's dubbed!

....what a shame....

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oh heres some original Icelandic - with Swedish ( I think) subtitles.



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See how much better that sounds already? :D

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Nogbad the bad, but not Nog-good the slightly delinquent. :)



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I studied some of the Sagas as part of my English Lit degree, and I fucking loved them. All the encoded signals in them were fascinating- blue was the colour of death, and the hero smiles in the face of death, so if a chapter ends with a dude grinning and putting on his blue shirt, you just KNOW someone's not getting out alive...

I also found it interesting the way the whole honour system pretty much guaranteed that everyone had to die- most of the sagas start out as small legal disputes over horses and land and stuff, and end up in massive, multi-generational blood feuds (Njal's Saga's a good example of this). It's quite tragic that that's the way things were in real life, but it makes for an awesome read.

If anyone's interested, I recommend the Saga Museum in Reykjavik- been there a couple of times and it's way cool.

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