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Movie Review: ‘Freydís and Gudrid’ – Music and Reckoning Through the Vinland Sagas



Freydís and Gudrid” is a beautiful narrative musical by Jeffery Leiser that takes viewers on an epic journey into the world of the Icelandic Vinland sagas.

This film’s narrative equally feels suited for Broadway or any stage/theatre production as it does for the big screen in this case. It carefully weaves a story of intrigue, adventure, and profound personal reckoning all in a musical.

The narrative centers on a group of merchants and Vikings, navigating the tumultuous waters of both external conflict and internal strife. The historical context of the Vinland Sagas provides a rich backdrop for the unfolding drama, immersing the audience in a time of exploration and discovery. However, what sets this film apart is not just its historical grounding, but its dramatic emotional core, driven by the powerful performances of its lead characters, Freydís and Gudrid.

Kirsten Chambers and Micaëla Oeste are nothing short of perfection in their roles as Freydís and Gudrid. Their casting is a stroke of genius, as both actresses bring a depth of understanding and vocal prowess that is essential for a film where all dialogue is conveyed through singing. Their performances are not only vocally stunning but also imbued with the right inflections and movements that bring their characters to life. Their portrayal of two women facing their reckonings is both poignant and compelling, drawing the viewer into their journey with every note and gesture.

The music of “Freydís and Gudrid” is fresh and original, with a score that is integral to the storytelling. Leiser’s compositions are not mere background music. They are the heartbeat of the narrative, conveying the right emotions needed to appreciate and enjoy the film. The lyricism is particularly noteworthy, creatively encapsulating the essence of the characters’ journeys and the epic scope of the story. The songs take the audience on an emotional ride, making the narrative not just seen but deeply felt.

But it is not just these two who deliver on the performances. The supporting actors in the film equally deliver in their roles.

Visually, the film is a decent feast for the eyes. The decision to shoot in black and white is bold, yet it enhances the world-building and storytelling, providing a timeless quality that aligns perfectly with the saga’s historic roots. The cinematography and camera movements are commendable, combining with visual effects to create a believable and immersive set design. The art direction, while perhaps not lavish, is more than sufficient to complete the experience, grounding the epic narrative and making it believable.

The editing of “Freydís and Gudrid” deserves special mention. The seamless fusion of on-location shots with those done on a sound stage using green screen technology is a testament to Leiser’s vision and commitment to making this film what it is. The transitions are smooth, maintaining the film’s immersive quality and ensuring that the audience remains engaged throughout.


You can almost see and feel the dedication to this project which is evident in every frame, from the direction to the keying and compositing showcasing his commitment to bringing this story to life.

Ultimately, “Freydís and Gudrid” is more than just a passion project for its makers. The commitment to this passion project shines through in every aspect, from the attention given to all the production elements and the heartfelt performances of the cast.

This musical drama is a testament to what can be achieved when creativity and dedication converge. It stands as a compelling narrative that not only honors the rich history of the Vinland Sagas but also offers a fresh, original take on storytelling through the medium of a musical film.

I will score this film 6.5/10. It is certainly one that would be enjoyed by anyone who appreciates the fusion of music, drama, and epic storytelling.

Second on my list of addictions is Movies.. the only thing I could possibly love more is my Dearest Waakye lol. Nothing else does a better job of reminding me that ANYTHING is possible with the right amount of effort. I have great eye for details and flaws in scripts. Shallow scripts bore me. I am an avid reader. Your everyday Mr Nice guy. Always the last to speak in a room full of smart people. Half Human, half Martian but full MOVIE FREAK.

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