History does not have to be all dusty books and facts. Since it is almost summer, we here in the Executive Offices of History Guffaw (this place is better than Hogwarts, an automatic latte machine, full-time foot masseuse and the entire staff has their own individual bathrooms) want you, the ever loyal reader, to have fun. How about a movie? Don’t want to spend $10? Good because we weren’t going to spot you. How about a rental? A movie from the past about the past…
To be completely honest, it does not take much to blow the Guffaw’s mind. That is a good thing for the movie, Pathfinder. There was literally nothing “good” about this movie. Historically correct? Not even close. Well-acted and well-choreographed action scenes? Not really. Memorable pieces of dialogue, the Guffaw watched this movie for the first time this morning and can’t remember one piece of dialogue as of writing. Yet, the Guffaw was entertained. Pathfinder was the equivalent of a lava lamp for movies… it was hard to look away.
Any who, Pathfinder tells the story of murderous Vikings who want to kill all Native-Americans so they can settle America and never have to live under the shadow of socialism (the Guffaw conjectured on that last point just in case Glen Beck was reading). They make one mistake. They leave a child. That child grows up to be built like Karl Urban. He has the power of Vikings and Native Americans making him awesome and with the ability to fight most of the time in a loin cloth, in the snow without numbing or frostbite. Game over Vikings. Looks like state provided services for all your ancestors.
What is historically accurate about this movie?
Absolutely nothing. Vikings, while they certainly had their moments of violence were also merchants. They did have a settlement on the coast of North America in present day Newfoundland, Canada called Vinland. They left after not getting along the “skraelings” as they called the Native Americans and Newfoundland is not exactly a vacation spot. Also in the film the Vikings all wear the same uniform with horned helmets. The Vikings were tradesmen and plunderers. They did not have a standard uniform. The Guffaw digresses.
Will I care about any of these questions when I watch this movie?
No, if you turn off your brain you won’t care. If you turn on your brain, then your brain will get angry, make you do some long-division, shut down again to finish watching the movie.
Is this movie kinda racist?
In two words, kinda yes. Vikings are portrayed as bloodthirsty thugs hellbent on inflicting a holocaust on Native Americans. Native Americans are portrayed as a child-like race that can only be saved by a white guy.
Who should watch this movie?
Americans, no one invades this country not Vikings, not Nazis or Commies just god-fearing white pilgrims and some free labor from the continent of Africa. Zach Snyder should also watch, as bad as Pathfinder is the movie moves much faster when every arrow shot or sword swung is not put into slow-motion.
What will I learn from this movie, history wise?
Less than nothing, the makers of this movie went out of their way to divorce it from any historical reality. The Native Americans live in these weird tree-house low-level houses for no reason other than they look different. The Vikings all are all built like Jose Canseco and Mark McGwire on the Oakland A’s, armored like a Sherman tank and yet move with a gracefulness of a Moscow ballerina. Yes, there were Vikings and there were Native Americans, that is all the historical knowledge this movie imparts.
Pathfinder was awful on almost all levels except one, it was so silly and by the numbers action-drama that the Guffaw would have to think twice about turning the channel if it came on.