The 13th Warrior (1999)

The 13th Warrior



Critic Consensus: Atmospheric, great sets and costumes, but thin plot.

Movie Info

Based on Michael Crichton's best-selling novel "Eaters of the Dead," "The 13th Warrior" is an exciting and unforgettable adventure thriller. When an important emissary is abducted by a band of warriors, he is forced to join their quest to battle mysterious creatures legendary for consuming every living thing in their path. Eventually surrounded by the frightening and ferocious foe, Ahmed must conquer his personal fears and help battle the illusive invadors- who emerge out of the shroud of fog in … More

Rating: R (for bloody battles and carnage)
Genre: Action & Adventure, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Cult Movies
Directed By: , , , , , , ,
Written By: William Wisher, Warren Lewis
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 15, 2002
Buena Vista Pictures


as Ahmad Ibn Fadlan

as Queen Weilew

as Melchisidek

as Herger the Joyous

as Skeld The Superstiti...

as Weath the Musician

as Rethel The Archer

as Roneth The Horseman

as Halga the Wise

as Helfdane The Large

as Edgtho the Silent

as Haltaf the Boy

as King Rothgar

as Hyglak The Quarrelso...

as Would-be King

as Old Woman (Oracle)

as Caravan Leader

as One-Eyed Old Man

as Screaming Boy

as Wulfgar (Boy Messeng...

as Herald

as Shaharazhad/Arabian ...

as Shaharazhad's Husban...

as The Caliph

as Sacrificial Woman

as Wendol Mother

as Wendol Mother Compan...

as Arab Page

as Caravan Lieutenant

as Serving Girl

as Serving Girl

as Serving Girl

as Sleeping Girl

as Arab General

as Norseman

as Norseman

as Norseman on Ship

as Wulfgar Retainer

as Wendol Guard
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for The 13th Warrior

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Critic Reviews for The 13th Warrior

All Critics (91) | Top Critics (20)

Michael Crichton's story is underdeveloped and narrow in range, resulting in a tale more curious for its odd confluence of elements than for their edifying deployment.

Full Review… | June 17, 2008
Top Critic

At its best, this achieves the beauty and grandeur of a Kurosawa epic -- at its worst, however, it feels like a Python remake of The Vikings.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

The film is fascinating to watch, but I can hardly say what it's about, other than people killing each other.

Full Review… | July 21, 2005
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic

A big cathartic blast.

Full Review… | March 22, 2002
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

The film feels as hollow as empty armor and slightly hackneyed.

January 1, 2000
Seattle Times
Top Critic

Exciting battle sequences, intriguing period costumes, fascinating cinematography, and stirring background music contribute to the epic nature of 'The 13th Warrior.'

Full Review… | July 10, 2011
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for The 13th Warrior

Really a fun actioner, recalling those glorious days of yesteryear when Vikings strode the earth in all their contempt for civilization. Banderas' best film to my mind, concerns his efforts (as a representative of that sordid weaning place for girly men and intellectuals) to convince of his worth while faced with a enemy that shakes even the manliest of men, the eaters of the dead.

Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Historical Vikings vs barbarians, hack n slash flick made by 'Die Hard' director John McTiernan? should be kick ass right? well sort of, it is a decent flick but its a bit messy and not overly as memorable as you'd think. Based on a Michael Crichton novel (which was all the rage back in the 90's) which involved the curious mix of a travelling exiled Arab poet who befriends and joins a small village of Norsemen (Vikings) and ends up fighting a tribe of barbarian cannibals that dress as bears because they believe they are bears.

The film isn't accurate of course, it is based on actual fact but has been hugely exaggerated and made more exciting for both the novel and film. The lead character 'Fadlan' was a real Arabic traveller and he did go north and experience Viking life but all the battles with cannibals (based on the 'Beowulf' folklore) is complete fantasy.

So the film has a touch of grounding in reality which makes it more interesting and urges you to learn more which is good, the film itself isn't too bad, compared to the novel I don't know but there isn't too much happening in the film other than time wasting dialog inter-spursted with pitched battles. The dialog is very wooden really and somewhat 'state the obvious' all the time, the film does feel a little rushed and choppy probably due to the problems whist being made and really the battles, which are the focal point, aren't all that good either.

The film is solid and is reasonably interesting but it just feels very underwhelming, as if there is a really really good kick ass film somewhere in there wanting to get out. Banderas looks the part of the Arab and the Viking cast also look good as does the cold looking muddy location work but Sharif seems to have been stuck in there simply for big name status and to try and elevate the film to epic levels as he does pretty much nothing of importance and disappears very quickly.

The film does get slightly more silly as it progresses towards the end but all in all it just about does the job of keeping you entertained. The barbarian hordes the Vikings fend off are too unrealistic really I think, that's the problem, and of course most of them are all just sword fodder for the heroes so the usual thing. I think 'Pathfinder' does it better.

Phil Hubbs

Super Reviewer

Interesting action film that delivers on action and thrills. Although at times lacking, The 13th Warrior is good entertainment. Although lacking at times, the film has some solid action, and in the end it's what makes this film worth watching. The 13th Warrior is a mindless action romp set against a historical background. Directed by John McTiernan, director of Die Hard, this film delivers action and thrills that will please any action movie fan. Antonio Banderas is pretty good here, and along with The Mask of Zorro, this is one of his more enjoyable film. Although lacking at times in story, the film delivers effective action that makes this film worth watching. There's a good cast here, nothing ever too grand, but they all give decent enough performances to make this film interesting. The film relies on the action to deliver the thrills, thus the 13th Warrior is short on a epic story, but in the end it's not a big deal. The film is a popcorn flick in the end, and it most certainly delivers the action you'd expect. Despite its imperfections, this is a well made actioner that's simply designed to entertain you. 13th Warrior is fun from start to finish and is very violent, action packed and moves at a fast pace.Not a great film, but still worth watching for an entertaining evening of mindless action.

Alex roy

Super Reviewer

The 13th Warrior Quotes

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– Submitted by Al M (4 years ago)

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