Kon Tiki - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Kon Tiki Reviews

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½ August 30, 2017
The cinematography and scenes involving aquatic denizens are amazingly beautiful and awesome. The voyage itself is a bit on the boring side, but thankfully the based on real life characters are portrayed vividly enough by this unknown group of actors that the camaraderie, banter and conflicts overshadow the dull bits. A worthwhile adventure movie.
August 17, 2017
With wonderful direction, beautiful imagery and a fitting score, 'Kon Tiki' speaks to the sense of adventure in every man with a story that shows not only the success and recognition such an epic journey brings, but also the hardships and sacrifices that must be made along the way in order to achieve it. Exciting and tense, you may come out of the other side of this film wondering what lands or oceans you can explore.
August 11, 2017
Norway's Oscar Entry for Best Foreign-Language Film is an intensely gripping dramatisation of the 1947 epic voyage across the Pacific Ocean from South America to the Polynesian islands undertaken by Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl and his crew on the titular raft to substantiate his theory that Polynesia was originally settled by the ancient Peruvians and his unshakable conviction that nature is not an impediment men use modern technology to subdue.
August 9, 2017
Well this was OK. The guy was nuts, and took quite unacceptable risks. And survived. The movie is a little over dramatised, but effective.
½ July 25, 2017
Refreshing true story. No superpowers, no superdrama, only a straight story with some adventure and risk. Makes me want to see the original film of the adventure to compare. DNA studies showed that Polynesians are mostly of asian origin but have American ancestry as well.
July 1, 2017
The film is the dramatized story of legendary explorer Thor Heyerdahl and his Kon-Tiki expedition of 1947. While the prevailing theories of the time held that Polynesia had been settled by peoples migrating from the west, Heyerdahl, an experimental ethnographer and adventurer, sets out to prove his theory that people from South America settled the islands in pre-Columbian times. Noting similarities between statues found in South America and the Polynesian moai, Heyerdahl's theory about the origin of the Polynesian people is bolstered by Polynesian folklore that tells of an ancient tribe called the Hanau epe that are said to have once inhabited Easter Island. While most experts hold that such a voyage across the vast ocean is unlikely to have ever been successful, in order to illustrate that there were no technological limitations that would have inhibited the ancient peoples from making the journey, Heyerdahl puts his theory to the test and builds a balsawood raft using the same techniques that would have been utilized 1500 years ago by the indigenous peoples of the region. Though he himself cannot swim or sail, he sets out on the treacherous 4,300 nautical mile-journey across the Pacific from Peru to Polynesia aboard the small raft, along with his crew of five men (and a macaw named Lorita). During the three months aboard the primitive vessel named after Inca god of sun and storm, Kon-Tiki, the crew's scientific reenactment of the legendary voyage from the coast of Peru to the Polynesian islands is met with setbacks in the form of storms, sharks, and other perils of the open sea...

"Kon-Tiki" was an international co-production between Norway, Denmark, Germany, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. It was the highest-grossing film of 2012 in Norway and the country's most expensive production to date. The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 85th Academy Awards. It is Norway's fifth Academy Award nomination. The film was also nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 70th Golden Globe Awards. It is the first time a Norwegian film has been nominated for both an Oscar and a Golden Globe. Kon-Tiki opened in the United States on 26 April 2013 in a limited release, and was screened in three cinemas. On 3 May 2013, the film expanded to screen in fifty more cinemas and was a major box office success in its home country, Norway, and has since been gathering critical acclaim internationally. The Hollywood Reporter's Sheri Linden says of Kon-Tiki: "This retelling of a bare-bones enterprise by six men took a crew of hundreds, and the results are nothing if not polished, with handsome period detail and visual effects that are convincing, if sometimes ostentatious. The widescreen lensing (the film was shot mainly in and around Malta) doesn't overdo the sense of wonder and, with a strong assist from the sound design, conveys the men's vulnerability to the elements." Andrew Barker of Variety notes that some may take issue with the artistic license the filmmakers took in dramatizing some of the characters and events of the voyage, but describes the film overall as "a visually impeccable, professionally crafted modern vessel that lacks any of the patched-together soul of its subject." While Michael Nordine of LA Weekly laments that Kon-Tiki "could have used a bit more [shark-attracting] blood in the water", he concedes that the "crystal-clear waves are a sight to behold nevertheless." Rotten Tomatoes consensus is: "A well-crafted retelling of an epic true story, Kon-Tiki is a throwback to old-school adventure filmmaking that's exciting and entertaining in spite of its by-the-book plotting."

Thor Heyerdahl's account of his 1947 expedition across the Pacific on a balsa raft has captivated the imagination of generations and this great real life story has just been waiting to be put on the silverscreen. Directors Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg dramatisation of real life explorer Thor Heyerdahl's epic and legendary journey traveling nearly 5,000 miles from Peru to Polynesia in a wooden raft has its moments with impressive sets, environments and CGI. The cinematography is of high standard as well. Then again with that sort of budget you would expect it to be. However, the film has been done in such a comic way and style I personally think the story gets lost with a constant smirking Pål Sverre Valheim Hagen as Heyerdahl and the rest of the characters as they have been written as true stereotypes and their personalities are flatter than a wooden board. The screenplay written by Petter Skavlan and Allan Scott has been beefed up with all sorts of dramatic turns that didn´t happen and from what I have understood the Herman Watzinger character is not particularly accurate with how he was in real life. The directors' excuse for altering the facts is that the book lacked any dramatic tensions, so they had to manufacture some in a classic Hollywood way. They simply took an easy way out with the script and maybe hoped nobody would notice... "Kon-Tiki" is a colourful adventure, but not satisfying for me as it is more of a comedy than a drama it should be and what I expected it to be.
May 28, 2017
Beautiful and interesting.
½ February 5, 2017
I wasn't sure if I would like this but gave it look. And glad I did. Great film about the human spirit and the determination of a dream. Great adventure. Still amazed at how great the Sony fs100 is as a cinema tool.
January 6, 2017
24.08.2012,
06,01,2017
December 30, 2016
A charming film, with some nice scenery and likeable characters. It isn't as exciting as a fictional adventure film might be, but the fact that it is based on a true story makes what DOES happen all the more interesting. I'm interested to learn more about this story - a sign of a good docudrama. The cast, led by Pal Sverre Hagen, is strong and the performances understated, with much told with the eyes. An enjoyable film for a lazy afternoon.
Super Reviewer
½ December 5, 2016
An engaging odyssey with a stunning cinematography that uses an appropriately large depth of field to explore the vastness of the high sea. Also, the characters are complex and well defined in their motivations, in a story that manages to be quite tense.
½ November 2, 2016
A good straight forward film of adventure and endurance
October 29, 2016
More interesting than entertaining
Super Reviewer
October 8, 2016
While the actual science of this real life adventure remains questionable, the Viking/Nordic spirit behind it all sings like the call of the sirens (insert Wagner's RIde of the Valkeries theme here): "let's go sail the Pacific Ocean on a raft, cause I think some of our ancient ancestors did!" Once on the ocean however the enormity of the undertaking sinks home and the tension escalates accordingly. A fine cinematic how-do-you-do all in all.
½ September 24, 2016
When all the hope seems to fade & nothing is going as expected, wait for the fate to decide. Belief is the key & it was nothing but a belief that took those guys across the sea. Hail TiKi.
September 22, 2016
Kon-Tiki is a flawed movie owing to its too ordinary approach to storytelling, but the film succeeds as such a wonderfully traditional and spirited adventure flick with excellent direction from its talented directors, tight editing, a well crafted plot, great attention to detail and absolutely gorgeous visuals.
½ July 18, 2016
I'll forgive the poor casting and over-acting to give it a "pretty good effort" score. One question lingers however; how does one have blonde hair with dark roots after 100 days on a raft in the Pacific?
May 26, 2016
Generally entertaining, though I could've done without the bizarre shark feeding frenzy. Made me want to watch Heyerdahl's original documentary on the expedition.
Super Reviewer
½ March 27, 2016
Beautifully filmed adventure movie about Heyerdahl and his crew crossing the pacific on a raft after WW2. While the enterprise itself goes relatively smoothly there is a wonderfully terrifying shark attack in the middle of the film that's worth the movie already. Especially the camera work and direction are excellent, the script could have used some refining here or there. Heyerdahl is portrayed as oddly arrogant protagonist. Still, a nice film. No wonder the directors are now moving on to Pirates of the Caribbean. Great choice.
February 15, 2016
As a Norwegian film, it is underrated. A true story on an important subject, that is today taken for granted in the modern 'Google Earth' era. This is a good depiction of Thor Heyerdahl's 1947 adventure across the Pacific to prove that it was South Americans, not Asians, who first populated Polynesia.

The true story of the adventurer's obsession to prove a theory is portrayed excellently, in this well-acted and written film, with terrific cinematography. I highly recommend it as a history lesson and good foreign cinema.
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