"I would rather be in Hel with my family, than in heaven with my enemies." - Redbad, circa 700 AD
Updated: Feb 7, 2022
Redbad is a famous Heathen. He is known for denying baptism because the monks told him that his forefathers are in hell, and will never be in Heaven. Redbad responded with the famous line: "I would rather be in Hel with my family, than in Heaven, with my enemies." I want to encourage you all to rent (or watch, or buy) the Dutch movie 'Redbad.' If you are an Amazon Prime member, you can watch the movie FREE on Amazon Prime. Please watch the trailor here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CbGmb_rdbg While there are some historical inaccuracies, there are historical accuracies.
INACCURACIES (the ones that matter): 1. The film depicts Redbad as doubting his Heathen faith, and marrying a Christian wife. The historical Redbad was a staunch supporter of Heathenry, and fought against Christianization. He did not marry a Christian Danish woman. Redbad expelled Christian monks from Frisia.
2. The film shows Redbad's father, Aldegisel, as a Heathen not willing to change the religion or culture of his people. The historical Aldegisel, wanted to Christianize Frisia, and did. The historical Redbad, reversed his fathers' policies. The film Redbad, switches the religious beliefs of both, and there was no need to do so. 3. The time period the film lists is 754 AD. Redbad died in 719 AD. Zero reason to change the time period in the film. 4. The film shows the Franks destroying Donar's Oak in FRISIA (north-west of Old Saxony), not in the lands of the Chatti, south of Old Saxony. The film also shows Willlibrord, the teacher of Boniface chopping the Oak down, with Boniface watching, and not Boniface himself. Boniface is the one who destroyed Donar's Oak. Donar's Oak was a holy site of the Chatti, 50 KM south of the Old Saxon Irminsul. Donar's Oak was a holy place of an entirely different tribe than the Frisians, as Donar's Oak was a holy site of the Chatti. The depiction of the Donar's Oak destruction, is probably quite accurate. The horror of Christian violence is accurately depicted, which is refreshing to see, and most TV shows and movies do shy away from this subject altogether. 5. I disagree with the Frisians venerating Frejya and not knowing Odin's wife. I disagree with the portrayal of Frisians doing human sacrifice of just their women, and burnt at the stake as opposed to hung on trees to Woden. Frisians only sacrificed prisoners of War to Woden, see my blog on Human Sacrifice and all of the historical references and sources listed there. 6. The clothes are just awful, dreadful, but then again, all shows and movies like Vikings, The Last Kingdom, Northmen: A Viking Saga seem to come from Star Wars and Sons of Anarchy biker leather, more than any historical finds. It would be far better and cheaper to have historically accurate clothing. Chain mail armor and helmets depicted come far later than circa 700. A christian army looking like the Knight's Templar is also about 500-600 years too early. Heathen peoples did not only wear dark colored clothes. The opposite is true, they loved yellow, green, red, blue, etc. They wore linen in the summer, and wool in the winter. They had many different colored dyes, and if anything, black was the very rare color in this time period.
ACCURACIES 1. Despite Christians whining saying "Christianity never committed genocides nor forced people to be Christians" (REALLY?), the film shows this accurately and fairly. Thor's Oak (Donar's Oak) was cut down by a Frankish Army accompanied by missionaries, monks, and bishops. This was forced, and is historical fact as portrayed in the movie. The idea that Heathens did not defend themselves and their holy places and just "peacefully watched" is not only historically inaccurate, but absurd. The christians did cut off their hands and limbs after defeating Heathens refusing to get baptised and defending holy sites. There are so many historical examples of forced baptisms, the movie portrays several of them. Like Schindler's list accurately depicting the horrors of the Holocaust, this film accurately (on several occasions) shows destruction of Heathen shrines/hofs, people refusing to be baptized murdered by soldiers, or the women having their hands (or heads) chopped off for fighting forced baptism. This DID happen historically, and Christians whining about it on social media is just lack of education and denial of historical fact on their part. Christian armies did do this, and people need to accept it. 2. It is said that Redbad was nearly baptised, but refused when he was told that he would not be able to find any of his ancestors in Heaven after his death, since he preferred spending eternity in Hell with his Heathen ancestors than in Heaven with his enemies. This is attested in historical sources (Friese sagen & Terugkeer (2000), Conserve, Uitgeverij, Redbald en Wulfram. ISBN 978-90-5429-138-1) and is discussed in several books. The movie shows this amazing scene, Redbad, almost agreeing to be baptized, he asks the Bishop questions, and when the bishop tells him he will not see his Heathen Ancestors in Heaven, Redbad got angry. I imagine this was indeed a common thought that those being forcefully converted feared, coming from an Ancestral background. 3. This movie has the best set I have ever seen. The Longhouses are INTIMATELY better than any other movie or TV show, and are exact historical replicas (with the lone exception of weaved artwork on the walls of the interior of the longhouses.) Please visit our Facebook page "Germanic Heathenry" and our Facebook group "Aldsidu: Saxon Heathenry."