Here is what is true about Norwegian Ninja. In 1984 Norwegian diplomat Arne Treholt was convicted of high treason and selling state secrets. He was convicted to a twenty year prison term and served eight of them before being pardoned in 1992. Treholt has been living in exile on the island of Cyprus ever since. He has always maintained his innocence regarding the charges he faced.
What is also true is that around that time during the Cold War
period NATO and the CIA secretly operated what are known as Stay-Behind
Forces throughout Europe. The intention for these groups were that they
were to be a built-in resistance should the Russians invade. What
happened was either there was an itch that needed to be scratched or
they were following orders but some of these groups carried out
terrorist attacks on friendly soil. The purpose was to stoke fear of
Soviet invasion and allow the military and secret services influence
across the region. So, in 1978 Norwegian police discovered a large cache
of weapons on the property of Hans Otto Meyer. Meyer was a Norwegian
Intelligence Service officer and believed to be the head of the
Norwegian Stay Behind Force.
So Thomas Malling
takes these two documented accounts and molds them into one story. Then
he finds a fair share of archival footage which shows how real those
circumstances were and how real the fear was. Then he creates a story
about a commune of Ninjas, who live on an island protected by Feng Shui,
who were sanctioned by the King to protect Norway and her interests.
Malling pits Treholt and Meyer against each other, making their stories
one. One wants the Ninjas disbanded, the other wants to expose the
Take the real life
accounts of a Norwegian diplomat using archival footage and ask a simple
question, 'What if Treholt was a Ninja and these events were all part
of a greater scheme and plan?' Suddenly the true life accounts take on
these fantastical elements, like discovering that if you stand on the
seat of a playground swing your life changes. Yeah, the story is the
same; it just became much more awesome though. I mean, NINJAS! Norwegian
Ninja walks the fine line between fiction and fantasy. So well, and so
convincing is the director's vision, that you could almost believe it to
be true. If it weren't for such things as the miniature practical
effects, which pay homage to the most popular Norwegian film of all
time, the stop animated film Flåklypa Grand Prix, you might just do so.
the film feels a touch clunky at times and flow of the narrative
suffers a slight bit as a result Norwegian Ninja still delivers plenty
laughs and excitement. I'd write more about it but Todd is punching me
in either shoulder blade and my arms are beginning to numb up. Someone's
been taking Ninja lessons from Malling.