It’s been almost a decade since Marvel Studio’s launched their cinematic universe with the first “Iron Man” film. Since then, we have seen Captain America, Thor, Ant-Man, Spider-Man, and other’s brought to the big screen. However, the first two “Thor” films I found to be quite underwhelming. They seriously lacked in fun. The same can’t be said for the God of Thunder’s third film, “Thor: Ragnarok”. Director Taika Waititi (“What We Do in the Shadows”) brings his unique brand of humor to Marvel and delivers a fun ride.
Two years have passed since the Battle of Sokovia in “Avengers: Age of Ultron”. Since that time, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) have been missing in action. While Banner aka The Hulk mysteriously vanished, Thor went on a quest through the galaxy in search of the Infinity Stones. When Thor arrives back at Asgard, he learns that his brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), has been impersonating their father Odin (Anthony Hopkins). Look out for a hilarious cameo during an Asgard theater production. Shortly after the siblings reunite with Odin, a new threat emerges, Hela, God of Death (Cate Blachett). Her plan is to not only rule Asgard, but the Nine Realms as well.
Thor and Loki’s initial confrontation with Hela causes the brothers to crash land on planet Sakaar, ruled by the Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum). This leads to Thor’s reunion with Banner, however, the doctor has been living as the Hulk for two years and the green giant has gotten a little bit smarter since the last we saw him. Those of you who are looking forward to the Thor versus Hulk gladiator match won’t be disappointed, and Loki’s reaction to the fight it easily one of the best parts.
What I really enjoyed about “Thor: Ragnarok” is that I didn’t find it predictable. There are a handful of story elements that went in a different direction than I would have expected. I also love how Thor has grown in terms of his relationship with his brother. Thor loves Loki but has come to terms that his brother is who he is and he is fine with it. He accepts it.
Cate Blanchett’s Hela is probably one of the best villain’s in the Marvel cinematic universe since Loki. Although I felt like she wasn’t given enough to do, she is still a pleasure to watch and we can tell she is having a great time with the role. If the villain isn’t interesting, the movie isn’t going to be interesting. That was one of the problems with “Thor: A Dark World”.
“Thor: Ragnarok” amps up the comedy quite a bit, so if you are looking for a more serious comic book film, this isn’t it. This film shares more in common with the “Guardians of the Galaxy” films than any of the previous “Thor” films. That is also at times an issue I had. I love Goldblum, but I found him to be way too silly here. He began to get on my nerves. Thankfully he isn’t in a great deal of the film. Some of the banter between Hulk and Thor was also a bit too silly for me, but it also kind of went with the tone of the film.
If you are a fan of the Marvel films, you are going to enjoy this one as well. I am guessing it will be the second biggest film of the season before Disney crushes its’ own film with the new “Star Wars” next month.
By: Marc Ferman