Thor Movie Review

Thor

IGPNicki reviews Thor

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 


I was very much surprised when Marvel announced that Kenneth Branagh was attached to direct Thor. Having seen the Asgard sequences, it’s no surprise that they brought Branagh on. He brings his RADA/Shakespearean training to the screen, giving gravitas and an epic feel to the scenes on Asgard. However, while much screen time is spent on Asgard, the same cannot be said of the Earth scenes and this is ultimately why the movie fails.

Thor spends so little time on Earth. We never get to see him adjust to his time here. Let’s just say, the fish out of water stuff could have been taken a lot further. Instead, so much is mentioned off screen, such as a bar scene which would’ve been fun to behold but will be no doubt be relegated to DVD extras. Also, Thor apparently shares a connection with Jane Foster, but I’ll be damned if I could spot it on screen except for some mild flirting. I can easily believe that she would be all googley eyed over the mysterious Thor, but in all honesty, I don’t see why he feels the same. And yet, at the end, we’re supposed to believe that Thor has changed and become worthy during his time on Earth? How? When? It is a classic case of show, don’t tell.
Thor Warriors Three Sif
So if the movie doesn’t spend enough time building up Thor’s character arc on Earth, where does it spend its time? Well, there’s an awful lot of time on Asgard. That’s not really surprising since there is a low of backstory to cover so I can’t really complain about that. But there is also a lot of time spent with SHIELD and that is problematic. For one thing, if you’ve never seen Iron Man, you’re gonna be pretty confused. For another, it feels too much like an ad for The Avengers. Don’t believe me? Check out the cameo of Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, in a scene that was added only after they wrapped filming on Thor.

This isn’t to say that Thor’s a bad movie. It has plenty of funny moments, and the scenes on Asgard are really cool to watch. Chris Hemsworth is completely charming and believable as the arrogant Thor and Tom Hiddleston too is excellent as Loki. Although, I do wish they hadn’t made him look quite so evil and weedy looking. I mean seriously, looking like that, and named Loki, how could the Asgard not realise he was gonna be up to no good? Of the Earth characters, Kat Dennings had some of the best lines. Natalie Portman on the other hand left me… well, cold. There was nothing particularly interesting about her character. And the sad thing is that I can’t honestly say if that was Portman’s fault or the fault of a fairly thin script. But at least she didn’t need to be rescued, which is a huge step up from the typical love interest in a comic book. But this is an action movie and so I am going to have to address the action sequences. Well, that was another strange thing about Thor. The movie hits a great high with the attack on the Frost Giants early on, but both the later action sequences on Earth and Asgard seem muted in comparison, as though they blew their budget too early. And the final action sequence is wrapped a little conveniently.

Best Moment:

Loved the movie’s first big battle sequence when Thor and friends decide to confront the Frost Giants. Pretty much all of the Asgard sequences were beautifully done. Also liked the scene where SHIELD agents are forced to wonder if there is a Ren Faire in town. But for all around funniest moments, for me, it was getting to see Babylon 5 creator (and Thor writer) J. Michael Straczynski appear on screen as he discovers Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir.

Verdict:

Overall, this was a decent, fun summer movie. It’s not one I’d need to see again. It’s no Iron Man, but it’s enjoyable enough.