As much as I am a big fan of Tom Hiddleston and Loki, I honestly don’t get that excited for films in the Thor franchise. However, this year’s “Thor: Ragnarok” was one that I was looking forward to as I wanted to see how it would handle the whole “Planet Hulk” story line combined with the Ragnarok story line. The first film was alright, the second one was too dark for a Thor film, and this one surprised me with how comic book like and fun it was. Thus, this was easily my most favorite Thor movie to date.
“Thor:Ragnarok” was directed by Taika Watiti, and saw Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Idris Elba and Anthony Hopkins reprise their roles in the previous films, while Mark Ruffalo starred as Bruce Banner/the Hulk. It also starred Cate Blanchett as Hela, Jeff Goldblum as the Grandmaster, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, and Karl Urban as Skurge. (Interestingly enough, both Blanchett and Urban were both in the Lord of the Rings film franchise as Galadriel and Eomer, respectively).
Timeline wise, this film is set two whole years after “Avengers: Age of Ultron”.
In a nutshell, this film is almost like a buddy cop adventure film in which Thor and his friends team up together to stop Hela and the prophesied Ragnarok that would happen to Asgard.
This film seemed like the most comic book film in the Thor film franchise as it was able to balance out humor, adventure, and all the craziness that you would expect from an adventure set in outer space. The humor in this film was quite refreshing and genuine, and I’m not surprised about this as Waititi apparently allowed the actors to improvise a lot while filming this movie.
Because of this, Hemsworth looks more at home and genuinely comfortable with his character. I only wish that we could have gotten more of this version of Thor earlier on.
Blanchett as the first female villain was amazingly terrifying, and did have more layers than most MCU villains, but also still did fall into the same beats as other MCU villains at times. However, performance wise, Blanchett was amazing.
Just like Hemsworth, it seems like Ruffallo has also gotten more comfortable with his character, and his banter with Hemsworth, both as the Hulk and Banner, was amazing to see.
All in all, this film was everything that a Thor film should be- fun and colorful, yet with high stakes and the occasional emotional scene. This was definitely a much needed breath of fresh air in the Thor film franchise, as we were able not only to see a different side to Thor, but we were able to also get into his headspace and empathize with him more.
Alright, you know the drill, from here on out, there will be spoilers!
First off, I didn’t expect that I would be laughing out loud a lot during this film. However, despite the great sense of humor in the film, it did not go up to the point that it would become a comedy. This, of course, is largely in part as Waititi allowed the actors to improvise during filming, which made those scenes seem more genuine and natural.
I did expect to see Odin during the film, but I did not expect him to die, or as I put it to my mother, “become akin to a Force ghost”, which, in turn set in motion the return of Hela, who, in this film, is Odin’s first born.
Odin, in the previous films, felt like that stern loving father that you went out of your way to please. However, in this film, even if it was just for a short time, we see Odin here more as a father who does love his sons dearly. In fact, it reminded me of the fact that in “Loki: Agent of Asgard”, Odin was banished and had very father-like conversations with Loki when Loki visited him there.
I loved the fact that aside from the humor, we were able to properly empathize with Thor, as we were able to understand what he was going through, and we were rooting for him all the way, especially after Hela destroyed his hammer, and it seemed like he couldn’t rely just on his powers to defeat the Hulk when they fought against each other. But, in the end, we see that the hammer was just there to focus his powers, and he’s able to unleash his wrath on Hela without using his hammer.
Banner’s/the Hulk’s journey here was also pretty interesting. Banner has always been afraid of not being able to control his Hulk side, always thought of it as a curse, and would rather be a superhero as Banner rather than the Hulk. However, the Hulk will always be a part of him, and in the end, I love how he transformed into the Hulk in order to help save the Asgardians.
My only gripe with this version of the Hulk is that it was never hinted at before that you could actually hold long-ish conversations with the Hulk, and then all of a sudden, he ca in this film.
Skurge’s journey is also something to note, as he started out just wanting recognition, to becoming Hela’s “executioner”, to redeeming himself by unleashing everything his shotguns had on Hela’s minions. Urban, however, was just amazing as Skurge.
With Hela, Blanchett’s performance was amazing, and she wasn’t as one note as other MCU villains, but in the end, she was destroyed in a very predictable manner.
Hiddleston, who will always be amazing as Loki, I felt, wasn’t utilized that much, and stayed in the same story beats as he usually does. This makes me think that he did steal the tesseract Infinity Stone while getting Surtur’s helmet. Loki is an anti-hero, but in the films, he’s becoming more of a Han Solo kind of hero instead of remaining that unpredictable force that the god of mischief should be.
Jeff Goldblum as the Grandmaster was just awesome, and I probably could just Goldblum be the Grandmaster for an entire film.
Tessa Thompson was great as Valkyrie, although I did get a little bit confused as to whether she is just meant to represent all the Valkyries or Angela from the comics.
Waititi as Korg was also a stroke of genius, and I like how this film directly leads into “Avengers: Infinity War”.
With regards to direction and the visuals, this film was well done. However, I didn’t really like the music, which is weird, as I’ve liked every soundtrack in the MCU to date.
In the end, “Thor: Ragnarok” is definitely a must watch, and I highly recommend that you watch this in the cinema due to the visuals. This was a highly entertaining film that was a much needed breath of fresh air in the Thor film franchise, as it shifted the tone into the bright, and crazy adventures that Thor should be.
Did you like “Thor: Ragnarok”? What did you or didn’t you like in the film? Let me know what you think in the comments below!