Out of all the movies in the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe), Thor’s solo outings have always been the weakest in my opinion. He has normally been bogged down in earthly issues and unfairly limited in terms of character development. However, Thor: Ragnarok is a significant departure from previous films. It looks like the God of Thunder finally has a movie under his belt that is becoming of him.
In Ragnarok, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is challenged by the murderous Hela (Cate Blanchett), who is bent on destroying his beloved Asgard. In leading up to their epic face-off he must also deal with smaller challenges like being imprisoned on the planet of Sacar and outsmarting the eccentric tyrant named Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum). Thor’s exploits unite him with old friends Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) and Heimdall (Idris Elba) as well as new friends like Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) and Korg (Taika Waititi).
This was the most fun I’ve had at the theater all year. Ragnarok is a fun, colorful film that had me and my fellow audience members roaring with laughter from the very beginning. It’s easily the best Thor movie and is a little reminiscent of both Guardians of the Galaxy and Doctor Strange in the sense that fans finally get to explore other planets and worlds rather than be confined to adventures on Earth.
Hemsworth has always been well-cast as the mighty warrior and it’s gratifying to see a new vigor infused into his story line. Everything about Ragnarok works in his favor. As an actor he seems to be having a great time, which makes the film even better.
There are new interesting characters who add a lot to the story; Tessa Thompson plays a fierce warrior with a surprising connection to Asgard and director Waititi joins in on the fun as a new character named Korg who has the best one-liners in the film. He’s an unexpected delight and I fully anticipate seeing both reprise their roles.
Hulk has been M.I.A for a little while now and Ruffalo is in great form as usual. I liked seeing him and Thor team up, especially since Banner always seemed closer to Stark. They are an unlikely pair and I think that’s what makes them even more likable and entertaining together.
The same has certainly been true for Thor and Loki (Tom Hiddleston) whose relationship seems to be on the uptake in this latest installment. Sure, Loki will always be Loki, which means he will always be duplicitous in nature, but there were some moments where he surprised me. Hiddleston has always done the character such justice and I look forward to seeing what his involvement is (if any) in Infinity War.
Goldblum’s Grandmaster is a wacky addition and it’s pure entertainment seeing the jokes fly as the seasoned actor brings this character to life.
Hela is no doubt frightening and a formidable opponent for Thor. Blanchett is obviously a great talent and I think it’s cool that she is the first female villain in the MCU. I didn’t know much about her going in, but she certainly has a lot to be angry about as revealed in her exposition toward the beginning of the movie.
More than anything else Ragnarok is a beautiful looking film. This was something else that made the film distinctive; Thor is usually featured against a murky, drab backdrop, but here there are so many vibrant scenes and set pieces and every frame is incredibly appealing to the eye.
I’m always impressed by how well Marvel balances so many moving pieces in one movie. Director Taika Watiti deserves a lot of the credit for making it happen in this film. The acting is solid, the humor is well placed and there is never a dull moment.
If you aren’t already well-versed with the MCU and Thor’s arc in particular, the multiple sub-plots may seem a little dizzying at times, but I think you can still have a good time with this movie.
Ragnarok is pretty lengthy and clocks in at two hours and ten minutes. The length may be off-putting to some, but it really does fly by.
Thor: Ragnarok is directed by Taika Waititi (Hunt for the Wilderpeople) and stars: Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Mark Ruffalo, Tessa Thompson, Karl Urban, Idris Elba, Jeff Goldblum, Cate Blanchett and Anthony Hopkins. It is currently showing in theaters! Make sure you stay all the way through the closing credits 🙂
Have you seen it yet? Tell me all about your favorite moment(s) in the comments below!