Opinion, Reviews

A review: ‘Thor: Ragnorok’

(WARRENSBURG, Mo.) – Marvel appears to have done it again. The recently released “Thor: Ragnorok” has received success from critics and audience members. This marks the 17th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the third in the Thor series, and the fifth of phase three for the franchise. In “Thor: Ragnorok”, Thor, the Norse God of Thunder, must battle Hela, the Norse Goddess of Death, as she tries to conjure Asgard and all the other realms.

This film features several new characters, but some familiar ones as well. Hulk/Bruce Banner, played by Mark Ruffalo, and Loki, played by Tom Hiddleston, are main characters, and even Dr. Strange, played by Benedict Cumberbatch, makes an appearance. My favorite part was seeing Thor, Hulk and Loki on screen again; it’s been a few years. I also thought those characters, including some others, had interesting story arcs. I like how they have evolved over the course of several movies. Plus, seeing Loki’s fear of the Hulk, due to their last encounter, is pretty funny.

To be honest, the first two Thor movies were mediocre. Both were arguably just filler, killing time until the next Avengers movie came out. They were okay and kind of forgettable. Strangely, I thought “Thor: Ragnorok”, was pretty good. Rarely is the third movie better than either of the previous ones. It’s like the Iron Man series, only in reverse.

However, there is a downside to “Ragnorok” that bothered me at first. I have a friend who joked that this movie should be called “Guardians of The Galaxy 3.” He has a point. This film, and several other Marvel films have tried to copy the “Guardians of The Galaxy” style. Since “Guardians of The Galaxy” was such a big hit, other films have been heavy influenced by it. This movie is proof of that. For example, “Thor: Ragnorok” is filled with a lot of comedy, fun action scenes, colorful alien worlds and a classic hit song. While this can be distracting at times, it doesn’t hinder the movie’s quality. The story is satisfying and so are the battle scenes.

Like some other Marvel films, sometimes the comedy is good, and sometimes it just isn’t. Some audience members may find the constant jokes in “Thor: Ragnorok” to be annoying, others will find them to be hilarious. In truth, I felt both emotions while watching it.

Marvel has a bad habit of creating mediocre and forgettable villains. Hela isn’t mediocre, but she isn’t that memorable. To her credit, she does cause a lot of destruction. Thor or Asgard will never be the same. It’s worth mentioning that Jeff Goldblum’s villain, Grandmaster, has a few funny scenes.

On a minor note, I wish Idris Elba’s character, Heimdall, and Karl Urban’s, Skurge the Executioner, had bigger roles. Both are talented actors. But then again, their parts in the movie served the story well enough.

Like other Marvel films, there are a few unanswered questions. For instance, where was Lady Sif, played by Jaime Alexander? She was Thor’s warrior love interest, and constantly fights in the name of Asgard. Yet in the movie where Asgard is invaded, she is nowhere to be seen. Thor’s other love interest, Jane Foster, played Natalie Portman, doesn’t appear either.

For 2017, Marvel appears to be on a winning streak with their most recent installments. They appear to be unable to do any wrong. Of course, that’s not completely true. Like I said, the first two Thor movies aren’t that good, and I still want a refund for those “Iron Man” sequels.

“Thor: Ragnorok” is a good movie, and a worthy entry in the franchise. However, it’s not one of the best. If I made a top five list for the MCU, “Thor: Ragnorok” wouldn’t be on the list, though it would be an honorable mention.

If you’re a fan of the other Marvel films, you’ll like this latest addition. If you’re a movie goer that’s looking for something more intelligent, odds are you might not appreciate this film that much. Personally, I enjoyed it, and I look forward to the next Marvel film.


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