by: The HORROR Man
Get ready for the ultimate fan boy review.
Thor is a character near and dear to this fan’s heart. I grew up reading The Mighty Thor and Journey Into Mystery from Marvel Comics on a weekly basis. So needless to say, when word came down that a film was in production about the god of thunder, this fan was up in arms. Yet, as I watched and listened, my senses were ablaze and I was pleasantly surprised.
Thor begins with Sir Anthony Hopkins giving a very well-versed narration of the history of Asgard and their neighbors, The Frost Giants. The Frost Giants are the main antagonist in this flick, or that’s what they want you to believe. We see young Thor and his brother Loki (portrayed as adults by Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston, respectively) being counseled by their father Odin (Hopkins). Right from the get-go you can tell something is amiss about the young Loki. As Jane Foster (Portman) is introduced, it’s very obvious that she was chosen more for her sexuality and star power than her acting ability. Jane Foster is supposed to be smart and well-balanced, with a slight edge. Portman convinces us only half the time with her portrayal, but keeps her dignity and doesn’t go full slut when Thor arrives on Earth. Darcy (Kat Dennings) is clearly the comedy relief in the film and could have been played by any young starlet in Hollywood. Yet she does add a quality to the film that is needed – a laugh track.
Fast-forward, and now it’s time for Thor to be given the title of king. Some will complain due to the fact Thor’s helmet is barely in the film, but hey, we can’t always get what we want.
This is where the movie turns on its head and becomes a fast-paced action flick. The introduction of the warriors three is pretty slick and you can tell these characters have a great back story. I won’t get into the history of these characters, because that would take another three days to write, but be rest assured, they are skilled warriors and have been battling side by side with Thor for centuries. The story takes another twist and Thor is banished to Earth by Odin to learn humility and wisdom.
Thor may be the main character and the hero, but Thor is just as much about Loki’s origin. Hiddleston does an amazing job of defining Loki without falling into a predictable performance. We are enthralled by what new trickery he will commit next just to be king of Asgard. There is great sadness and regret behind Loki’s eyes in the film and Hiddleston makes you believe every second of it. At no time do we feel that Loki is the moustache-twirling villain, he is more of a sympathetic character, and you honestly understand where he is coming from.
Sadly, the one thing the movie is full of is too many characters. Each one that is introduced could have their own movie. At times, it’s difficult to follow along with who is saying what to whom. I mean, the warriors three alone have hundreds, if not thousands, of stories. It just gets a bit…constrictive to the plot. Truly, this is my only complaint with Thor.
Add to it the many Marvel references and Easter eggs throughout, it’s a joy to watch for a geek like me.
This film has everything a newbie to the mythology that is Thor could want. Even the most hardened comic geek will, if not enjoy, certainly respect, Thor for what it has to offer and the cast that brings it one hundred percent of the time. Go see it for yourself and be the judge. This geek is going to stick his nose in some Thor comics and see where part two might come from.
For more of a layman’s point of view, see my colleague Austin Welch’s review here.