Thor isn’t the best Marvel movie of the bunch, but it knows exactly what it is and enjoys playing in this bright playground of Gods. Director Kenneth Branagh is having a good time with the fantasy aspects as well as the Shakespeare stuff involving the royal family of Asgard. Thor is a bright and sometimes witty movie that also furthers the overall Marvel Movie storyline. When Thor gets it right, the movie is very entertaining.
The Gods (or Aliens) from Asgard have been the gatekeepers of the universe to protect all the worlds from an invasion from the Frost Giants of Jotunheim. The powerful Odin keeps the Frost Giants at bay with his mighty power. However, Odin is losing power as he grows older. The arrogant Thor, one of Odin’s sons, is about to take his father’s place as ruler of the kingdom, when an attack happens within the depths of the Kingdom. After a series of events, Thor finds himself banished from the Kingdom and marooned on Earth. Thor must figure out how to get back to his homeland and save Earth in the process.
To put it simply, Chris Hemsworth is Thor. He has the swagger of a god and a warrior in the very first scene he’s in. Hemsworth actually makes Thor an arrogant, but a charming character early on. Sure Thor is looking for a fight and goes about things in the wrong manner, but he actually has reasons for going into battle with a tiny team of comrades. Hemsworth is even better as he marches around the Earth realm demanding more beer and ordering people around. He bellows every word out and laughs loudly.
I also like the appearance of Thor in this Marvel Movie Universe compared to the main comic universe version. Actually, this movie Thor looks like a cross between the Ultimate Universe Thor and the main version. He’s big and tall, but not that lumbering as some artists draw him. He’s believable.
While the chemistry between Natalie Portman and Hemsworth seems forced and stilted, I had no problem with believing in Portman’s performance as a scientist. Portman has proven over and over again that she is a good actress even when the roles aren’t completely fleshed out. I hope she shows up for another movie.
Tom Hiddleston is brilliant as the main bad guy. While I am still not certain exactly what were his full motives in the movie, I liked the villain of Loki.
Most of the fun of the movie happens with the magical planets outside the Earth realm. All of the Asgards scenes are bright and lively. I really dug what they did with those scenes. Plus, most of the action scenes within the other realms are just amazing.
The biggest problems with the movie are the script issues. The script needed a bit of punch up when it came to the Earth stuff. The transitions between the worlds weren’t even enough. While I liked seeing Thor interact with our world, but there needed to be more.
All the interconnecting with the rest of the Marvel Movie Universe is fine and better suited here than in Iron Man 2, and I could have more of it.
Thor is certainly far from being prefect, but it is certainly a fun movie that truly brings the God of Thunder to life. The Shakespeare performances are top notch and bring the otherwise weaker script to a higher level. This is one of the better films of summer.
Bring on the Avengers.
Agent Coulson returns in an extended role this time. I always enjoyed seeing his character in the Marvel movies. He ties the movies together with Sam Jackson.