I have been a Thor movie fan since the first Thor film, I wasn’t one who bashed Thor and how it was a weak entry in the MCU as many others did. I enjoyed the first movie and thought it had the right mix of action, love story, humor, and comic book elements to make it an enjoyable movie. Thor tied in well with the existing MCU at the time and helped with the expansion of the SHIELD storyline which was important in the beginning of the MCU.
I also enjoyed Thor: The Dark World and again, it actually has some implications that moved the whole overarching MCU storyline forward with the introduction of the aether as another Infinity Stone. The cast from the first movie was back together with some new additions and it had a good mix or humor, love, and action.
So bring on Thor 3 – Thor: Ragnarok! Right?!
THOR: RAGNAROK SPOILERS BELOW:
Well, despite the early 98% Rotten Tomatoes score (currently sitting at a 93% critic review and 90% audience reviews) and gushing reviews of “the best comedy movie from Marvel“, “Might leave you ‘Thor’ from laughter“, “The best, silly superhero yet – it is thunderful!“, “Thor is basically a blast!“, blah, blah, blah; I didn’t find Ragnarok as enjoyable as the first two Thor movies. Overall, I enjoyed Ragnarok and felt it had some great moments and introduced some great new characters – Kurg (voiced by the director, Taika Waititi) and Valkyrie, as well as the inclusion of Doctor Strange (however, that was more eye candy than anything), the addition of these great new characters was refreshing to the overall Thor storyline. The new director, Taika Waititi, also brought a new vision to the MCU that is appreciated by Random Angst.
I wasn’t very impressed with the action in Ragnarok, as outside of the Thor/Hulk gladiator sequence, all other action sequences were unimaginative and unmemorable. While the introduction of the long lost sister Hela is a great idea, I felt that she was underused and in the end she has gone the way of most other MCU villians (dead after one movie and therefore, not very powerful – or interesting). The most used and interesting MCU villian (at least up until this movie), Loki, also made an appearance in Ragnarok. However, at what point do we stop calling Loki a villian? Loki is always defeated, Thor (and the audience) knows his tricks well enough to the point that he isn’t a threat, and Thor won’t kill him (even though Loki has threatened and destroyed just as many beings as Malekith the Dark Elf, and Hela, who have both been killed off), and he has become less intimidating with each movie he has appeared in.
It’s interesting that with as many villians as Ragnarok has, I never felt that Thor was in jeopardy. Throughout the film, we are introduced to Surtur, Hela, Grandmaster, Hulk, and Loki all of whom tried to thwart, kill, or destroy Thor during the story. With this many characters trying to take out Thor, one would think that there would be large amounts of tension and conflict. For me, I didn’t get that because of the comedic beats and jokes that were prevalent throughout the movie and I think that this is a big part of the problem that I believe this film has. Again, as with the rest of the MCU, the fate of the world, universe, and our heroes lives are at stake but you wouldn’t know it as everyone is too busy cracking jokes and therefore alleviating any angst or sense of danger that would arise with our heroes being put into these dangerous situations. With a title of Ragnarok, which is the Asgardian apocalypse, I never felt a sense of urgency or that the fate of the world was at stake due to an impending doom. Which is ironic, because as we see at the end of the film Asgard as a world, nation, and people is what’s at stake and in danger of being destroyed. However, the being that allows Asgard to eventually be destroyed isn’t one of these villians – it’s Thor, the protector of Asgard, himself.
While there were a lot of average things about Thor: Ragnarok, something I enjoyed a lot was how this movie has expanded the Thor part of the MCU. I feel that in expanding the character lineup and spending time on other world’s besides Earth or Asgard, that the Thor movies and the MCU as a whole are better off. Outside of that though, there were a lot of average things about Ragnarok that dragged down the film as a whole. The most common element from the critic reviews was that it was hilarious, lots of laughs, and the funniest MCU movie yet. For me, this movie was average at best – average action, average humor, and an average storyline. I give it a C, a 7 out of 10, or a 3.5 out of 5 – take your pick.
*One thing this movie needed more of? Natalie Portman. It’s interesting how this is the least interesting Thor movie, and it’s the only movie without Jane Foster.