The son of Odin is back once again to grace us with his almighty presence; but with a very different tone and feel this time around. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) has been crossing the nine realms since the events of Sokovia in Avengers: Age of Ultron, in search of some much needed answers and the illustrations infinity stones. But what he uncovers instead is Ragnarok, the end of days and with it, the vicious Hela, who is hell bent on releasing her wrath upon Asgard.
This film is simply brilliant, moving away from its Shakespearean roots that were shown in the first two, and into a more flamboyant side of Thor that we haven’t seen the full potential of. Hemsworth’s comedic presence is delightful, not overplaying to accommodate it for the necessity of the movie, being serious and powerful when needed. Tom Hiddleston’s sinister Loki is nice to see again, playing the character as wonderfully as ever. Cate Blanchett is wicked as Hela, adhering to the high consistency of imposing MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) villains. Mark Ruffalo gives another great performance as The Hulk, adding dimension after dimension to his beloved scientist smasher. The new introduction of Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, Jeff Goldblum as The Grandmaster and Karl Urban as Skurge are brilliant, along with supporting roles from Idris Elba as Heimdall and Sir Anthony Hopkins as Odin.
Director Taika Waititi has done a superb job in creating this film. The story is excellent, adding yet another evolution to the beloved characters of the MCU, despite being almost 10 years down the line. The balance of playful banter between the two Avengers (Thor & Hulk) and the heartfelt emotion that underpins the arc of the story is something that Marvel have definitely mastered. It sets both the characters and plot up nicely for what’s about to come in upcoming films. The change in direction from Waititi was much need for the Thor franchise, as the second film didn’t do the God of Thunder much justice.
The cinematography is nice and colourful, drawing audiences into all aspects of the screen. The new exploration and backdrop of Sakaar provides the platform for the movie to blossom its humour. The cameo appearances (don’t worry, no spoilers, I promise!) personify how much fun and freedom went into to making this movie. My only little niggle is that, while it was refreshing to see a change of pace for Thor, some powerful dialogue to make for a stronger script would have been welcomed in my opinion. When it mattered, I feel it would have solidified the message it was conveying.
Thor: Ragnarok is a great film. The faith shown in cast and crew to take the franchise into a new direction really payed off, and immediate responses from critics have it ranked amongst the best the MCU has to offer. As a fan of Marvel’s films, I loved it, and will definitely see it again and again. But only time will tell for fans as to where it ranks in their all time favourites. So, what’s next for the MCU? Black Panther will be released in February 2018. After seeing sublime snippets of him in Civil War, and a great looking trailer, this is one film you should be very excited for. Then, the long awaited and highly anticipated Avengers: Infinity War, where we will see a culmination of the events that have transpired over the last decade.
Thor: Ragnarok is in theatres across the country now.