Thor: Ragnarok (Review)

Thor: Ragnarok (Review)

I think someone likes Led Zeppelin.

The Thor trilogy might be the weirdest trilogy in the MCU.  Iron Man pretty much stays the same in terms of style but slowly goes downhill in terms of quality.  Captain America jumps up in quality by the second movie and becomes the best trilogy overall.  And here’s Thor with a pretty-good movie, a meh movie and a crazy over the top movie.

The one thing that comes to mind when I watched this movie is that the characters of Thor and Loki have significantly changed from what they were.  I believe that the director – Taika Waititi – wanted them to act like how they are depicted in the actual norse myths.  So Thor is more of a buffoon than you might be used to, quicker to act than to think.

Thor and Loki are also less antagonistic than they were in previous films.  They actually act more like quarreling brothers at times, acting more like they do in the myths.  Loki does a thing that gets out of his control and Thor has to force him to fix it.  Not to say that they don’t act seriously.  They still remember the things they’ve done in the past and this informs how they act towards each other, but you still remember that they are still brothers and they still love each other, even if they don’t want to admit it.

When I saw the logo change for the film, I was worried that they had changed it to make it more like Guardians of the Galaxy.  Well, that was exactly what they did but it was rationalized.  The film is basically the way they merge the Thor world with the Guardians of the Galaxy world.  The Nine Realms have always felt strange and like they might not exist in the same dimension as the rest of the galaxy.  This film basically says that yes, the Nine Realms are just one part of the galaxy.

It’s definitely the funniest Marvel movie, in my opinion.  Funnier even than Guardians of the Galaxy and the laughs just keep coming.  The film is never too serious for too long.  If a serious moment goes on for a few minutes, you know that something funny is going to happen to lighten the mood.  Which is a shame at times because they bring up some interesting ideas and themes that they don’t go anywhere with.  It suffers from a problem most Marvel movies have in that they never stray from the movie being about good vs evil.

Cate Blanchett as Hela the goddess of death is a blast but also suffers from Marvel’s penchant for boring villains.  Her motivations are pretty much the same motivations for Loki; she wants the throne because she was denied it.  That’s about it.  Thankfully, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie is a breath of fresh air, with a backstory and character arc that is interesting and different from others.  I found myself liking every scene she was in, making her in my opinion one of the highlights of the film.

Another highlight is the Hulk.  And when I say Hulk, I mean Hulk.  Bruce Banner is in there for a bit, but its the Hulk that has more to do.  This time around, he actually has a personality and spoken lines of dialogue.  His behavior is like a child that can destroy everything he sees, which is a welcome difference from the other iterations of him.  This time, it feels like the Hulk and Bruce Banner are two separate entities trapped in one body, which is an interesting change.

The film is definitely worthy of all the praise its getting.  It’s funny, it’s epic, it’s heartwarming and it’s just a great, wild ride from start to finish.  It’s never too serious for too long which might be a problem if that’s what you want but most likely, you’re just watching this film to watch Hulk punch Surtr the fire giant in the face.


Ghostbusters (Film Review)

Ghostbusters, directed by Paul Feig and starring Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones and Chris Hemsworth, is a reboot of the classic franchise of the same name.  It features four women who through a series of events, open a business catching ghosts.  And that’s pretty much it.

For a film that inspired so much controversy and hate (the trailer was one of the most disliked videos on youtube), there was nothing in the film itself that I felt was absolutely wrong.  Nothing in this film seemed to justify the hate surrounding it.  Sure, the film is by no means perfect, but it was relatively harmless when compared to other complete travesties.

For all the hate surrounding the fact that the movie stars four women, I was actually watching the movie not for the ghost-busting, but for these women.  I liked watching their antics and found myself laughing.  Which is what a comedy is supposed to do.  I was also surprised that there was no moment in the film where the women are forced to fall apart through the actions of one of the group or an outside force.  Everytime they’re knocked down, they just keep going, which I found refreshing.

The special effects are by far the least attractive part of the film.  Nothing can beat the practical effects of the original.  The overall designs of the ghost were interesting but as I watched, I knew it was nothing more than computer magic.

But despite that, the four leading ladies carry the movie, including Kate McKinnon, who I felt was the surprise star of the film.  She’s crazy and fearless and everything that I can enjoy in a character.

What this movie is is harmless.  Nothing about this film deserves the hatred aimed at it.  Sure, it’s not the greatest movie in the world.  The plot is pretty predictable and safe.  The movie is simply fun and I would recommend it to anyone who has an evening to kill.