Director: Kenneth Branagh
Reviewed by Matt Adcock
Thor, Odin's Son, through your arrogance and stupidity, you have opened these peaceful realms and innocent lives to the mild devastation of an overly long and fairly pointless superhero flick that lacks the thrills to really put it on the map…
Yes Marvel is busy gearing up for The Avengers next year which will see the ultimate comic book fan geek- out cast of Iron Man, Hulk, Captain America (see him hit the big screen later this summer) and Thor – the Norse god of thunder, amongst others.
"Loki whose been a naughty god"
So lovvie bothering Kenneth Branagh is tasked with directing this big budget ‘origins tale’ which maps out the back story of how Thor comes to earth and falls for cute mortal local girl Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) who just happens to be a renegade astrophysicist. Yes the huge helmeted, even bigger hammer-wielding blonde immortal hunk decides that earth is the place for him to protect based on his feelings for one young lady. Fair enough.
The film’s action bounces back and forth between modern day planet earth and the shiny retro camp realm of the gods – Asgard – which looks like it’s been borrowed from a Flash Gordon remake. Boss of the gods and father to Thor is Anthony Hopkins’ one eyed Odin who is trying to keep peace with the nasty god slaying Frost Giants from the adjacent realm of ‘Jotunheim’. The Frost Giants look like angry giant red eyed Smurfs and serve as rent-a-baddie source of enemies to feel the wrath of Thor’s magical hammer ‘Mjöllnir’.
The action scenes are duly spectacular if a bit soulless and as my son complained afterwards – there just aren’t enough of them but Thor (played to perfection by Chris ‘A Perfect Getaway’ Hemsworth) is good value and very charismatic in the lead role.
Supporting cast action comes from the likes of Stellan ‘Girl With Dragon Tattoo’ Skarsgard as Professor Erik Selvig (who’ll be back in The Avengers), kooky intern Darcy (Kat Dennings) and main bad guy / Thor’s brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston).
"Portman seems to be in every film released this year"
Samuel L Jackson does his regular post-credits scene as Shield’s Nick Fury plus other Avengers references include agents asking if Loki’s destroyer robot is ‘one of Stark’s suits’ and even a quick intro of another Avenger superhero Hawkeye.
If you’re looking for some big stupid super thrills, then Thor delivers just enough to make it worth a look. This probably won’t be anyone’s favourite superhero film but it does keep the momentum building towards Avengers which just might be the best one ever!?
Out of a potential 5 you have to go with a Darkmatters:
(3 - slick superhero fun but no classic)...
Awesomeness ööö – has its moments
Laughs ööö – some quality laughs
Horror öö – nothing very grim
Babes ööö – Portman and Dennings make an eye candy pleasing team
Spiritual Enlightenment öööö – norse god morals run strong