“Thor: Ragnarok” Review: The Strongest Avenger

Third times a charm for the Marvel Cinematic Universes underdog, Thor. Say what you will about the first two Thor films, but let’s be honest, they’re painfully forgettable. Chris Hemsworth always brought his charming likability and phenomenal screen presence, but the material in his standalone features just didn’t pack that MCU “punch” we’ve grown to love over the past decade. It’s a shame to, because not only is Hemsworth fantastic as the title character, but the Thor mythology umpteen characters of the nine realms is utterly fascinating. Thank the gods for Taika Waititi, for exploring these worlds in a fun, stylistic, and truly memorable way.

Thor: Ragnarok is set what is assumed around the same time of the events of Civil War. The film opens up with Thor captured, chained up by the demonic fire demon, Surtur. What we think is a simple narration by the title character, Thor is actually telling his tale to a skeleton, who’s been held captive in Surtur’s chambers for, well, a long time.

“Wait a second, you’re trying to tell me that Thor is actually funny in this movie?”

Yes, inner monologue, I shit you not.

Let’s get this straight, Thor: Ragnarok is not only the most fun you’ll ever have watching a Marvel movie (which is high praise), it’s also the funniest. After 17 decent-lengdry movies, the MCU needed to do something different and have it work. Well, at least for Thor: Ragnarok, it did.

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What the MCU has done consistently great is humanizing these larger than life super powered beings, making for a bevy of terrific characters across the board. Now that we are well beyond that stage, at least with the “phase 1” characters, it’s about time to spice things up, and what ends up happening is that Thor Ragnarok is the first “comedy” in the MCU, and is without question the best superhero movie of the year (minus Logan, but I mean, apples and oranges, folks).

Hemsworth has never been better as Thor, adding an entirely new level of personality to the character, while still maintaining true to himself. At this point, the man can do the roll sleep, yet in Ragnarok you can’t help but notice how perfect he is as Thor. Hemsworth also has excellent comedic timing and a surprisingly diverse range as an actor.

Both new and returning cast members are wonderful throughout, especially the mustache twirling “Grandmaster,” (Jeff Goldblum) whom deliciously chews up every scene he’s in. Cate Blanchett (though criminally underused) is stellar as the goddess of death, Hela. The MCU is notorious for having weak villains, and while Hela doesn’t necessarily break that cycle, she’s without question one of the most memorable.

Characters such as Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and the now articulate Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) are terrific as always, with Hiddleston’s mischievous Loki stealing every scene he’s in. We finally see a slightly different side of Loki, while still remaining the jealous brother we’ve all come to know throughout the years.

Although it’s always a pleasure to see the Hulk being a big giant rage monster, Bruce Banner gets shamefully put to the side, with Ruffalo having little to do other than shout out one-liners. Thor: Ragnarok has everything a comic book movie should have, while also spinning the genre on its side, solidifying (even more so) than Marvel does in-fact, rule the world.

Grade : 9/10

@Nick_Casaletto

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