Another amazing super-hero flick from Marvel Studious kicks off the summer season in “Thor”.  The film stars Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins, and Stellan Skarsgard.  Thor is a Marvel comic book hero, featured mostly in the Avengers, “Earth’s Mightiest Heroes”.   Of course, in what other group would the God of Thunder fit?  Oh, I’m sorry.  Did the whole religion & comics connection blow your mind?  Well, actually, this is something that a lot of people were caught off guard by.  By people, I mean comic book readers.

A quick re-cap might be in order here.  Thor is the Norse God of Thunder and Lightning.  He is the son of Odin, the All-Father, chief of the Norse pantheon of deities.  The Norse Gods live in the divine realm of Asgard, which is connected to Earth by the Bifrost Bridge.  Thor is a pompous, arrogant prince, who is headstrong and stupid.  The comic version of Thor has Thor being banished to Earth (known as Mid-Guard to the Asgardians) because he needs to be humbled before he can take his place as Odin’s successor to the throne of Asgard.

“Thor” is a fantastic blend of fantasy, magic, science, and super-hero comic book material.  Honestly, when Marvel Studios announced that they were tackling the God of Thunder, I was concerned.  It was difficult material in the comics.  It was hard to accept a God as a super hero.  I was always left with the question “If Thor is a God, why doesn’t he just decide to stay in Asgard?”  I mean, if you had access to Heaven, wouldn’t you take it?  Why would you ever leave?  This film actually tackles that question in a very direct manner.  Kudos to Marvel for doing so!

“Thor” also delivers a fantastic representation of one of the most difficult to imagine worlds ever conceived: Asgard according to Marvel comics.  Those who have read the comics can grasp that statement.  The rest of you will have to imagine this: a larger than life world where everything is gorgeous and kind of sci-fi like (and when they say Giant they mean something like 50’ tall).  About 50% of the film takes place in Asgard, which makes sense and would have been a disaster if the studio had not gotten it right.   Marvel got it right, and I for one loved it – from Jotunheim to Heimdall and the Warriors Three.

Hemsworth is fantastic as Thor!  You just could not have asked for a better person to play the part, to look the part.  Hopkins does a fine job as Odin, very believable (unlike Liam Neeson as Zeus in “Clash of the Titans”).  Portman is great as Jane, but honestly I wish they would have chosen someone else.  I only say that because of her star power; it wasn’t necessary for the part and I think it would be nice to offer the fans of this soon-to-be franchise some continuity – because I doubt she will reprise her role as Jane.  I found Hemsworth’s portrayal of Thor to be spot-on and I believed the romance between him and Jane utterly.  That’s important because it becomes a direct connection to the question I mentioned earlier.

For fans of the comic, this film offers you a lot.  You’ll get to see Thor doing what Thor does best, including spinning his hammer, flying, and smashing his hammer on the ground.  Thor has the lingo and the attitude you know from the comic, and Hemsworth just looks the part.  Oh, and he even dons the winged helmet for a scene.  Nice!    Loki is done so perfectly that it deserves a standing ovation.  I mean the acting is wonderful (the ac tor is Tom Hiddleston), the lines given the actor are perfect, the costumes are exactly what they should be, and the special effects concerning his power are what you would want to see.  In a word, Loki was flawless.

This is a fun film that anybody can enjoy, as it has great laughs, some great combat scenes, and just a ton of things that a super hero flick should have.  I HIGHLY recommend “Thor” for a really good time at the movies!

…and that’s it for this edition of THE REEL VOICE.



One thought on “Thor

  1. Good review, totally agree with you on the casting (never fear, the gorgeous Natalie Portman is indeed returning in the sequel which is out at the end of October) – Tom Hiddleston in particular is excellent – he’s even better in Avengers.

    It also helped that J. Michael Straczynski was involved in the story, having written probably the best run in the Thor comics, at least of recent years!

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