Reviews: Thor The Dark World
As different as Asgard and Earth
Holy crud! When did Thor become such a good franchise? This film is taking a close run at The Avengers for the best Marvel movie so far. And the change from Thor 1 is awe-inspiring. Thor was a by the numbers Lion Kingesque fish-out-of-water story. Thor: The Dark World is at times epic fantasy, buddy film (yes, with Thor and Loki. Why haven't you seen this film yet?), a heist plot, sci-fi invasion etc And it still has time to give a really deep look into the soul of their characters. Loki is, as ever, the best thing in the film and everything they do with him, from breaking him down to his familial relations is incredible. There are so many things going on under every word he says and every move he makes. But even more than that, Thor himself is no longer entirely forgettable and Jane becomes a proactive figure with brains and drive. This film is good enough, that it actually makes the first film better. Because Thor has so much personality and development here, it makes the original film an example of a younger Thor still finding his place and growing into the person he becomes. His inability to solve any problem the first time around without hitting it with his hammer becomes endearing now that we see he can do so much more. Jane is less of a terrible role-model once we see what she can do when she needs things to be done. Even Thor's Band Of Entirely Superfluous Sidekicks becomes less of a waste of space now that they've got time to breathe and achieve something (a little bit). There are so many beautiful moments in this film. The armour no longer looks cheap and plastic, there are artfully crafted shots of Asgard and the increased focus makes it look like a place where I want to find out more and brings a direly needed sense of wonder with it. But there are also so many awesome moments here, and not just in the spectacle, which if anything was less interesting than all the perfect pieces of character display. A look shared between Loki and Thor, a joke, a smile, a hero ready to step it up and throw himself into destruction for his worlds and his people. And yet would you believe that the film does all this and yet still has space for one of the finest arrays of side roles in a modern blockbuster? Darcy, Richard, Ian, Selivg, Heimdall, Frigga... It just goes to show, there's always a chance to change
A good film the first time around.
When watching Thor 2 for the first time, I honestly enjoyed it. Most the time was spent laughing or crying, simply choosing to enjoy the films rather loose plot. But after watching it a second time? I was kind of disappointed to be honest. I'd heard many things about the film before, with it being 'amazing' and 'a must watch!' but the actual plot was very underdeveloped. It orientated around the relationships of the characters, such as Thor and Loki, Thor and Jane, Frigga and Odin, and so forth and so on. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing, but I found it took over the actual plot of the movie, which was the villain Malekith. He had an extremely short screen time despite being the main antagonist and scenes surrounding him didn't have much depth to them or motive. If anything, it seemed to focus on Loki, which although I was completely fine with, isn't the point. And then we come to Jane - Her part in the movie was quite simple. She was reunited with her long lost love Thor after falling deep in love after a few days despite the fact that Thor will probably live for thousands of years, and they all lived happily ever after. This kind of links me to the ending, **SPOILER** In which Loki is impersonating Odin. We don't actually know what happened to Odin, if he's dead or alive, but the conversation between him and Thor I found included information private to the All Father and Thor. Not once has Loki been mentioned to have mind reading powers with the exception of using the Tesseract. So my overall opinion on the film is that if you like a good film if you enjoy humour, sarcasm, a carefree plot and above all, Tom Hiddleston, then this is the film for you. Otherwise though, it tends to deviate from the original plot and seems to speed through important areas such as the interactions between the Warriors Three and Darcy and her intern! I would, however, recommend it to others since it is a brilliant film, with good filming and special effects.
Enjoyable, depending on how much you mind the flaws
The first thing I want to say is that I did find the film enjoyable when I watched it, despite its flaws. I would even watch it again, with a friend who has not seen it. The visuals are creatively done and the film looks very nice, even though 3D will add NOTHING because it is not true 3D (filmed with 2 cameras) but the cheap converted kind. So, if you can, watch it in 2D. The most important flaw is the story telling and some gaping plot holes. If you go see this, be aware that the story telling is clumsy at times and even though many topics are introduced, few of them are actually given time for a satisfying resolve. The second major flaw I found to be distracting were the transitions. They were done very badly and even took me out of the film sometimes. Then, there is the romance. I understood from the first film, that Thor and Jane liked each other and fell in lust maybe, but they had known each other for what? 3 days? Now we are supposed to believe they are deeply in love, without anything to show us why. The relationship between Thor and Jane is a major focus of the film, so I am disappointed they wouldn't give it more time to develop. Or more Loki. Seriously, for his prominence in the trailer(s) his scene count is rather slim. The motives of our villain are NEVER elaborated upon. Seriously, all we know is that he wants to regain the Aether and bring darkness to the universe, without even telling us what that means, exactly. Are all the suns suddenly snuffed out, or what? Why does he want this? I assumed it was a metaphor for wiping out all other life, but it's NEVER EXPLAINED! If you enjoy watching Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman and Tom Hiddleston without caring too much about the plot, if you enjoy creative visuals, a snarky Loki and some funny lines, go watch it. If not, you may be disappointed. And by the way - the tag line to this film? Total bullshit. "He is forced to sacrifice everything to save us all." Thor sacrifices exactly nothing in this film. SPOILER WARNING! During the battle in Vanaheim, they actually used guns. They have firearms and Asgard is STILL using melée weapons? Later in the film it is shown that Asgard also has artillery, which is NEVER explained. Seriously, what the fuck?! Also, why can MEASUREMENT instruments be used to TELEPORT? How? The ending with Loki as Odin was fucking awesome, though.
Good but a little lacking
I've been mulling over Thor: The Dark World since we saw it. I would certainly say it's worth seeing if you were a fan of any of the previous Avengers-verse Marvel movies...it ties together both The Avengers and the first Thor, and takes things in directions both predictable and anything but. The effects are good; there are some subtlly neat character interactions and actions; the humor is well-used, especially any time Loki's on-screen; and the climax is another of the satisfyingly good romps that these movies have provided so far. The 3D is good but not necessary. That, however, brings me to my three biggest gripes. The first is that Malekith, for all his starey menace (and once I realized that the guy who played the Ninth Doctor played him, that made that aspect even better), just isn't that interesting of a villain, especially in comparison to Loki in the aforementioned films. The best moments of the film are when he's not on-screen and the focus is on the drama between Thor, Loki, their parents, and Jane. The second is that the Thor/Sif/Jane tension that was hinted at in the trailers is barely explored, although I suppose if/when there's a third film it could factor in more. The last is more of a whine than anything. I really missed the quasi-Shakespearean feel that Kenneth Branagh's direction brought to the first Thor...not that this director is bad (he does Game of Thrones, after all) but it's just not the same. The first stinger felt clumsy but made me even more interested in future plot developments in this verse, especially in light of what was revealed in the first stinger in The Avengers. The second was just amusing.
Succeeds on Snarkery
This is not a good action movie. The Big Bad is boring, The Hero does something stupid (again! although admittedly it was more thought out and done with good intentions), and the plot is contrived. Chris Hemsworth makes for a very convincing Action Hero and Natalie Portman an Adorkable and actually useful Love Interest, but not to the point that they can carry a movie. But that doesn't mean it's unwatchable. Remember, I said it is not a good ACTION movie. You see, Thor: The Dark World is a comedy. Yes, seriously, a movie about a big muscly guy swinging a hammer at baddies with the fate of the known universe at stake is actually a comedy; don't be fooled, it's just masquerading as an action movie. And now for the REAL stars of the show, Tom Hiddleston and Kat Dennings (I would list one more, but I prefer not to put spoilers in reviews)! These two are the actual reason for watching the movie, delivering one-liner after one-liner and breathing humorous life into what might have been a plodding.....non-comedy. Many of Hiddleston's scenes made myself and the rest of the audience LOL. (It is a shame that Hiddleston and Dennings don't share any scenes together, I'd actually pay money to see that.) The writers also throw a few one-liners to Chris Hemsworth and Alexander Skarsgard as well. And the climax of the film was great, I actually LOL the entire time through watching the
climactic battle.....er, I mean, end-of-movie gags...funniest I've seen in a long time.