Jean-Paul’s Rating: 4/5 stars
Bottom Line: Doesn’t take itself seriously. More of a series of buddy comedies than a movie. Lots of fun.
“Thor: Ragnarok” is best thought of as a series of buddy comedies in which Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and an ever-changing buddy find themselves in and get themselves out of amusing situations through hijinks and shenanigans. Or maybe it’s actually a Dungeons and Dragons game with a series of quests eventually leading to the boss fight at the end? Hmmm… Either way, it’s a lot of fun!
This is a wonderfully entertaining movie filled with tons of characters across vast expanses of the multiverse. It can be a lot to take in, but it is grounded by some pretty fantastic comedic acting pretty much across the board, anchored solidly by Chris Hemsworth. Jeff Goldblum ties much of the story together playing Jeff Goldblum, er, Grandmaster. Even the director, Taika Waititi (yes, that’s really his name!), gets into the mix as computer generated bit character Korg.
As has become rote with Marvel movies, the main villain is played by an awesome actor who is completely underutilized and mostly one-dimensional. In this case, it’s Cate Blanchett as Hela. In the Marvel retelling, Hela is the sister of Thor, while in Norse mythology, she’s actually Hel and the daughter of Loki. Why they decided to change this bit of mythology is beyond me. The stuff they could have done with Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and Hela could have been epic. But nope, once again, they just wanted a disposable villain. Can’t blame them, as the formula has been proven to work, but man do I long for another Loki.
Every Thor movie that has come out has been better than the last. With “Thor: Ragnarok” being the third Thor movie, I think I can safely say that it is now the best standalone hero franchise in the Marvel universe, surpassing Ironman which started strong but has been weak. A lot of people dissed the first Thor movie, but I enjoyed its campiness which was very new at the time for a Marvel movie. It would be interesting to re-watch it and see if that holds up.