Benjamin Maio Mackay
Thor: Ragnarok - 4 Stars
The best Thor film to date, Taika Waititi brings his unique style to the Marvel universe and offers an impressive action-comedy.
Imprisoned, the mighty Thor finds himself in a lethal gladiatorial contest against the Hulk, his former ally. Thor must fight for survival and race against time to prevent the all-powerful Hela from destroying his home and the Asgardian civilization.
Marvel’s Cinematic Universe has dominated the global box-office since 2008, this is the 17th instalment in the franchise. Every film until now has been similar, no matter who the director the film fits the “Marvel Stereotype.” Somehow, against the odds Marvel allowed Taika Waitit to direct the film and bring his style to Thor’s world. It’s a colourful, visually exciting, loud, bombastic and funny result. The music from Mark Mothersbaugh is excellent, perfectly underscoring the film’s unique tone. The whole film has a very 80s tone, which suits the characters brilliantly.
The script is strong, the humour outweighs the drama - Cate Blanchett is criminally sidelined for a great deal of the film, despite being the MCU’s most powerful villain. However, this is easily overlooked as the cast all give stellar performances. Idris Elba finally gets his moment to shine as Heimdall, Tessa Thompson is excellent as Valkyrie and director Taika Waititi is excellent as Korg. Tom Hiddleston again gets a chance to shine as the superbly written Loki - he gets more to do in this franchise than any other actor. Jeff Goldblum is beautifully comic and Mark Ruffalo offers his best Hulk/Banner performance yet. Anthony Hopkins and Benedict Cumberbatch both appear in small roles and are excellent. Chris Hemsworth is good, but probably the weakest in this huge ensemble cast. Karl Urban, Zachary Levi and Tadanobu Asano are also good in supporting roles. Noticeably missing is Jaime Alexander’s Lady Siv, who’s absence is never explained and bothered me throughout the film.
Overall, the best Thor yet, Marvel should let more directors be creative; as the results are excellent!
Review by Benjamin Maio Mackay
Screening courtesy of Walt Disney Entertainment