Thor: Ragnarok Movie Review
I was a bit concerned that Thor: Ragnarok would have too much ground to cover to the point that it'd be rushed. I was happily proven wrong. The film's laughs were natural and not overstuffed or forced which was a huge relief. In fact, there's only a few tiny issues I had with the film.
Thor: Ragnarok follows Thor as he searches for his father Odin and prepares to face his biggest challenge yet - attempting to stop Ragnarok, the end of all things. Hela, the goddess of death, has risen to power and is dead-set on the destruction of Asgard.
First, let me get the big question out of the way. How big of a part does Doctor Strange play in the story? Well, I can tell you that it's both big and small at the same time. He's basically there to show off his skills and push Thor on his way. So yes Strange did point Thor in the right direction but at the same time this whole scene felt entirely unnecessary. Strange was being an ass just to be an ass and isn't that what he was attempting to stop doing throughout his solo film? Strange's appearance felt very much like Iron Man 2 in the sense that throughout the first film the main character starts out as egotistical and arrogant but after the intense blows to his ego, he tries to right his wrongs and spent the rest of the film growing and becoming a changed person. Then in the sequel he's back to his egotistical arrogant ways. It just annoyed me that it seemed like Strange hadn't really changed, just became more powerful.
The next issue I had was the absence of a major character in Thor's universe. We saw the Warriors Three but where was Sif? There was absolutely no explanation where she'd gone and why she didn't return to help save Asgard. I guess Hela was in Sif's "blindspot". Get it? Because Sif actress Jamie Alexander is in a show called Blindspot? Never mind.
The final issue I had was how Hela was spectacularly built up throughout the film but then in the final moments she was no better than any other villain in the MCU. She had her army of the undead do all the work while she watched. That's such a shame too because we saw how incredibly powerful she was. She was skilled, quick, and brilliantly ruthless. And then the ending happened.
Let's switch gears and look at the positives. Writers Eric Pearson, Craig Kyle, and Christopher Yost weren't afraid to go all out and push the line between silly and ridiculous. It certainly paid off in the end and director Taika Waititi translated it to the screen brilliantly.
I also loved how each character's powers were explored further throughout the film Thor grew not only as a person but as a god and reached a whole new level of manly badassery. Hela for the most part was outstanding and is probably my second favorite villain in the entire MCU. Cate Blanchett was remarkable and really brought the villain to life perfectly.
In conclusion, Thor: Ragnarok had only a handful of issues but mostly succeeds and sets up Thor's role in Infinity War. The setup was very much a "blink-and-you'll-miss-it" moment but it is there. We'll see what Marvel does with Black Panther and then the highly anticipated Infinity War follows that. Next year will be a huge year for Marvel as the MCU celebrates its 10-year anniversary. I give Thor: Ragnarok a 3.5 out of 4.
© 2017 Alec Zander