Review: ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ (2017)
Ragnarok delivers a compelling story that elevates the meaning of sibling rivalry.
Ragnarok is an interesting name for the film as director Tiaka Waititi takes this route to further the story of Thor and the gods of Asgard. Many die-hard Thor fans will know exactly what this film will entail as the comics have already explored this story. In Norse mythos, the tale predicts the doom for the gods and the beginning of the end of the world, much like Armageddon.
The entire subplot of the film is mention at the beginning of the film as Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is held captive by Surtur. The firey lord would explain how he would emerge in Asgard to steal the Eternal Flame to see its destruction. However, someone else wanted to lay claim to ruling Asgard for which it was founded on, the Asgardian Goddess of Death, Hela (Cate Blanchett). Throughout the film, we see a weak and lost Thor reuniting with a troublesome Loki (Tom Hiddleston), a fallen warrior Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), and a destructive-chatty Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) to save the kingdom from the coming Ragnarok all without his trusty hammer.
The movie plays around with both plots of the end of Asgard and a comedy side that it’s one of Marvel’s better films to-date. Ragnarok takes Hela in the role to build Asgard for what it used to be while throwing Thir in a sideshow of escapee on the planet Sakaar—a wasteland of a planet at the end of the universe ran by a sort-of weirdo calling himself Grandmaster, played by the witty Jeff Goldblum.
Despite the film being overwhelmingly great, this part of the film is where Waititi shines with the pratfalls and snarky writing. Adding a few comedy aspects to Thor without turning him into a total joke was perfect as we got a bit of it during Hemsworth’s role in ‘Ghostbusters’. Tessa Thompson’s version of Valkyrie is purely badass. Thompson enters the film when Thor is about to be captured (AGAIN) by scavengers ready to eat him. In an impactful introduction, she claims that Thor is hers while falling off the landing ramp, drunk out of her mind. Each time Thompson is on screen she makes her role even more memorable than the last. However, all this comedy causes this portion of the film to feel a bit longer than expected. For example, Hulk’s gags and arguing, although surreal, felt long with little pay off and mundane. Although the human side of Hulk is comforting to know that a brute can be tamed when necessary. Speaking of tamed and necessary, Cate Blancett’s Hela provides a balance of serious/silly as she portrays Hela in the light of you may take me for a lightweight but you’ll be sorry if you do. Blanchett fits the role perfectly as you can see her become Hela in the real world, love it.
This is the first Marvel movie director that uses every character to their advantage to further the story. Be it me-Hulk, the strange Grandmaster and his bodyguard Topaz, or the soft-spoken man of stone, Korg the Kronan (played by Waititi) they all served their purpose well.
Another aspect that makes this film a great one is the Guardians of the Galaxy ’70s-inspired soundtrack. Especially during the intense action sequences that seem designed to match your heartbeat, you will definitely keep your feet tapping. Waititi has taken a franchise that didn’t see any future after ‘The Dark World’ and revived it with some magical moments that many Thor fans will enjoy.