Thor – The Dark World

Despite some of the shortcomings I list below, I like this film and would recommend seeing it in the theater to draw your own conclusions about it. My buddy Paul is a wealth of comic book knowledge (far beyond my own) and he really liked it without being as nitpicky as I am about it, but I still like the first Thor movie better…

Let’s start with the positives. The story is cool as the main conflict in the story comes from a chapter of Asgard’s past with the re-emergence of an old enemy that has awoken after the trigger of a power locked away long ago. Present day Asgard finds Odin having to set up defenses in very trying circumstances against a foe determined to snuff out the light of the universe and the life of its inhabitants.

Thor is of course at the center of everything as his love interest (Natalie Portman) finds herself involved when she comes in contact with the locked-away power I mentioned previously.

The effects look great (although I thought the rock creature in the beginning looked a little CG). Otherwise, it’s pretty great to see this on the big screen since much of the movie takes place on Asgard. The alien forces doing battle is also fun to watch as the design of their weapons and battles is a combination of an old knights vibe with new technologies.

So overall, yeah, good stuff.

However – it fell short a bit in some of the acting performances as well as the directing, I was really missing Kenneth Branagh’s involvement. Branagh did a much better job paying attention to the little things that were a bit out of wack this time around. Example – Thor mysteriously figures out how to pilot an ancient flying vehicle he’s never seen before and oh yeah, he’s not a pilot since he can fly anyway. Yet, he flies this vehicle with an amazing dexterity unrivaled by the other pilots trying to shoot him down. Hmmm…

Some of the performances felt a little phoned in too. As much as I hate to say this, Anthony Hopkin’s delivery feels like he’s just there collecting a paycheck. Chris Hemsworth as Thor turns in a “meh” performance as well when he could’ve been more passionate. Tom Hiddleston as Loki is consistently good from his other performances in the role. Natalie Portman is her usually Natalie Portman self, no surprises there. Rene Russo and Kat Dennings are featured as well.

As usual, never leave a Marvel film before the end credits finish! There are not one, but 2 teasers in here!

reviewed by Sean McKnight