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Thor (film)

A 2011 action/fantasy film directed by Kenneth Branagh.

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Thor is pure quality entertainment but has enough flaws to dismiss it as a piece of filmmaking.

  • Jun 7, 2011

Thor (Chris Hemsworth), the God of Thunder, is the son of Odin (Anthony Hopkins), the ruler of the nine realms of the Universe. Thor possesses a hammer that gives him an unmatched power. Odin sees in him a worthy successor to the throne. Wow... what a sharp and weird beginning for this review... Should I?... Nope. Let's continue...

His brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) grows up and develops great envy towards him and finds himself in an ongoing search for a method or reason to make Thor unworthy of being a King. He therefore creates a little spark between one of the most ancient rivalries that existed between his people, the Ansgardians, and the Frost Giants of Jotunheim. Thor is betrayed by his own character: an ignorant and arrogant warrior that sees nothing else on the horizon but revenge or punishment. He decides to travel to Jotunheim with some of his friends and defeat the Frost Giants in the name of his father. We witness a great action scene, we witness the power of Thor but all that gets interrupted by Odin which found out about this heresy and enraged by Thor's childish actions and "douchey" behavior he decides to banish him to Earth forcing him to live between humans as a human. He also sends the hammer to Earth but not before dismantling any connection between Thor and the hammer. Nice turn of things.

Now on Earth, in New Mexico, we get to meet a lovely scientist named Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) which was pretty much obsessed with her work. By trying to analyze and discover the secrets behind some meteorological anomalies she finds herself in the middle of Thor's "teleportation" (banishment) to Earth. From that moment on Thor gets in contact with the human race. He is fragile at the beginning, vulnerable yet still powerful but not in a "magical" way. He becomes a charming character and starts to depart himself from the actual "douche" he was in the first 15 minutes of the film. At one point, Thor finds out about the hammer that fell somewhere near their location from some local citizens who, I don't know how, confused a god damn hammer with a satellite. Either they were stupid or they were stupid. You tell me. In the same time, SHIELD, the secret government organization found out about the strange things that happened and already started to interfere and takeover the place. They "borrowed" Jane's lifetime work and already surrounded the area where the hammer was located. Having nothing to lose, Jane decides to help Thor get to the hammer. Now, Thor was a human. How he succeeded to enter that "secure" area and dispose of all those agents is beyond me but let's say we'll accept it because it's a comic-book/superhero movie. He reaches the hammer tries to lift it but fails. He gets captured, interrogated and even get a close conversation with his brother Loki which, surprise-surprise, tells him Odin is dead and that he is the new king of Asgard. In that time, Loki found out a big secret that Odin kept hidden for years. He models a plan that will make him look like the savior of Asgard and conspires with King Laufey of Jotunheim. With all this, we get a glimpse at a very interesting character named Heimdall (Idris Elba) which is a gate-keeper or gate-protector. This character is such a stand-out presence and it's a real shame they didn't gave him more minutes on the screen.

Behind to our story though, Thor tries to redeem himself and actually grows up while staying on Earth thanks to the relationship developed between him and Jane. We get another piece of action on earth due to Loki's rage and desire to kill Thor once he realizes his brother found out the truth. The problem with the second action scene is that it is a big step down from the first one which breaks a rule that exists since beginning of cinema. You always build anticipation through the movie by upgrading fight by fight till the last epic one. This is not the case here. We also get a reference on Tony Stark and this is where I stood like "Okay... so... what's the point?". I'll tell you why. Stark had every bit of information about ANYTHING wrong or weird that might happen on earth. We get these strange weather anomalies, we get this immovable hammer in the middle of the desert, we get a fight scene, we get pretty much big attention for at least two days in that area and all we get about Stark is a REFERENCE? Oh really? So where was Stark in these incredible moments? Everyone was there besides him... Where he was? C*cktail party? Drunk on the sofa? Drugged? He thought it was all some joke? Let's be realistic for a moment. If they want to intersect these movies and these superheroes than why just mention Stark when we already know in cases like he would have been THERE. Besides this error of logic, we get a lot of funny moments and tricky little jokes thrown in but we still can't make a real connection between Earth and Asgard since the story on Earth feels so undeveloped and unimportant. The difference between these two "narrative realms" is pretty big and that harms this movie. However, somehow, we get to the final act where Thor gets back to Asgard and defeats Loki easily which gets left struggling through the infinite space. Thor becomes King of Asgard and we're left with a small teaser for the Avengers. That's pretty interesting but you guys missed the point. You missed the point where I hurried up my review exactly when I should have talked about the last act of the film... Yep! It was rushed. The last fight felt so easy for Thor it all became pointless to me and all I can understand about this movie is one thing: this was a teaser to the Avengers and an introduction for the villain. The Thor story was barely mediocre. The same old search for redemption and maturity... We are tired of that.

Anyway, the great aspect about this film is that besides Hopkins's delivery as Odin and Hiddleston's portrayal of Loki, Chris Hemsworth actually carried his character. He made it memorable and alive. I honestly loved Chris in this even in the small romantic scenes with Natalie which was to me not credible as a scientist. She didn't played well the scientist part she just played the shy and sweet Natalie we already know. And her friend? Darcy (Kat Dennings)? What the hell was that? She had few jokes from which two were more than atrocious and so clicheic and served no point to the story at all. She is the definition of a movie filler. God she was annoying at times...

Technically the movie sits pretty well. The 3D was messed up in most of the scenes, depth of field being the major problem but the travel-through-spaces sequences were gorgeous. The visual effects were impressive, the costumes were better than I expected but Asgard looked so... "plastic" at times. It just didn't look convincing. It was surreal but not convincing. There were also some problems with the contrast and the chosen angles for some fight scenes but overall it was decent enough but definitely it could have looked much much better. The music served well the movie's identity but I saw no point in getting melodramatic at the end... It's a Thor movie for Odin's sake.

Overall, Thor is pure quality entertainment but has enough flaws to dismiss it as a piece of filmmaking. It's not well structured, the characters are not all balanced, the fight scenes are not getting better but simpler and pointless, the technical minuses exist and the story is fragile for a Thor movie. Ultimately, as a comic-book/superhero film... it is there amongst the decent movies in the same genre of the last decade but as an overall film... it feels flat.

Storyline/Dialogue: 7/10.
Acting: 7,5/10.
Technical Execution: 7.7/10.
Replay Value: 6,5/10.
Overall: 7,2

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June 07, 2011
Great breakdown and I liked the way you dissected the film. This was alright, better than mediocre and yet so short in becoming great. I still see this as a baby step towards the definitive Thor Movie. Thanks for the write up, Julian!
June 07, 2011
June 07, 2011
I have featured this in our MH community....
June 08, 2011
The problem is I'm too busy to make real in-depth reviews... I just talk about the things that I consider they deserve to be mentioned... I don't put too much accent on the narration as you can see... It's more of a free-will review. When I'll have more time I'll be happy to elaborate more and give some real in-depth analysis on some movies...
June 08, 2011
No problem,. you know we encourage free-will reviews in Movie Hype! No opnion is unwelcome and we want everyone to feel at home. I like your reviews as they are, but write them however you'd like. :)
June 08, 2011
Nice Review. I think you did a fantastic job. I really did not care for the film myself. I didn't find it particularly memorable. I thought the plot lacked alot and that the dialogue was just horrible. I think they should have given someone in the movie something intelligent and non-predictable to say. It is extremely far from being a great movie. I think the hype is what drew most people in to see it to begin with. I expected so much more from Branaugh. I have heard that they will make a sequel to this. Unfortunately, because people liked this one, or merely needed something to just see. Marvel won't change very much for the next one. That is usually what happens.
More Thor (2011 movie) reviews
review by . May 06, 2011
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Whosoever Holds This Hammer If He Be Worthy, Shall Possess The Power of Thor!!
Those who follow my blurbs and/or write ups know that I have recently posted a sort of ‘guide’ to Thor since I think it is safe to assume that not that many folks have knowledge of the character and who he is. The character isn’t as widely popular as “Superman” or as familiar as Spider-Man. Well, after almost 50 years, the Marvel character known as “Thor” is finally being unleashed as a massive mainstream movie. When I heard that the first intended director …
review by . May 05, 2011
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review by . May 06, 2012
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review by . May 07, 2011
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Most people would recognize Kenneth Branagh as one of top Shakespearean actors or more recently for his role as Professor Lockhart.  His is a brilliant actor in just about everything he does (even though sometimes over acted), and although this is not his first stab at directing it is his first take at a film of such "epic" proportions. I will however be completely honest with you, if you attempt to go see Thor in 3D you are wasting your money.  There is NOTHING 3D about this …
review by . October 09, 2011
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**1/2 out of ****     Explosions, special effects, a sense of humor, and enthusiastic, dedicated leads. I'm getting tired of superhero movies; as 2011 seems to be a pretty big year for them, albeit a very mediocre one. You've got your good superhero movies and then you've got the ones that lack depth of importance. Chances are, I will forget most of the superhero movies I've seen including the ones that I simply liked. The ones that I loved shall get a much more appropriate treatment. …
review by . June 01, 2011
Call Down Thunder!
I've waited a very long time to see a film adaptation of Thor hit the big screen.  I've always been a fan of Marvel's version of the God of Thunder, and I'm even a bigger fan of the Thor of Norse mythology.  When I heard that Kenneth Branagh would be at the helm of this project, I knew immediately that Marvel was doing something really special with the story, and I was right.      Thor opens with a description of the great battle between the Asgardians …
review by . May 20, 2011
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The superhero movie has been a staple of the big budget studio blockbuster for a decade now. They always make it one of their tent pole movies; and even if it gets bad reviews the studio always gets their money back, and then some. Since movies like ‘The Dark Knight’ and ‘Iron Man,’ the bar is now so high it may not be possible to just crank these movies out. Unless you are looking to only use this plot as a jumping off point to a huge ensemble undertaking next year …
review by . September 17, 2011
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I wasn't expecting much when I saw this film. I was thinking that it would be worse than Daredevil. It was actually better. Asgard had been at war with the Storm Giants but a truce now prevails. Thor and his brother Loki are shown being tutored by their father, Odin who is also King of Asgard.    Odin decides that he will name Thor as his air and on the day he will make it public, some Storm Giants are able to sneak in to try to steal a casket that will give their realm great …
review by . May 23, 2011
The title to this post is in no way true... but it got your attention.      This  past weekend I happened to catch "Thor," the latest super hero movie destined to culminate in the fanboy joygazm that will soon be know as "The Avengers."  Now before I saw this movie I heard a great many mixed reviews from a great many people: "It's the greatest super hero movie ever," "It was totally gay," "The only thing redeeming was …
review by . May 18, 2011
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Julian Left ()
Member Since: Nov 4, 2010
Last Login: Mar 2, 2013 02:52 PM UTC
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Poster art for "Thor 3D."
Marvel Studios expands its film universe with a new type of superhero: THOR. This epic adventure spans the Marvel Universe; from present day Earth to the realm of Asgard. At the center of the story is The Mighty Thor, a powerful but arrogant warrior whose reckless actions reignite an ancient war. Thor is cast down to Earth and forced to live among humans as punishment. Once here, Thor learns what it takes to be a true hero when the most dangerous villain of his world sends the darkest forces of Asgard to invade Earth. Kenneth Branagh directs this fantasy epic which stars Australian actor Chris Hemsworth as the ancient Norse god, Tom Hiddleston as his evil brother Loki, Natalie Portman as Jane Foster, a young woman who befriends Thor on Earth, and Anthony Hopkins as Odin, Thor's father and king of Asgard. Expect to see agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., previously seen in ''Iron Man,'' to make an appearance, further forshadowing the coming of The Avengers!

Directed by Kenneth Branagh. With Natalie Portman, Chris Hemsworth, Idris Elba.  Visit IMDb for Photos, Showtimes, Cast, Crew, Reviews, Plot Summary, Comments, Discussions, Taglines, Trailers, Posters, Fan Sites
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Director: Kenneth Branagh
Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Runtime: 115 minutes
Studio: Marvel Studios, Paramount Pictures
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