Thor: The Dark World

Chris Hemsworth

Natalie Portman

reviewed by Tom-Tom

starstarstar

        The Norse god of thunder is back in a rather light adventure full of jokes, mostly risk-free action and a closer look at more of the Nine Realms. Darcy Lewis the Intern (Kat Dennings) is back and this time she has her own intern. Natalie Portman is just as girlishly charming as ever as Dr. Jane Foster but this time is a central part of the plot, rather than a wide-eyed onlooker. The plot is quite simple. There were once Dark Elves who ruled in darkness. Now they’re back led by Malekith (Christoper Eccleston) and they want to make everything dark again.

Loki (Tom Hiddleston) is also back imprisoned but no less charming. As Robert Downey Jr. did with the frankly rather boring Tony Stark character (as he is in the comics), Hiddleston has elevated the somewhat silly comic book villain to one with depth, with pain behind that charming smile, to an almost Shakespearean scale. One of the Warriors Three, Hogun (Tadanobu Asano) who had almost no speaking parts and very little to do in the first film sits out most of this film after an action packed low-stakes beginning, which qualifies all of the powers of the Asgardians not the least, Thor’s awesome power. He’s a changed god after the first film and the events of Marvel’s The Avengers. Wiser, quieter, and more of a thinker. There is none of the foolhardy braggart like behavior which characterized him at the beginning of Thor.

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Thor

Chris Hemsworth

Natalie Portman

reviewed by Tom-Tom

starstarstarhalf star

Thor is the perhaps the oddest of the Avengers. He is, for all intents and purposes, a god of Norse mythology. He actually sports a red beard and hair in the old tales but in the Marvel Comics, he suddenly became blond and wore a winged helmet and red cape. I was rather taken with Norse mythology as a middle school student. I thought it was cool how they were mortal and didn’t spend all their time screwing around with humans figuratively and literally the way Papa Zeus seemed to do all the time in Greek-Roman Mythology. No, they were constantly kicking the crap out of each other. The idea of the world tree, Norns, and having Nine Realms on an Astral Scale seemed like proto-Sci-Fi from long ago. Marvel also has a Hercules and an Aries so we’ll have to see how they eventually fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) but for the time being, we have Thor (Chris Hemsworth), all prefabricated into a hero from the start of his origin movie.  Kenneth Branagh is directing and his frequent collaborator Patrick Doyle provides a beautiful score quite suited to the heavenly realms shown here.

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