Thor ragna-rocked my world

Jonah Ocuto

More stories from Jonah Ocuto

Issue 3
January 25, 2019
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Issue 5
May 18, 2018

What has beautiful golden locks, a rock-hard midsection and biceps the size of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s head? Definitely not Owen Wilson, that’s for sure. I guess Chris Hemsworth will have to do.

Thor: Ragnarok marks the high-budget debut of director Taika Waititi, an interesting departure from previous cult classics like “Hunt for the Wilderpeople” and “What We Do in the Shadows”. The story continues the Marvel Cinematic Universe, featuring Thor (Chris Hemsworth) exiled after his sister Hela (Cate Blanchett), the goddess of death, destroys his hammer and begins to take over the mythical city of Asgard. Thor teams up with Loki (Tom Hiddleston), a warrior named Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) and the incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) in a quest to save the people of Asgard.

I’ll be honest with you here — the other Thor movies kind of sucked. I mean, they weren’t bad per se, but compared to the rest of the films in the MCU, they’re definitely scraping the bottom of the barrel. Marvel took a chance with a lesser-known director helming a bigger movie in the franchise, and thankfully it paid off.

Thor: Ragnarok is exciting, upbeat and hilarious. There wasn’t a moment in the theater where my smile dropped, unless we’re counting the 4 or 5 times a child kicked my seat; or, the 6 continuous minutes of a bag of chips crinkling. Seriously, 6 minutes? Just eat the chips, please and thank you.

The writing is simultaneously phenomenal and leaves more to be desired; on one hand, the comedy always lands in unique and enthralling ways, but at the same time, takes away time that could be spent developing character and adding thematic weight. Overall, the plot is a great way to have fun in the theater without having to focus too much on what’s going on. I’ve never been personally attached to Thor as a hero, so the amount of comedy in the movie was great for me, but may leave die-hard fans wanting more.

The movie is shot with a surprising influx of color coming from the generally monotone palette of previous Marvel films, giving the film an aura of joy and lightheartedness that’s refreshing to experience.

One of the films highlights by far was the addition of Jeff Goldblum as the Grandmaster. Waititi made an excellent choice by letting Goldblum go as far as possible in the role, giving the character an unmistakably Goldblum charm and wit. Every time he appeared on screen, a belly laugh was sure to ensue.

Ultimately, the film owes its excellence to Waititi’s vision: one of fun, void of any unnecessary musings on what it means to be a hero. In Waititi’s film, fun is the first priority — Thor: Ragnarok more than succeeded at that. Thor: Ragnarok earns an A.