Reviews

Thor

3

I say thee yay!

“You are no match for the mighty…” cries Chris Hemsworth’s Thor in the latest Marvel opus.

The sentence goes unfinished thanks to a hypodermic needle plunged into the God of Thunder’s bottom, a pomposity-puncturing injection that sums up Kenneth Branagh’s approach to one of the more preposterous heroes in the comic book pantheon.

Eyebrows were raised when the British luvvie behind Henry V and Frankenstein was put in charge of this $150m behemoth, especially after some of his recent efforts behind the camera (Sleuth, The Magic Flute) and in front (The Boat That Rocked).

Chances are, though, that even the most ardent acolyte will be won over by a film that manages to poke genial fun at the helmet-wearing hammer-wielder, whether he’s lording it up on his planet or stranded on ours, while still adhering to the same bangs for bucks ratio as the Iron Man and X-Men cycles.

Ok, so early scenes in shiny, spotless Asgard do recall the campy flourishes of Flash Gordon, particularly when Anthony Hopkins shuffles on as supreme ruler Odin in gold armour and piratical eye-patch.

But once the action relocates to barren, rocky Jotunheim for some spectacular fisticuffs with its resident Frost Giants, the movie cranks up a notch, the huge blue meanies proving a significant challenge for Hemsworth, his mallet and his hangers-on (Jaimie Alexander, Tadanobu Asano and Joshua Dallas, amusingly nicknamed elsewhere as “Xena, Jackie Chan and Robin Hood”).

Yet it’s only when Thor is banished to Earth for his irresponsible warmongering that the film really begins in earnest, his arrival in modern-day New Mexico enabling much fish-out-of-water humour of the Crocodile Dundee variety as he struggles to come to terms with our funny ways.

Teaming up with Natalie Portman’s sceptical astrophysicist (after her truck has knocked him down twice), her Scandinavian boss (Stellan Skarsgard) and her hilariously dry friend (Kat Dennings), the initially wooden Hemsworth displays real comic chops whether boisterously shattering coffee cups at a roadside diner or marching into a pet store and demanding a horse.

We’re having such a good time it almost seems a shame to periodically return to Asgard to reveal the nefariousness of Thor’s brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston, underwhelming) and his plans for domination of the nine realms linked by the ‘Rainbow Bridge’ that Idris Elba’s Heimdall stands watch over like some intergalactic doorman.

Nods to /The Avengers/ are supplied by Samuel L Jackson’s obligatory post-credits Nick Fury appearance and a pleasing, unbilled cameo from Jeremy Renner as archer Hawkeye.

And while the ending is a little weak, it at least comes after a splendid set-piece that sees an entire town decimated by Loki’s robot plaything.

Well, they don’t call it the Destroyer for nothing.
 

Verdict:

The most problematic hurdle in The Avengers’ path is cleared with ease and some style by a film that makes a virtue of its inherent silliness. You’re up, Captain America.

Film Details

User Reviews

    • ChrisWootton

      Apr 18th 2011, 13:21

      Interesting.. almost every said in this review is the polar opposite to Empires.. personally I'll take TF's reviews over Empire any day but either way nice to see that it seems to be a pretty good movie.

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    • CaptainCrazy

      Apr 18th 2011, 14:57

      Hmm, this review seems to disagree with every other review out there. I wasn't looking forward to this film but will see it now purely from reading all the positive reviews out there. 3 stars??!?!? I think this will be one of those reviews where the magazine offers an embarrassed apology a few years later...

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    • AstAr

      Apr 18th 2011, 16:21

      I think this will be one of those reviews where the magazine offers an embarrassed apology a few years later... COULDN'T AGREE MORE WITH YOU CAPTAINCRAZY!!!

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    • JDogg1982

      Apr 18th 2011, 17:44

      5

      Great film!!!! How you can put it in the same rating category as Red Riding Hood is beyond me!!!

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    • DanRose

      Apr 18th 2011, 20:39

      Very interesting review.... not what others have said at all... also not much substance to the review at all....you want a decent review, I was impressed with this one: http://www.denofgeek.com/movies/854370/thor_review.html

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    • Gingerbread0Man

      Apr 19th 2011, 2:38

      3

      Way too spoiler-ific with ruining the ending credits scene, guys...

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    • sagent33

      Apr 19th 2011, 13:20

      the review screams "we're sitting on the fence for this one boys". Also it does seems lacking in supstance and contains a nice spoiler, as mentioned. I have read mainly positive reviews for this one, so will still be checking it out. I like to have a small look at TF's reviews, but some seem lazy.

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    • Mattsimus

      Apr 25th 2011, 21:00

      I'm gonna post my far superior review to tf's after I've seen it this coming Friday! This review is both lazy and empty! Ya do realise you gave both the prestige and superman returns 4 star reviews, although I think you gave prestige a star lower than you should have, you still gave supes 4? Did you not see this movie before you reviewed it! Tf is so pro Dc it's un real n I feel it's justified with batman etc, but come on ya gotta have some continuity. If Thor is average or less then I'll be bk first thing to beg ur forgiveness however if it's atleast 4 star worthy like everybody else has awarded it then I'll know discontinuing my TF subscription was a wise thing to do, cos seriously you guys havnt been the same since ya cocked up on revenge of the fallen. So it is written, so shall it be done x

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    • jolopity

      Apr 25th 2011, 21:45

      I've just been to a preview of Thor and I've gotta eat humble pie. It's actually a really good film! So don't scoff at it guys & gals, just go, watch, enjoy and then sit through the credits to get all excited by the Shield/Nick Fury bit at the end :D

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    • jolopity

      Apr 25th 2011, 21:46

      4

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    • Mattsimus

      Apr 25th 2011, 22:28

      Jolopity......thats the s**t im talking about!!! yyyyaaaaayyyyyyyyyyy

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    • herosthroe

      Apr 25th 2011, 23:00

      3

      I didn't read a single review until now- and I've just seen the movie... Pretty much what the reviewer says above- though Chris Hemsworth played it a lot better than I'd have thought he could...

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    • ITSABITNUTTY

      Apr 26th 2011, 15:03

      4

      The fat ginger bloke at aicn gets it spot on. This is a blistering, exciting movie that introduces Thor at just the right level. It could have been Lord of the Rings with vikings, but it didn't need to be. It could have been Masters of the Universe but thankfully isn't. It is very much Marvel and J Michael Straczynski's recent Thor comic run, mixing Asgardian mightiness with small town moments of mirth and wonder. A perfect lead in to The Avengers – Downey Jr and Hemsworth together will be so much fun – but also a fantastic standalone movie that is thunderous.

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    • moviemoments

      Apr 27th 2011, 2:06

      3

      After watching Thor i started asking myself question : does Natalie Portman take every single role Hollywood offers her without reading a script? Or maybe she thinks she won't get a good role so she takes everything. I mean she was great in Black Swan and then I saw her in No Srings Attached and I was disappointed. And then again she was in Your Highness and now in Thor. And I can't take this pain no more. I always thought she is a good actress but after watching her latest movies I started to doubt it. I still hope that this is her bad choices not a lack of talent. It is definitely Natalie Portman's year. She's got four movies already and 2011 just started but I would rather want people to say she had one great movie that one great and three bad movies.

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    • Iciclefan

      Apr 27th 2011, 9:54

      4

      I've been a big Marvel fan for 30 years and I'm as critical as they come if it's not right. I tend to agree with most of the reviews going around that Marvel have done a spot on job of Thor. They kept the good stuff and dropped the bad, ending up up with a fun romp that anyone can enjoy. There were a few daft or underused bits but overall I came out buzzing. I've never been a big Captain America fan but the trailer for that even put me on a high. Heimdell, the observatory, the destroyer, Thor's armour, his hammer; all fantastic. Perhaps the review has seen one too many superhero films. Well there's lots more coming!! When I was a kid these films Marvel are bringing out were a pipe dream. To see them on the big screen now is really amazing - even as a 44 year old!! Keep 'em coming.

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    • moviemoments

      Apr 28th 2011, 23:45

      3

      After watching Thor I satrted asking myself questions. Does Natalie Portman take every single role Hollywood offers her without reading the scripts? Or maybe she thinks she won't get a ood role so she takes everything. I mean she was great in Black Swan and then I saw her in No Strings Attached and I was dissapointed. And then again she was in Your Highness and now in Thor. And I can't take this pain no more. I always thought she is a great actress but after watching her latest movies I started to doubt it. Byt I still hope that it is her bad choices not her lack of talent. it is definetely Natalie Portmans year . She's got four movies already and 2011 just started but i would rather want people to say she had one great movie than one great and three bad movies. And yet again Thor is one of those movie I was excited about after watching the trailer. And I just couldn't wait to see it but after watching it I have no words to describe how dissapointed I am. First of all Thor is in 3D. So I'm asking why? Can someone tell me why? There was no need to make it in 3D.It wasn't an eye popping 3D experience. And when I took the glasses off I really couldn't see the difference. It just gave me a huge headache. Second of all the feeling between Thor and Jane was so unreal. There was no story. The were barely talking to each other. And the next thing I know they are in love. how did it happen? Don't ask me. Thor himself was actually really good. Very good looking with a sense of humour he made that movie worth watching. :-) Special effect were just amazing, good action but something was missing and I was hoping for a breath taking experience.

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    • timberlandsale

      Apr 29th 2011, 8:05

      All of us have read timberland clearance thrilling stories in which the hero had only a limited and specified time to live. Sometimes it was as long as a year, sometimes as short as 24 hours. But always we were interested in discovering mens timberland boots just how the doomed hero chose to spend his last days or his last hours. I speak, of course, of free men who have a choice, not condemned criminals whose sphere of womens timberland boots activities is strictly delimited. Such stories set us thinking, wondering what we should do under similar circumstances. What events, what experiences, what associations should we crowd into those last hours as mortal timberland 3 eyes boat beings? HYD

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    • KingofSpain

      May 2nd 2011, 22:40

      4

      Marvel's Crocodile Dundee, except Dundee has lost his big knife and the Kiwis are wreaking havoc back home in Oz! Seriously, TF is completely sitting on the fence with this one. Thor is Marvel's best pre-Avengers movie thus far. Well done for hiring Brannagh, you can see the positive effects of his direction from start to finish. An origins story with some meat on the bones; some Shakesperean verbal jousting, and some wonderfully timed comedy. Well done that man! Although the arrival of Thor's matey's in New Mexico seemed a little out of place (think medieval themed fancy dress party), I have to say that this film was the most enjoyable and swiftest 2 hours I've had in a cinema for a long, long time. Plus, the best post-credits Avengers scene to date!

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    • CaptainCrazy

      May 3rd 2011, 17:58

      4

      Now that I have actually seen the film I can confirm what has widely been said - Thor is a film to be seen and appreciated. Branagh has to date been given the trickiest superhero film and he pulls it off with confidence. There were a few times during the film were I thought we were entering Cheese County but he pulls it back just enough to keep the excitement going. Every one has praised Hemsworth (my girlfriend for different reasons - the b***h) but Hiddleston needs some attention too. I was actually rooting for him - not to win - but at least gain some satisfation. His showdown with Hopkins was heart-wrenching. And Hemsworth? All I can say is wow. His scene in Star Trek was just the tip of the iceberg. He makes you BELIEVE in Thor. From arrogant warrior to humbled mortal, he will have your sympathy. "Can I go home now?" Lump...in...the...throat. Outstanding.

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    • Azazeal4eva

      May 6th 2011, 9:03

      4

      Saw Thor Last night. The 3D is a bit more like a pop up book then staring through a window in to a magical world, but the movie is good enough to make you forget about it for the most part, no reason to be in 3d, but every reason to go and see the movie. i feel the 3 star review is sitting on the fence a bit and a shame its not more encouraging. The bad guy is understated and more manipulating then plain evil, he is just jealous and wants to prove himself, I'm glad it was as subtle as it was, by the end of it ( after credits scene) you know there is more malice there now and will be interesting to see the next development. Recommend to all very entertaining and one to add to the collection on DVD/blu.

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    • Darkstar

      May 6th 2011, 14:24

      2

      Having recently seen this movie i feel that on the whole it was a dissapointment. It is certainly not without merrit, the casting on the whole works well, and having Brannagh on board as director provides an intelligence and class that the majority of big budget tent pole releases often lack. That said films of this nature do have a tendency to stand or fall largely upon the spectacle they offer (plot and character development are usually a welcome bonus). This certainly has the former but not much in the way of the latter. A set piece battle that effectively leads to Thor's exile looks for the most part like a cut scene from a computer game, another sequence heavily promoted in the trailers in which a robot is sent to earth to destroy the god of thunder is over before it gets started. The ending also feels rushed and anticlimactic. Some people have bemoaned Total Film for giving THOR a three star rating, i personally feel that this is optomistically generous for a film that is not much more than a well dressed, attractive looking panto.

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    • jeffamania

      May 7th 2011, 19:00

      4

      to the guys at totalfilm.....I'm sorry but Empire got this movie right**s a four star. Its a great funny action adventure it has two flaws 1. Periodic returns to Asgard were underwhelming 2. Branagh (director) doesn't do action well! So the showdown fight scenes are somewhat weak!!! Otherwise....well done everyone involved with the movie...I enjoyed it and I will be buying the bluray. (yes good enough for bluray)

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    • hulk68

      May 9th 2011, 11:02

      4

      Its a lot better than what the review tries to have you thinking. Its fun, the action scenes are spectacular (I only saw it in 2D) and it is more than your average bolck buster. NO TF wont be regretting it after a few years because this aint Freaking Transformers 2

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    • Trasea

      May 13th 2011, 15:55

      3

      Once again, Total Film gives a review that exactly matches what I was thinking.

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    • craigy111

      Jun 7th 2011, 1:10

      3

      Well I have to say after seeing Thor I wasn't totally disapointed, I wasn't expecting much before I went to see it, but it was better than what I was expecting. I wouldn't say it was anything special, but just average. Hopefully Captain America will be a bit better as I'm not expecting big things out of it either.

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    • Legacy3D

      Jun 7th 2011, 14:19

      3

      Two world’s one hero. Set in the world of Asgard and Earth, Thor begins in 965 A.D with Odin (Anthony Hopkins) the king of Asgard battling the frost giants to prevent the takeover of the nine realms. Present day sees Thor (Chris Hemsworth) Odin’s son ,about to be recognized as king of Asgard, however after an attack led my Thor on the frost giants; Odin casts Thor out of Asgard where he lands in New Mexico without his hammer or any powers. Thor is found by scientist Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) and her team (Kat Dennings, Stellan Skarsgård).After a group known as S.H.I.E.L.D takes all of Jane’s research and Thor, s hammer, they both join together to take there items back. While this takes place the frost giants look to take over Asgard once again with help from an insider with the kingdom. Thor must return to home to prevent the takeover from happening. Following the production of other marvel comic book heroes, Thor brings to the screen a new hero. As with a large number of movies these days it has been released in 3D from editing in post-production. The 3D effects are not bad but not needed ether, Chris Hemsworth as Thor is well cast and Natalie Portman is good to see in her role. The story if a little predictable is enjoyable to watch with effects used in the creation of the realms and battles between odin/thor and the frost giants. Look for a cameo from Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury commander of S.H.I.E.L.D. Overall Thor is nothing very special but on par with other marvel comic adaptations

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    • willow138

      Jun 14th 2011, 2:14

      4

      Ok @Darkstar wtf?? two stars? really! ? It was awesome. And from the trailers I was really reluctant to go see this but being a hero fan I had to check it out and boy am i glad I did. Marvel have done well here. With this and Xmen First Class , DC will now have to raise their game with Dark Knight Rises if they are gonna reign superior in the movie territory . and i am a DC girl so hate to admit that Thor is an epic film well worth the cinema fee! Excellent.

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    • jmorell

      Oct 5th 2011, 22:12

      Terrible film. Two hours of my life I won't get back.

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    • killerworks

      Jul 26th 2013, 18:07

      Loki is the worst villain Ive ever seen, he made Thor pt 1 look horrible n he looks like a wimp .... come one !!!!

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