Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Film Review - THOR
After the attack results in a bitter end to peace between the two worlds, Odin strips his arrogant son of his godly abilities and invincible hammer weapon, dubbed Mjolnir, and plunges him to Earth – New Mexico, to be more specific. Following a dusty desert automobile collision, he’s befriended by a pair of astrophysicists, Erik Selvig (a very game Stellan Skarsgaard) and the lovely Jane Foster (Natalie Portman – energetic in an underwritten role), who attempt to make sense of the lusty bearded being. While Thor, alongside his mortal helpers, searches for a means of returning home, Loki wrestles rulership of Asgard from Odin and puts a nefarious plan into action involving the Frost Giants and a towering, titanium, Gort-like goliath called the Destroyer. In order to face the impending threat, the once mighty warrior must prove himself worthy of lifting Mjolnir from its new earthly resting place and earn back his formidable superpowers.
Among the supporting cast, an unrecognizable and imposing Idris Elba, playing Heimdall, the guardian sentry of the portal connecting Asgard to Earth, is a stand-out. Despite being buried under a potentially giggle-inducing mountain of golden armour, the actor projects hard-as-iron noble grandeur. He makes us believe that even Thor or Loki would think twice about crossing him. Also notable is the always welcome Kat Dennings, as the astrophysics team’s intern Darcy, who delivers the lion’s share of the film’s biggest laughs.
Thor feels like a film made by people who genuinely cared about telling an entertaining story with endearing, interesting characters. Branagh and his crew respect the intelligence of the audience, and understand that CG and stunts can only carry an expensive comic-book movie like this so far. Considering the usual standards for blockbuster filmmaking, it’s a refreshing approach that, as far as I’m concerned, is pretty much akin to godliness.