In a magical realm, a war has raged between
the Norse gods and a powerful enemy called the Frost Giants. These
adversaries have tried to infiltrate the majestic city of Asgard, which
belongs to King Odin (Anthony Hopkins). Since they were young the king
taught his sons that they must never start a war but only retaliate if
truly necessary. His sons are Thor (Chris Hemsworth), an arrogant
hammer-wielding warrior and the jealous Loki (Tom Hiddleston).
respond to a sneak attack on the kingdom by the Frost Giants, Thor takes
it upon himself to lead a group of his friends to punish the beasts.
After barely surviving a deadly battle and having one of his men
wounded, Thor is interrogated by Odin and banished for disobeying his
father's order for peace. He is stripped of his powers and both he and
his magical hammer are blasted out of the magic realm and into the real
Crash landing on Earth, Thor is hit by the car of astrophysicist
Jane Foster (Natalie Portman). She's been investigating the gateways
between the real and magical worlds in the New Mexico desert. When her
data is stolen by shady government agents, who have also set up a
perimeter around the engraved hammer, she enlists the help of Thor to
get both of their items back.
Daddy (Odin, Anthony Hopkins)
attempting to keep his son (Thor, Chris Hemsworth) in line
Here is a film that is simultaneously
comforting and dazzling due to its predictable narrative. We're so swept
up by the visual exuberance of director Kenneth Branagh that the
familiarity of an ageing king and his fractured kingdom rarely troubles
us. There are predictable double crosses, some romance and opportunities
for redemption. It's hard to go wrong with such safe, timeless and
universal material. And given the steady hand with which the epic is
presented, the film engages. The kingdom of Asgard is itself a stirring
and magnificent creation.
It's a golden fortress and a majestic city,
sweepingly built upon and viewed from across the sea. The interiors are
painted with a bronze palette, only to be crusted over by frosty
intruders. It's a handsome film to look at, where the
long shots employ some brief but noticeable touches of depth. And the only reason
for not hearing some alarm bells during an early battle is because of
the booming sound effects. There's a slickly handled sequence where Thor
and his friends take down waves of enemies, but it also suggests that
the film will, like many blockbusters, turn into a big budget video
But after this lengthy stint in the magical realm something unexpected
happens: the film develops a sense of humour. One of the most enjoyable
aspects of Thor is when our reckless hero finds himself in the real
world, but still retains his traditional Norse mannerisms. The fish out
of water jokes work well because the scenes are actually funny and
unexpected. The best of these comedic moments are when Thor walks into a
pet store, announcing he needs a horse, and in a diner where he smashes
a mug on the ground demanding more drink. Pay attention for a Tony Stark
reference from S.H.I.E.L.D agent Phil Coluson (Clark Gregg) towards the
end of the film, and also an extra scene after the credits too.
Natalie Portman as the sexiest
astrophysicist in history, and a charismatic Chris Hemsworth as Thor
I like Hemworth's performance in the
comedic scenes the best. He plays them straight and serious, as all good
comedy should be. His charisma does fade in and out, flashing a smile
occasionally but largely being reduced to gruff manly, measured speak.
Still, his testosterone voice recalls Russell Crowe in Gladiator and
he's physically adept too. It's a step up from the Saddle Club and with
more opportunities to develop his performance in the inevitable sequel
he'll improve. Portman has him more than covered for charisma, though.
don't know what an astrophysicist is meant to sound like but she has
boundless energy, with an adorable presence on screen. She's a lot of
fun to watch. Hopkins has very little time and with mechanical dialogue
there's less emotion to be found in his character or Thor's sidekicks.
Regardless, the skill shown in the bloodless action sequences is
apparent and the humour is relieving. Comic book fans and younger
viewers will thrive here on a film that knows exactly what it is.
Commentary by director
Marvel One-Shot: The Consultant
Road to the Avengers
Deleted Scenes with optional commentary
Avengers Animated Trailer