And so the summer blockbuster season begins and to start it off it's the Norse God from the Marvel Universe, Thor!
Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is a brave yet arrogant warrior who lives in Asgard, one of the Nine Realms connected by Cosmic Tree of Life. His father Odin (Anthony Hopkins), the ruler of Asgard, once led his army in a battle against the Frost Giants of Jotunheim and their leader Laufey (Colm Feore), who intended to use an artifact known as the Casket of Ancient Winters to take over the Nine Realms, starting with Earth.
The Giants were defeated and the Casket was sealed away in Odin's vault, where it was protected by the Destroyer, an invincible metallic golem loyal to Odin.
Years later, on the day of Thor's coronation as king, Asgard is attacked by a band of Frost Giants who intend to steal the Casket. Although the Frost Giants fail, an outraged Thor goes against his father's orders and travels to Jotunheim to confront Laufey.
Accompanying him are his brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and his childhood friend Sif (Jaimie Alexander) as well as the Warriors Three: Volstagg (Ray Stevenson), Fandral (Joshua Dallas) and Hogun (Tadanobu Asano). The group is overpowered and later saved by Odin, who is enraged since Thor's action lead to the war between the two realms, which ended years ago by a fragile truce, to start again.
Odin strips Thor of his powers and banishes him to Earth alongside with his hammer Mjolnir, which contains his powers and is protected by a spell that allows only those who are worthy to wield it…..and that is where Thor's journey begins as he discovers what it takes to be a hero.
I'll get straight into it. it's a good movie and although it appears like a stand alone movie, it really sets the stage for The Avengers movie that's due out next year. It's linked very nicely with the post credits scene from Iron Man 2 and the anticipation for all The Avengers to assemble is huge!
Back to the movie though, the visual effects are good and not overkill which tends to happen with summer blockbusters. The fight scenes are what I would expect from these sort of comic book films and the acting is solid. Kenneth Branagh has put together a fine cast which gels, the chemistry is there and Thor's feelings for Jane Foster comes through very well.
What i especially like about this film is the comedy element and Branagh litters it throughout the film brilliantly. You see, we have a greek God in modern times and in a different realm, just think of the comic relief potential. There was a scene where Thor walks into a pet store asking for a horse, the entire cinema just burst out laughing and it was such scenes throughout the film that were cleverly played.
While Chris Hemsworth certainly proves his calibre as the next big thing, a special mention definately has to be given to Sir Anthony Hopkins for his potrayal of Odin, he just oozed epicness each time he was on screen.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
This movie deserves credit for doing something right which could have gone so wrong. With Thor, this was the trickest of all The Avengers to translate on screen and they got it just right.
Do stay for the post credits scene in what promises to set the stage for more of the Marvel Universe.
Photos courtesy of United International Pictures Singapore
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