Thor is out, and it is being met with great critical and audience success, but does it deserve the praise it is getting? In my opinion, no. Now obviously I’m only speaking for myself here, but I think Thor Ragnarok is one of the worst MCU movies to date.
Before I delve into all the reasons I didn’t enjoy it, and there was a lot, there was definitely some things to love about Thor: Ragnarok.
The best part of this movie was by far the action sequences. Marvel do comic action sequences like no other. The movie starts off with a great sequence of Thor battling a cocky Surtur and his goons. It was action packed and included a scene from Mjolnir’s perspective, something never seen before. The final battle with Thor against Hela’s un-dead army while fully controlling his lightening abilities was also something else, pretty much any of the action Sequences with Hela were great really. Her movements and sword generation were fluid and felt natural. And finally the Thor vs Hulk fight, visually it was, for lack of a better word. incredible. Seeing Hulk throw Thor across the arena and seeing Thor try to calm Hulk down using the same technique used my black widow in Age of Ultron, was a great world connecting strategy.
I also really enjoyed the world building that went on over the course of the film. My favorite thing about any Marvel movie are the Easter eggs and references to other Marvel properties. Thor was no different. During a scene in which actors (great cameos from Matt Damon, Sam Niell and Luke Hemsworth) were reenacting the death of Loki, they reference a time Thor was turned into a frog. a great comic book Easter egg. The statue of Beta-Ray Bill on the Grandmaster’s tower was another great Planet Hulk Easter egg. There was also the clarification of the Infinity gauntlet in Odin’s treasure room when Hela outright states that it is a fake, confirming that the one Thanos has at the end of Age of Ultron, is in fact the only one.
Speaking of Hela, she was great! I really felt she was a true threat to Thor and the people of Asgard. Her motivations were clear and the way she went about them were down right menacing. If she is not dead, which I do hope she isn’t, I would love to see her again in another Marvel movie. The Idea of Thanos courting her instead of mistress death from the comics would make total sense after her portrayal in this movie.
Now, the bad points.. The “comedy”. Thor Ragnarok tried far too hard to be funny. Riding on the coat tales of guardians and guardians 2, Thor attempted to bring that type of laughter into the Asgardian universe and it just did not work. I love Thor when he is funny. the first Thor movie had some of the best and most memorable one liners in the Whole MCU. I bet if you ask most Marvel fans who said “son of Cole,” they would easily be able to tell you who. Thor doesn’t need to force stupid one liners down our throat every other sentence to try and entertain us. He is a god fighting a radioactive monster in an alien arena on a different planet overseen by a celestial.. that is entertainment enough. The jokes and stupidity seemed totally out of character for most if not all of the returning cast. Thor’s encounter with Surtur was down right awkward to watch. Surtur is the destroyer of Asgard and the bringer of Ragnarok, but instead of giving him a grand terrifying entrance we are introduced to him with Thor’s back to him while swinging around and joking saying “he’ll be there in a minute”. I cannot forgive the direction they took Banner/Hulk, from one of the smartest and deeply troubled characters in the MCU to a literal slapstick joke (think jumping from the ship). While they did touch on the subject of a smarter more understanding hulk, he was made to look like nothing more than a silly child. Hulk has been Hulk for 2 years because he has felt that earth abandoned him and left him out of fear. He had found a place that worshiped him for him and not for being Bruce Banner. This could have been a great arc for Bruce/hulk. to see how they handled this clash of worlds but instead they decided to make a Hulk junk joke. Another problem with the comedy, was that everyone was trying to be the funny one. The Grandmaster was no different to Thor, or Loki. Had this been a different movie, I would have loved Korg and Meik, I think they had some of the funniest lines in the movie, but they were overshadowed by the all the other flat jokes. Not every joke was bad and there were times that I was genuinely laughing. Thor trying to get into the Quinjet and having to say “Pointbreak” was great! I wanted more jokes like that, rather than referencing a portal as “the devil’s anus”.
I really wanted to enjoy this movie and while there are some things to enjoy about Thor and there is a good story that could be made from the material used. This sadly felt like a straight to home video parody of that movie.