Movie Review Rewind: Thor (2011)

Brandon Vick flips the calendar back to 2011 for a look at Thor on this edition of Movie Review Rewind.

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Even though I believe the summer blockbuster season began with Fast Five last weekend, this weekend is the official launch and Thor is set to kick things off. If the rest of the movie season is anything like this movie, then we are in for one hell of a summer. Thor is awesome in almost every way you can imagine. It is fun, entertaining, visually wonderful, and takes itself just serious enough while still allowing room for some humor. It has everything a movie needs: A hero, a villain, betrayal, and romance. And all of it comes from Marvel who is on a roll when it comes to pure fun and entertainment.

The Mighty Thor (Chris Hemsworth) comes from the mystical realm of Asgard where he is set to become the new King and replace his father Odin (Anthony Hopkins). But, it becomes clear that he still has a lot to learn. Thor has a lot of pride in being the greatest warrior and future King of Asgard. But, along with that comes a huge ego. This causes him to take things into his own hands. His recklessness causes an ancient war to start all over again. Due to his actions and completely ignoring of his father’s orders, Thor is banished to Earth with no powers and no hammer.

While on Earth, Jane (Natalie Portman), Erik (Stellan Skarsgard), and Darcy (Kat Dennings) run in to Thor (literally with their vehicle). And they want to find out who he is and where he comes from. So if they help Thor get his powerful hammer back, he will tell them what they want to know to help with their research. Of course, they have no idea of the journey they are all about to go on. Meanwhile, back on Asgard, Thor’s brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), has always been jealous of Thor. So, he plans to take advantage of his banishment and to become King himself. If that means lying, betraying, and killing his own father to achieve it, then he will. Not only does Loki plan on taking over Asgard, but he plans on taking out Thor and everyone else on Earth with him.

Director Kenneth Branagh has been an actor for decades. He’s starred in films such as Hamlet, Frankenstein, Pirate Radio, and Valkyrie just to name a few. But as a director, he seems to never quite get the credit he deserves. That will hopefully change after people see Thor. He has created such a unique and magical universe. At the same time, he keeps the movie grounded while on Earth. It is a terrific mixture of fiction and reality. That is quite an accomplishment considering he is taking on such a larger-than-life character in the Marvel universe. He makes this comic-book adaptation feel genuine and epic, while being fun and magical.

Hemsworth plays the God of Thunder and is the perfect casting. He has the look and build of a real superhero. While there is no real difficulty in the acting, he looks pretty cool with that iconic hammer in his hand. It’s fun to see Portman in a big budget movie just being a normal girl who you could fall in love with even if you weren’t a superhero. But, you’d probably have a better chance being with her if you were. There is nothing wrong with any of the acting. Whether it is from young actors like Hemsworth, Hiddleston, and Dennings or veterans like Hopkins, Portman and Skarsgard.

Handling the story and the look of a movie can make or break it. Thor has the same attention and care as X-Men, Spider-Man, and Iron Man. It is full of action-adventure and certainly can stand as its own movie and deserves to be in the same company with the other Marvel icons.

Brandon Vick is a member of The Music City Film Critics’ Association, the resident film critic of the SoBros Network, and the star of The Vick’s Flicks Podcast. Follow him on Twitter @SirBrandonV and be sure to search #VicksFlicks for all of his latest movie reviews.

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