As I get older and more jaded, I am always on the lookout for something original and provocative, but I still find joy in a very simple story that is well told, which brings me to THOR: RAGNAROK. Like most other Marvel fare, it is fairly predictable and leans hard into the campy humor to defuse any drama, but it’s just good fun, the best kind of comfort food.
In this third film in the THOR franchise, Odin is missing from Asgard, which results in his firstborn, Hela, the goddess of death, returning to claim the throne. This unites Thor and Loki to fight her, but first they have to free themselves from a planet ruled by the Grandmaster, where they find the Hulk and the last of the Valkyries to enlist as allies. The story throws away or puts aside a lot of stuff in preceding movies, notably the Warriors Three and Thor’s relationship with Jane Foster, but I was fine with it.
As with other Marvel films, RAGNAROK boasts some stellar actors, notably Cate Blanchett, Idris Elba, Tessa Thompson, Mark Ruffalo, Anthony Hopkins, and Jeff Goldblum. Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston as always perfectly bring the iconic main characters alive, though this Thor is a little sillier than in previous films built around the character (as is The Hulk, honestly). There’s a pretty funny cameo with Matt Damon and Sam Neill. I’m usually not a fan of Tessa Thompson, but she’s great in this. Taika Waititi directs, keeping things buoyant and energetic with fairly quick pacing and some terrific action sequences, particularly when Thor gets his mojo going for some god-level violence.
And that’s it, that’s the review. A true popcorn flick.