You know it’s a crazy time, when you end up at the movie theater to see the third installment of a B superhero and when you leave, it is in the running for your favorite Marvel movie. But that was my experience with Thor: Ragnarok.
I never saw the 2nd Thor, I liked the first okay but I had no interest in the sequel, and after reading lukewarm reviews, I just never got to it. So when a third was announced, I didn’t really even think about it. Until it was announced the Taika Waititi would be the director. What We Do In The Shadows is one of my all-time favorite movies, and I was astonished that Disney would take a risk to put someone so relatively subversive at the helm. I started having Antman flashbacks, feared that Taika would end up off the project like Edgar Wright. But here we are, with a Waititi blockbuster making over 100mil opening weekend.
In order to make this work, they had to almost completely renovate the character of Thor. They couldn’t continue with the “fish out of water” dry humor they had going, and they managed to keep him in character but earnest and relatable. Maybe I just think this because they managed to cut off the ridiculous hair, but this was the best version of the character that I have seen so far.
But in order for Hemsworth to shine, he was really set up with a stellar supporting cast. Tessa Thompson as the amazing albeit flawed Valkerie, Cate Blanchett in two different insane headpieces, and of course, Jeff Goldblum as a tyrannical-orgy throwing-metallic blue eyeliner wearing-leader of a planet.
The last character I want to mention was Waititi’s own Korg, how funny he was, and how this pivots into what I believe really made this movie shine. Not to drag DC in a Marvel review, but these Marvel movies have been getting by with decent reviews and great box office purely for being lighthearted and a little funny. The current DC movies aren’t funny at all, so Feige &Co. skate by on the lowest possible standard of mediocre humor. But there were are few moments in Ragnarok that were truly funny to me. Some were stupid funny, but the movie was clearly written by a comedy writer with passion, and I think it breathed life into the whole picture.
I will need to see this again, but it is definitely in the running to dethrone Guardians 1 as my favorite film in the cinematic universe. Or Iron Man. You know what I’m going to need some time to think about it. 8.5/10