‘Thor: Ragnarok’ ignites a spark in phase 3 for Marvel

Courtesy of Collider.com

Courtesy of Collider.com

Shaye Holladay McCarthy, Magazine editor

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The two prior Thor movies had a more serious and bleak tone, but Director Taika Waititi took an unexpected approach to make this film more light hearted and funny. Waititi’s change in tone from the directors of the first two films makes this movie more enjoyable and interesting. The film is humorous and full of the God of Thunder at his fullest potential.

After the Battle of Sokovia, Thor has been searching for the Infinity Stones that he saw in his vision in Avengers: Age of Ultron. When Thor returns to Asgard, he forces his adopted brother, Loki, to help him find their father. The two return to Midgard (Earth) when Loki goes missing as well. He then encounters Stephen Strange who helps the two Asgardian’s find their father and returns Loki to Thor.

Strange leads the two to Norway where they find Odin and the Goddess of Death, Hela (Cate Blanchett). Hela is stronger than the brothers and they attempt to escape and return to Asgard through the Bifröst, but Hela pursues them and forces them into space. The Goddess of Death arrives on Asgard and destroys its army with ease before resurrecting the army of the dead that fought with her before. On Sakaar, Thor reunites with the Hulk/ Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) and his brother, just not in the expected way.

When Thor and Banner escape the Grandmaster’s arena, he orders Scrapper 142 (Valkyrie) and Loki to return them. Deciding to take Thor up on his offer to help him reclaim Asgard, Valkyrie takes Loki as her prisoner as a sign of good faith. The group returns to Asgard to take on Hela and her army of the dead.  

The first two movies focus on the struggle to keep peace between nine realms, and Thor’s struggle to prove he is a worthy heir to take up  throne on Asgard. Director Taika Waititi chooses stray from the plot of the previous movies and head in the direction of Thor accepting his fate to be the next king of Asgard. Waititi also does an excellent job of showing a more humorous side to Loki and Thor.

Mark Mothersbaugh, founder of Devo, was chosen to select which songs are featured in Thor: Ragnarok. Along with featuring songs from past Marvel movies, he chose to feature is the “Immigrant Song” by Led Zepplin. In an interview with Den of Geek Waititi said, “But from the start we’d always talked about using ‘Immigrant Song’ in the film, because it just makes perfect sense for that character, doesn’t it?” Waititi isn’t wrong to feature this song as it includes lyrics inspired by Norse mythology.

Just like other Marvel movies, co-creator of Thor, Doctor Strange, Black Panther, Iron Man, Daredevil and many other characters make a cameo in Thor: Ragnarok. Along with the classic cameo of Stan Lee, Waititi brings in other actors he’s familiar with to make cameos as well. Some other actors he added to the cast include Matt Damon, Rachel House, Luke Hemsworth and Sam Neill.Waititi also appears in Ragnarok as Korg, one of the Grandmaster’s gladiators, and provides the motion capture for Surtur who is voiced by Clancy Brown. Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange also makes a brief yet important appearance as well.

Thor: Ragnarok is one of Marvel’s best films developing the same humorous tone as Guardians of the Galaxy and the same cosmic adventure. The movie is a bright, colorful, fun, action-packed cosmic adventure for Thor and his brother Loki. The brothers definitely find themselves in interesting situations that are less than ideal once Hela invades Asgard.

Chris Hemsworth (Thor) and Tom Hiddleston (Loki) are both extremely talented actors who give this film most of its humor. Tessa Thompson, the actress of Valkyrie, shows a lot of potential in becoming part of the MCU as another powerful female in the absence Asgardian warrior, Sif (Jaimie Alexander). Jeff Goldblum’s Grandmaster is another large factor in the humor of this movie once Thor and Loki reunite on Sakaar. The Grandmaster is also the brother of Benicio del Toro’s Collector from Guardians of the Galaxy. Producer Kevin Feige has expressed interest in seeing the two brothers together in a future film.