Thor – Ragnarok: Asgard Must Fall


Inspired by Norse myth in which a series of events lead to the destruction and rebirth of the world. In the case of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Ragnarok comes when Hela (Cate Blanchett) the firstborn of Odin (Anthony Hopkins) returns from banishment to Odin’s death. During their first battle, Thor and Loki are kicked out of Bifrost, the magical bridge that allows them to travel between realms, and end up on Sakaar, a planet full of trash surrounded by portals to places across the realms. Thor is captured by a disgraced Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) and forced to fight in gladiator-like games for the pleasure of the Grand Master (Jeff Goldblum). The defending champion turns out to be Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), who crash-landed on Sakaar after the Battle of Sokovia two years prior. Thor convinces Valkyrie and Bruce Banner (the Hulk), with the help of Loki (Tom Hiddleston) to help him return home and defeat Hela. On Asgard, Hela easily killed many great heroes and took the throne, forcing the inhabitants into hiding. Thor and his team return and battle Hela, while trying to evacuate the Asgardian survivors to an off-planet location. Thor realizes that he doesn’t need to stop Ragnarok, but must help destroy Hela and in the process destroy their home world. Knowing that Asgard was never a place, but people.

Thor: Ragnarok was directed by Taika Waititi and is the seventeenth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and is part of phase three following Spider-Man: Homecoming and four years after the previous Thor film. Critical response was favorable, and the film earned $854 million worldwide. The overall tone of the film has changed to be more in keeping with the humor found in Guardians of the Galaxy.

The following is the opinion and thoughts of one reviewer only and should in no way be intended to make anyone feel bad for liking this movie. Where many reviewers praised the movie for its shift to a lighter tone and humor making it the best of the Thor movies, my personal feeling is that they ruined the character they established in previous Thor films and in the previous two avengers payments. This character, I like to call him “Bruh” Thor. I get that Chris Hemsworth has incredible comedic timing and talent, and it would be a shame not to use it, but after the success of the Guardians of the Galaxy comic, it felt like they were trying to turn Thor into a jester. Where he was once deep, with a serious nature but conflicted between love and duty to his people, Thor is now, superficial and playing for laughs. I loved the Thor that was originally created, but I don’t like what he became in this movie, which had a lot more of a “Buddy Cop” feel than the epic mythological presence he should have had. Additionally, the senseless killing of vital and beloved characters without giving the heroes a dignified end felt reckless and misguided. Chris Hemsworth’s performance as Thor in this film, while funny and well executed, changed the very nature of the character. The only way something like this works is if the audience sees the journey that influences and shapes the new character. This is not the case in Ragnarok. The very fiber of the character has been altered, and I don’t feel like it’s for the best. Oh! And they cut his hair!

In rewatching the film specifically for this article, I mentally prepared myself by detaching myself from the love I have for established characters and tried to watch it as an unrelated film. It was much nicer that way. Cate Blanchett was a wonderful Hela to me and steals the show, there was a dark spirit to her online deliveries, although her motivations aren’t too complex, she explores deep notions. The film has a darker theme which is explored through Hela even with the film’s lighter tone. Exposing the colonial bleaching of history to societies built on the blood of indigenous peoples. Odin hid the fact that Hela even existed and that much of Asgard’s wealth and freedom is due to bloodshed conquering the nine realms by force, not benevolence. There’s a wondrous scene where Hela pulls a beautiful mural of Odin and Thor’s benevolence from a ceiling in Asgard, to reveal a dark painting of Odin and Hela subjugating the nine realms.

The production value remains high for this film with a very stunning visual composition. The scenes follow each other rather well, and overall the plot is interesting. The music has also changed, and I don’t feel the best. It went from the classic pomp that is rightfully deserved for royalty to a more rock and roll vibe with an almost 90s vibe.


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