“Thor: Ragnarok” Review 4/5 STARS

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Imprisoned on the other side of the universe, the mighty Thor (Chris Hemsworth) finds himself in a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits himself against the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), his former ally and fellow Avenger. In his quest for survival, Thor races against time to prevent the all-powerful Hela (Cate Blanchett) from destroying his home-world and the Asgardian civilization.

While being a big fan of the Marvel universe, I haven’t been so fond of Thor. The character has been fun to see in the Avenger movies, but his previous two films have been very….. meh. Aside from his insanely good looks, ripped body, and sense of humor, I truly believed this was an underwhelming franchise, that is, until now. Thor: Ragnarok does to the Thor franchise what Captain America Winter Solider did for Captain America… It brought a MUCH needed breath of fresh air by giving the lead role a whole new dimension to work with.

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The first thing that people will think while seeing this movie is OMG this shit is hysterical, and you have director Taika Waititi (What We do in the Shadows and the Hunt for the Wilderpeople) to thank for that. He brought an invigorated feeling that really did ooze life and excitement. On top of the constant humor that Waititi and writer Eric Pearson bring to this franchise’s third installment, the character development in this film far surpasses its predecessors.

Thor is the God of Thunder, right? Well my question is, where has that been in the previous films? Yes, with the help of his hammer, he has brought forth the power of thunder and lightning- but is he only powerful with his hammer? (Insert inappropriate joke here) Ragnarok builds the character as a whole, a man without this supposed source of power, that’s forced to discover who he truly is. This development not only was emotional, but it was comical and powerful all at the same time. It actually is when Thor discovers and harnesses the power that one has within himself, where this production takes off and immerses itself into “superhero greatness”.

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The action sequences were some of the best to date. Of course as time progresses, CGI will get better and better, but it was so much more than that. Remember in Avengers… when we got a taste of Hulk and Thor fighting one another? Well we got the full course here, ladies and gentlemen, and it was wildly entertaining to say the least. Speaking of Hulk, Ruffalo’s character had far more dialogue than I anticipated, which was welcoming and gave the green monster a bit more personality and likability. Blanchett as Hela AKA the Goddess of Death was precisely what this film needed as its villain. She is fantastic furthering the story, while countering the ferocity that Thor and Hulk posses with a sense of intrigue and wit.

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Marvel films as of late have been “Fun”; while not Oscar bait, they are certainly audience bait. After a decade of making men fly around in metal suits or tights, they finally have this machine finely tuned. Thor: Ragnarok was without question fun and that is all the audience, myself included, can really ask for. If I’m going to leave my comfy couch while putting my Stranger Things season two binge on hold, it better be worth it. Thankfully, in this case. Thor: Ragnarok was that and then some.

While still not the best Marvel film (Cap Am Winter Soldier and Ironman are still my favorite) this quiet possibly may be in my top 5.

4/5 STARS

Contributed by Nick Weninger

IG: @theaveragemanreview

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