I should give some background about my relationship with the movie Thor.
I love it very much. But my love for it may be tinged with a lot of lust for its leading man, and the (albeit hazy) memory of the first time I saw it.
It was a late night showing. I was two weeks from graduating college. I had been picked up from a bar crawl with a bunch of bio majors. (Chrissy brought me. I certainly was not a bio major. My inability to comprehend undergraduate levels of science was a big part of the reason I had to be in college for 5 years…) I remember thoroughly enjoying myself, and going to bed that night to have erm…pleasant dreams that night.
Anyway, I’ve also always said that I’ve never walked away from a MCU movie bored, and that holds true. These movies are an extreme amount of fun. The Dark World is still fun. It’s funny and quirky and epic.
And I didn’t love it.
I loved the individual elements, but they didn’t seem to quite gel. Chris Hemsworth is great, and like Robert Downey Jr. in Iron Man 3 did a very good job of telegraphing the changes in Thor since The Battle of New York. He’s more serious, a bit somber, and very distracted. Everyone around him notices it, but only Odin points it out. Also, Odin is all, “Forget about that earth girl, focus on being king and go marry and make babies with Sif. KTHANXBI.”
For her part, Sif seems not opposed to this outcome, but she also doesn’t seem overly invested in it either.
Jane hasn’t forgotten Thor’s promise to come back either, but she is on a rather pleasant lunch date with a Perfectly Nice Guy (I was SOO hoping that Jane would get a Perfectly Nice Guy, or A Baxter as they’re sometimes called.) in London when Darcy comes in and drags her out because some of their instruments are going nuts. As nuts as they did back in New Mexico! They call Erik, but he’s too busy running around Stonehenge in the buff saying that he has to save us all. (Loki left Dr. Selvig a little batty. If we find out in Captain America: The Winter Soldier that Hawkeye is also exhibiting such behavior, I will be thrilled.)
Anyway, there’s some hoo ha with some London Street children and portals and Thor winds up taking Jane to Asgard and the movie really kicks off.
The main plot, or I guess the un soap opera plot concerns Malekith and the Dark Elves wanting to bring the world back to darkness as it was when it began. Or something. I don’t know. Christopher Eccleston is a really good actor and all. But Malekith as villain was still swallowed up by the super nova that was Loki as Anti Hero.
My second favorite superhero movie (favorite is The Dark Knight Rises) is X2: X-Men United. I love when the good guys and the bad guys get together to take on the bigger threat. That happens here. Sort of.
Malekith’s plan involves The Aether a mystical sort of anti matter that behaves strangely like the extremis virus when it infects Jane. Searching for the Aether leads Malekith to Asgard, because that’s where Jane is. You know who else is in Asgard? Locked in a the dungeon? Loki.
Loki’s imprisonment is only half of his punishment. Odin has also banned his wife, and Loki’s mother Frigga from visiting. In fact it was only Frigga’s intercession that is keeping Loki alive. Thor and Odin would be happy to execute him. Frigga does use Asgardian Magic/Science to hologram into Loki’s cell and have angry conversations with him. She also gives him books. Anyway, while shielding Jane from Malekith Frigga is killed. This finally breaks her youngest son. Loki loses all of his bravado.
Thor has a plan to defeat Malekith, but Odin has put Asgard on lockdown, so he has to sneak out. Only one person knows how to do that. The brothers team up to avenge their mother and win the day.
Their are some major spoilers along the way, but during one of the fight scenes Loki cuts off Thor’s hand. Um, yeah.
Here’s what happened in my head. “Wait? They killed his Mommy and cut off his hand. IS SHE GOING TO DIE BEARING TWINS AND HE BECOME THE SECOND MOST EVIL BEING IN THE UNIVERSE? Did this just become Star Wars NT: If we made it less boring and the romantic leads had chemistry??”
Like I said, the movie was a lot fun. Zachary Levi (Squee!) took over as Fandral, and did a lovely job as a swashbuckler. My favorite scene involved Loki and Thor walking down a hallway and Loki taking on different forms. First he becomes a random guard. Then he becomes Thor and turns Thor into Sif. Then he turns himself into Captain America. This brilliant little cameo by Chris Evans made me so happy. He bounced down the hall and delivered the following speech:
“I can feel the righteousness flowing through me veins! I even like the costume, although it is rather tight! Do you want to have a conversation about truth, honor, patriotism?”
Then Thor punches him in the face. I kind of loved it because I feel like it gave you a sense of the relationship between Thor and Loki before Loki’s power grab, and my guess is Thor wanted punch Steve a time or two.
There’s a twist ending that I like, and the post credit scenes (There were two! TWO!) set up a long game for the MCU. The first, Sif and Volstag drop off the Aether with The Collector, who accepts it, wondering why they aren’t keeping it themselves. They insist that keeping “two infinity stones” together (Aether and Tesseract) would be a bad plan. The Collector agrees and gleefully says, “One down, five to go.”
So while phase 1 appeared to be about the tesseract, phase 2 appears to be about The Infinity Gems.
That’s a long game to play, but I’m psyched. First of all because the appearance of The Collector establishes the kind of goofy out there tone that Guardians of The Galaxy should and will probably have. Second of all because it teases Thanos in a big way and I was let down that it was teased and forgotten about for Avengers: Age of Ultron.
The second showed Thor crashing breakfast with Jane, Darcy, Erik and their new friend Ian. Thor and Jane make out. All is right with the world.
The women in this movie kick ass. Rene Russo leads the pack as Frigga. She’s only in the first half but she’s incredible. Natalie Portman continues to not annoy me as Jane. This is a huge coup for this character because I find Natalie Portman endlessly annoying. Kat Dennings was sarcastic and adorable. Jaimie Alexander was fantastic and should play Wonder Woman.
Sorry did I say should? JAIMIE ALEXANDER HAS TO PLAY WONDER WOMAN SOMEONE MAKE THIS HAPPEN IMMEDIATELY THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
It’s so clear how much Tom Hiddleston and Chris Hemsworth love playing these characters. The joy in their performances make these movies better.
Darcy tried to call S.H.I.E.L.D. to report Jane’s disappearance. I want a Darcy/Skye scene where they make sarcastic comments about everyone else. We could call it “Two MCU Girls.”
Stan Lee as a mental patient who’s shoe Selvig steals.
Catching Fire looks better the more I see of it. Can’t wait for this.
Am I the only person who thinks that while the premise for Delivery Man is awful, the movie itself looks straight up adorable? Yes? No? Just me then?
X-Men: Days of Future Past trailer made me cry. AGAIN. I’ve now seen it 3 times. I have cried every time. It’s incredibly well done.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier. I’ve talked about this, but I’m incredibly excited. Things that I’m excited about besides what I’ve already said: Robert Redford. The man who if I had a time machine to pick the right actors at the right ages to play superheroes I would give the role of Captain America to. (Circa The Sting) Anthony Mackie as The Falcon. I love Mackie. I love pretty much everyone who was involved in 8 Mile.
Rankings (Movie season is speeding to a close friends. I’m ending with Catching Fire and that’s next week!)
1. Pacific Rim
2. Runner, Runner
3. The Great Gatsby
4. The World’s End
6. Kick Ass 2
7. The Butler
8. Man of Steel
9. Don Jon
10. The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones
11. The Wolverine
12. Thor: The Dark World
13. Iron Man 3
14. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters
15. Despicable Me 2
16. Star Trek Into Darkness
18. Monster’s University
19. After Earth