- Reviewed by: 00Dylan
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Current Rating 9.5/10 | 2 Votes
I've been interested in superheroes my entire life, possibly more so in my adult life than my childhood. I read a wide variety of comics and have an eclectic mix of favorites. However, one superhero that never really took ahold of me was Thor. It's a bit odd, considering that I'm a fan of Norse Mythology, so you'd think I'd be a major Thor enthusiast. For reasons unknown, I was not. I am now.
Thor is all about striking a balance and in this it succeeds beautifully. The man believes himself to be a Norse God (and really, who are we to say he's not), and yet he inhabits the Marvel universe with the likes of Captain America, Iron Man, The Hulk, and several other well known heroes. He lives in the realm of Asgard, located somewhere beyond the stars, and travels along something called the "rainbow road." Thankfully in the film it's referred to as the "bifrost," but my point remains all the same. The fantasy world that Thor inhabits is in stark contrast to the far more toned-down Marvel universe. So how does the film avoid this potentially jarring conflict? Balance.
Despite all the talk of Gods and realms, Thor sits lovingly in the middle of fantasy and science fiction. The system that Thor and his fellow Asgardians use to travel to and from realms seems like magic, but in all likelihood has more to do with black holes than hocus pocus. At one point in the film, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) even tells Jane (Natalie Portman) that, in Asgard, science and magic are one in the same. The film manages bring everything down to Earth (literally), while still maintaining that sense of wonder and astonishment.
And then there's the balance between Thor the human and Thor the God of Thunder. Early on in the film, Odin (Anthony Hopkins) strips Thor of his power and exiles him to Earth. Here he lives as a mortal, as he painfully discovers. A large portion of the film takes place outside of the awe and wonder and powers, but it stops just short of growing tiresome. When you're ready for action, action is delivered.
The casting is fantastic. You have acting heavyweights like Anthony Hopkins and Stellan Skarsgard lending the film credibility while younger talent like Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston (Loki) steal the show. And then you have Idris Elba as Heimdall, a casting that caused much controversy. Certainly a black man can't play a white Nordic God? He can and he did, with Elba bringing his immense talent to the role and giving Heimdall the presence that he requires to guard the bifrost.
And then there's the balance between being its own complete film and also a precursor to the upcoming Avengers film. Another balance struck beautifully, Thor is a solid, magical piece of entertainment that stands on its own, but definitely leaves you wanting more.
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