Release Year: 2011
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Screenwriters: Ashley Miller (screenplay), Zack Stentz (screenplay), Don Payne (screenplay), J. Michael Straczynski (story), Mark Protosevich (story), Stan Lee (comic book), Larry Lieber (comic book), Jack Kirby (comic book), Nicole Perlman (script doctor – uncredited)
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston, Anthony Hopkins, Stellan Skarsgård, Kat Dennings, Clark Gregg, Colm Feore, Idris Elba, Ray Stevenson, Jaimi Alexander, Rene Russo, Tadanobu Asano, Josh Dallas, Jeremy Renner
The poweful, but arrogant god Thor is cast out of Asgard and banished to Earth. Here he learns the true values of a leader and becomes the greatest champion of his newfound friends.
Kenneth Branagh’s Thor was a film that could easily have gone awry. The concept of a blond-haired comic book thundergod inspired by the eponymous god in Norse mythology is a foreign one and the spectacular visual concept of Asgard and Jotunheim is a testament to that fact. The first half hour of the film is mostly a splendid and gorgeuously realised spectacle set in the home of the gods, Asgard, and the icy world of the frost giants, Jotunheim. After Thor’s banishment to Earth, the movie shifts gear and is from that point on anchored in human drama. There are brilliant moments of fish-out-of-water comedy and S.H.I.E.L.D. headed by Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) as well as Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) make memorable appearances. The budding romance between Thor and scientist Jane Forster (Natalie Portman) is sweet, and his quest to make himself worthy of the power that lies in his hammer Mjolnir is engaging and believable. The real breakout star, however, is Tom Hiddleston’s Loki. The sibling relationship between him and Thor is both complex and interesting, and Loki’s shadow looms so greatly over the film that it eventually spills into The Avengers (2012). Apart from a few scenes that feel off beat the film is all in all a succesful introduction to an important character in the Marvel universe and a great Blockbuster.
When Chris Hemsworth and Anthony Hopkins first saw each other in full costume, Hopkins remarked “God, there is no acting required here, is there?”.
Picture Copyright: UIP