Thor: Ragnarok

Apparently outer space in the Marvel cinematic universe is a very silly place. The two Guardians movies have been out and out comedies and now the third Thor movie, Thor Ragnarok is also a romp through the stars. The main reason for the comedic tone is the new director, Taika Waititi, who has a special sense of humor arising from outsized characters voicing mundane concerns, such as his vampires in What We Do in the Shadows arguing over whose turn it is to do the dishes. That’s the type of humor he brings to the movie.
As we discovered at the end of Thor The Dark World, Loki, played by Tom Hiddleston, has assumed the guise of Odin, played by Anthony Hopkins, and has taken over Asgard. Loki, however, doesn’t know all of Odin’s hidden secrets. It seems they have an older sister who is more powerful than both of them. Her name is Hela, played by Cate Blanchett and she’s the Goddess of Death. Hela has been kept in exile by Odin. When Odin dies, however, Hela is set loose and she means to claim the throne of Asgard and conquer the nine realms.
When Loki and Thor try to stop her, she destroys Thor’s hammer. They are both cast into deep space, winding up on the planet of Sakaar, which is at the nexus of several worm holes, so an immense amount of debris and a lot of disreputable people wind up there. A being named The Grandmaster, played by Jeff Goldblum, rules there and he runs gladiatorial games. Thor is kidnapped by Valkyrie, played by Tessa Thompson, a former elite warrior of Asgard, who has a history with Hela. She now has an arrangement with The Grandmaster. Thor’s first fight in the arena is surprisingly against the Hulk, played by Mark Ruffalo. Now they must find a way off Sakaar and return to an Asgard ruled by Hela.
But never mind the plot. You’re here for the laughs and there are plenty of them. Mostly it’s because of Waititi’s offbeat sense of humor. But another factor is that Hemsworth is so good at comedy. It’s not fair. A guy who looks that good shouldn’t be funny too.
The other performances are good, as well. Hiddleston’s Loki is definitive at this point; you don’t dare trust him but you can’t help but like him. Cate Blanchett can play anything. You might think she’s slumming in this but she’s obviously enjoying herself immensely. It’s fun to watch.
The effects, the sets, the costumes are all pretty much perfect. Marvel never drops the ball in the technical department.
In short, Thor: Ragnarok is a lot of fun.

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