Director: Taika Waititi
Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Cate Blanchett
Release Date: March 6, 2018
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 9/10
Disc Rating: 8/10
In Marvel Studios’ “Thor: Ragnarok,” Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is imprisoned on the other side of the universe without his mighty hammer and finds himself in a race against time to get back to Asgard to stop Ragnarok – the destruction of his home world and the end of Asgardian civilization – at the hands of an all-powerful new threat, the ruthless Hela (Cate Blanchett). But first he must survive a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger – the Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) – and grapple with his silver-tongued adopted brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston), the fierce warrior Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) and the eccentric Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum).
The latest entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to arrive home (and the second most recent overall after ‘Black Panther’ which is currently raking it in at the box office), ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ rejoins our favorite cocky hero Thor (Hemsworth) captured by an enemy. Upon his fiery escape, he soon finds himself on a mission to stop the legend of Ragnarok which could spell the end of his people and life as they know it if not stopped. Now, Thor, along with his brother Loki (Hiddleston) whom he believed dead (and some additional unexpected accomplices acquired along the way) must journey throughout unknown worlds and face no shortage of terrifying threats if they hope to stand any chance of making it back to Asgard in time to prevent its demise. And that’s assuming of course that they can defeat the unexpected power of the seemingly invincible Hela (Blanchett). Basically just another day in the life of a hero and god!
Directed this time around by Taika Waititi (What We Do in the Shadows, TV’s The Inbetweeners) from a screenplay written by Eric Pearson (TV’s Agent Carter), Craig Kyle (TV’s X-Men: Evolution) and Christopher L. Yost (Star Wars Rebels), Waititi does a magnificent job at the helm of ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ guiding the equally goofy and mesmerizing fun along with care. The film also owes a good chunk of credit to the well selected cast comprised of various new and returning individuals to the Marvel Cinematic Universe including Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Tom Hiddleston (Thor: The Dark World), Cate Blanchett (The Lord of the Rings), Mark Ruffalo (Avengers), Idris Elba (Thor: The Dark World), Jeff Goldblum (Jurassic Park), Karl Urban (Star Trek: Into Darkness), Tessa Thompson (TV’s Westworld), Anthony Hopkins (Thor), Benedict Cumberbatch (Doctor Strange) and more, nearly all providing amusing and more than capable performances in each of their respective roles.
‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is a slick, hilarious and action packed ride that couldn’t be more consistently fun. It repeatedly delivers a barrage of laughs, stunning visuals and jaw dropping action, all perfectly boosted by a classic rock and techno based soundtrack that excels the constant fun around every turn and nearly guarantees that any Marvel fan will have a grin plastered on their face throughout the majority of its runtime. ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is certainly one truly goofy movie, yet the almost slapstick style works surprisingly well and our hero’s trademark ignorance and silly comments, along with the all-out craziness in everything from the characters to their surrounding landscapes which molds together splendidly into one of the most flat out fun rides the Marvel Cinematic Universe has yet to offer. Swiftly guided along its spectacular course by director Taika Waititi whose capable guidance is only boosted by a highly capable cast of new and returning individuals to the massive Marvel Cinematic Universe, ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is definitely a winner and one that Marvel fans will likely want to repeatedly revisit down the road. Any fan of the Marvel film universe that didn’t have the chance to catch this one during its theatrical run definitely won’t dare to miss out on this incredibly entertaining ride, especially now that it’s available to watch in the comfort of your home.
Overall, ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is an out of this world adventure brimming with humor, style and plenty of eye popping action and visual effects to thoroughly please the fans. A far goofier and more expansive entry than the previous two ‘Thor’ films that isn’t afraid to get downright silly and have a great deal of fun with itself, while never disappointing in the other departments such as the dazzling fight sequences and unique, breathtaking scenery around every turn. ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is definitely highly recommended, at least for fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe who are sure to be blown away by this wildly enjoyable entry that is quite unlike the majority of its fellow Marvel movies, yet (at least for the most part) in the best way possible. It should have no trouble whatsoever proving itself more than worthy of your time and the cost of a rental at the absolute least for any fan of the ever expanding universe.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 2.40:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks fantastic as a whole and delivers a sharp, detailed and gloriously colorful presentation from start to finish, with no notable faults to be uncovered along the way. It holds up impressively even during the numerous fast moving and darkly lit sequences, never causing anything occurring on screen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a wonderful high definition video presentation that looks consistently great and should easily please the Marvel fans.
The Blu-ray release features a lossless 7.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This lossless multichannel soundtrack provides a clean, crisp and hard hitting audio presentation throughout. It constantly takes full advantage of all seven available channels in order to send the perfectly selected music, along with plenty of space-going and sci-fi action effects, crowd chatter, a number of explosions and plenty more throughout the various speakers with regularity, and always making certain that any dialogue or other audio elements that may be occurring simultaneously remain clean and fully audible. Overall, this is a solid and quite aggressive 7.1 channel DTS-HD MA soundtrack that contributes plenty of additional fun to the overall viewing experience.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ includes a number of enjoyable extras that fans should appreciate. Included on the release is an ‘Audio Commentary with Director Taika Waititi’, as well as an optional ‘Introduction to the Film’ by the director (running approximately 2 minutes in length). We are also treated a number of ‘Deleted Scenes’ from the movie (running approximately 7 minutes altogether), a fun ‘Gag Reel’ (approximately 2 minutes) and a collection of Behind the Scenes Featurettes that include interviews/comments with the cast and crew, plus behind the scenes footage and more. The included Featurettes are: ‘Getting In Touch With Your Inner Thor’ (approximately 7 minutes), ‘Unstoppable Women: Hela and Valkyrie’ (6 minutes), ‘Finding Korg’ (8 minutes), ‘Sakaar: On the Edge of the Known and Unknown’ (8 minutes) and ‘Journey into Mystery’ (6 minutes). Also included is the ‘”Team Darryl” Exclusive Short’ (approximately 6 minutes), 2 ‘8-Bit Sequences’ (approximately 1-2 minutes each) and a look back at the expansive world so far in ‘Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years – The Evolution of Heroes’ (approximately 5 minutes).