Thor: Ragnarok English Movie

Feature Film | 2017 | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
Thor: Ragnarok refuels the franchise with a smoothly clever tonal transition.
Nov 4, 2017 By Vighnesh Menon

In 2014, Marvel's Guardians of The Galaxy set the benchmark for how funny and frantic modern superhero movies can be. The studio's much-discussed yet- by its standards- underperforming Thor franchise seems to have learnt a lot of lessons from that calculated risk. 

Marvel wants you to forget what the two unflattering movies that preceded Thor: Ragnarok felt like. While they devotedly followed the dark and intricate mythos of the God of Thunder and his beloved planet, Asgard, Ragnarok has more in common with the erratic goofiness of GoTG. It is decidedly light-hearted and cheerful as an all-round makeover to the hitherto underachieving series as well, with the titular character's hair-cut and other significant transformations manifesting the same. 

The very talented New Zealand director Taika Waititi is in-charge of this paradigm shift in Thor's saga and fortunes. The monumental storyline of Ragnarok/Doomsday- which, on another day, with another director, could jeopardise the humour quotient- is a blessing in disguise for the quirky Waititi, who turns it into something philosophical. Even though the Marvel Cinematic Universe has, understandably and undeniably, had concerns dealing with the repeated high-stakes, world-threatening endings in its films, newer entries like Doctor Strange, Spiderman: Homecoming and now, Thor: Ragnarok have been able to come out of that shell, despite being formulaic, more or less.

Waititi, in addition, plays a comic relief in the form of a large but mild-mannered creature made out of rock, Korg. We also see a second comic relief in none other than The Incredible Hulk(Mark Ruffalo). This time, the raging beast is reduced to a cry baby, for better or worse. The laughs come from nearly every major character, including the villain, but these two have a major share in them. Yet, the real star of the show, needless to say, is Thor(Chris Hemsworth) himself, who for the first time, likes to take things easy and doesn't mind being the laughingstock. His sense of humour has also become more worldly than otherworldly, thanks to how acquainted he is with planet Earth and the audience there by now. 

That said, MCU's love story with power-hungry supervillains never seems to end. This time it is Hela(Cate Blanchett), the Goddess of Death. Of course, 'death' is only in the name, since the only true act of nonchalant cruelty comes when she participates in one-woman warfare with her adversaries. But, Blanchet herself leaves no stone unturned with some measured theatrics and Gothic hideousness. Meanwhile, the universe only gets more and more incomprehensible and impersonal, ahead of the climactic Avengers: Infinity war and its follow-up. 

Waititi may have saved the Thor franchise from its cinematic doom, but does so with the possibility of collateral damage for the ones who pick up the pieces from here. 

Vighnesh Menon