Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Review 219: "Thor: The Dark World"

"Myul Nyua!"

This Time, It's Elves

      Thor: The Dark World is the 2013 sequel to 2011's Thor and 2012's The Avengers. It's the eighth overall Marvel Studios film and the second in Phase Two. It's directed by Alan Taylor (Game of Thrones) and written by Christopher Yost (Marvel Animated Series), Christopher Markus (Captain America: The First Avenger) and Stephen McFeely (The Narnia Films). It's follows Thor (Chris Hemsworth) as he returns to Earth after discovering that his love Jane (Natalie Portman) has become infected with an ancient artifact that has awoke the Dark Elves and their leader Malekith (Christopher Eccleston) who want to take over the Nine Realms. Against the will of his father, Odin (Anthony Hopkins) and with the help of friends Sif (Jaimie Alexander), Fandral (Zachary Levi) and Volstagg (Ray Stevenson), Thor takes his villainous brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) in order to stop Malekith, save Jane and the Nine Realms and continue all around awesomeness.

"Ha ha, no this isn't Star Wars. Get out!"
Captain Hammer

      It this point, it's hard to even imagine the next Marvel movie being any bad. Seven movies in and only two that are, at worst, only pretty good (The Incredible Hulk and Iron Man 2, if you were wondering) and Marvel's track record remain strong and unbroken with movie number eight Thor: The Dark World. IS it better than Thor? Yes. Is it better than Iron Man 3? No. In fact, this is a fairly straight forward movie. Now, granted, straight forward for Marvel is still really good, but as fun as the new movie is, it can hide a lack of anything really new here. The sequel does understand the whole "Bigger and Better" part of the sequel code but seems to have forgotten about the riskier part. Now, don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed Thor: The Dark World. This time around, seeing more of the Nine Realms was fun and the action was far more entertaining this time around. The movie continued the comic book fun of the Marvel films and left me wanting another return of the Son of Odin. But, I really can't deny that it played it safe.

The Mildly-Unlit World

      There's not a whole lot that happens in Thor: The Dark World that will surprise a lot of people. Sure, a few after-credits scenes and a cameo here or there are nice little treats, but story-wise, the film never takes the same risks that even Iron Man 2 did a little bit. It's especially frustrating, seeing as how the set-ups are there, but the pay-offs seem to have been thrown away for the fun, but overly-long action scenes. Thor and Odin fight... and that goes nowhere. Sif gets jealous of Jane... and that goes nowhere. A character commits treason... and is never seen again. It's not so much that this is a bad movie. It's really good, but a better movie seems to be in here somewhere. One with more character development, a few more twists and a villains more interesting than just lead bad elf and maybe evil Loki. Overall, I get the sense I won't remember this one as much as I do the others, even if I had a great time watching it.

He's reading 50 Shades of Grey. 
And so comes the fan fic.
The Verdict

      At this point you're either not interested in the Marvel movies (Though I don't know how) or you are going to see every movie no matter what, so it does help that Thor: The Dark World is a fun, exciting return to the world of Asgard. The action is better, the story is more epic and the movie is just as funny and entertaining as the Marvel films seem to always be. Though, it must be said that the whole thing does feel a bit safe, almost like a better film was left on the cutting room floor. It's definitely worth more than just a look, even if it isn't one of Marvel's best.. Thor: The Dark World gets 5 stars out of 6. 

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