18 July 2016

THOR. (2011) REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS.




THOR. (2011) DIRECTED BY KENNETH BRANAGH. BASED ON THE MARVEL COMICS' CHARACTER CREATED BY STAN LEE. SCREENPLAY BY ASHLEY EDWARD MILLER, JACK STENTZ AND DON PAYNE. PRODUCTION COMPANY: MARVEL STUDIOS. DISTRIBUTION COMPANY: PARAMOUNT PICTURES.
STARRING CHRIS HEMSWORTH, NATALIE PORTMAN, STELLAN SKARSGARD, TOM HIDDLESTON, RENE RUSSO, ANTHONY HOPKINS, COLM FEORE, IDRIS ELBA AND KAT DENNINGS. REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

I normally hate super-hero movies, probably because I'm female and the only comics I read when I was growing up were the BUNTY and the MANDY and then, later on, SMASH HITS pop music magazine. 

In all honesty, I preferred to read about what DURAN DURAN ate for breakfast and if SPANDAU BALLET chose boxers over briefs rather than to follow the careers of super-heroes who just seemed to jump from skyscraper to skyscraper in the good old US of A while pounding the snot out of each other. Boring...!

I liked this film well enough, though. Not because of any deep-seated appreciation for the cult of the super-hero, however, but for another more earthy, less cerebral reason. As a long-time fan of Antipodean (that means Australian!) soap opera HOME AND AWAY, I was familiar with the work of Chris Hemsworth before he landed the rather plum role of Thor, the Nordic God of Thunder.

In other words, as Milhouse Van Houten of THE SIMPSONS said during Show And Tell in Edna Krabappel's class: 'I knew the dog before he came to school...!'

Yes, I remember Chris when he was Kim Hyde in HOME AND AWAY. He played one of the nice guys, the good guys, one of those guys who always tried to do the right thing, you know? That didn't stop the script from requiring him to whip his top off in nearly every episode, though, which was a blessing indeed for the female viewers as he was very, very buff indeed.

He was always stripping off to go surfing or just to doss around the caravan park in a broody fashion and his abdominals were something of a delight. He wore his jeans so low-slung that it was apt to set a lady's imagination a-flutter with all sorts of... well, imaginings of a carnal nature. Tee-hee. Watch me giggle like a schoolgirl at the memory. Well, I was a schoolgirl at the time...!

When I saw him as Thor, however, a good few years after I'd last seen him as Kim Hyde, I almost couldn't believe how much he'd bulked up, and he was pretty buff to begin with, as I may already have mentioned. He was bloody huge...!

Love interest Natalie Portman looked teensy in comparison, though the film-makers may have been fiddling around with different perspectives to make Thor look even bigger.

Nonetheless, he had the arms, chest and shoulders of a bear. An extremely handsome blonde-haired bearded bear, I might add. A bear who could nose and snuffle around my trash-can anytime. And yes, that's a metaphor, heh-heh-heh. I'm nothing if not appreciative of a fine male physique. Oh, and as we say here in Ireland, I'd dearly love a pull of his Hammer...!

Now, where was I? Oh yes. Having a prior interest in the delicious piece of eye-candy that is Chris Hemsworth made watching this super-hero borefest somewhat bearable. I even enjoyed it in places. I was bored to tears, however, during the bits on Asgard, the home of King Odin, Thor's Pops.

Odin is reluctantly engaging in a war against the Frost Giants to prevent them from seizing the Nine Realms, of which Earth would be the first on their hit-list. The old and frail Odin banishes his son Thor to Earth for sticking his rather attractive beak into matters of war which Odin thinks don't concern him.

This leaves Odin's sneaky adopted son Loki free to take over the throne of Asgard, which naturally belongs rightfully to Thor, the elder of the two sons. That leaves the way clear for a race against time, a thing without which no blockbuster would be complete.

Thor tries to find a portal back to Asgard in time to prevent Loki from betraying his adoptive father- and his adoptive home- to the Frost Giants, with whom Loki's learned he has an unbreakable connection. It's all pretty standard super-hero stuff, haha.

That's the lowdown as far as I could make it out. No doubt any expert on super-hero movies could do a better job...! I think I've done pretty well for a novice, though. 

As I said, I didn't care for the Asgardian fighting bits. I honestly couldn't have cared less whether the Frost Giants caught the snoozing Odin unawares or even whether they poked him in the eye-patch.

I much preferred watching Thor bumbling about on Earth, having to accustom himself to human food and clothing and customs, a lot like Jean-Claude Van Damme in the movie UNIVERSAL SOLDIER (1992). There's plenty of scope for humour there.

I liked the love story, though I would have liked to see it taken a little farther. Still, what are sequels for if not to tie up those kinds of loose ends? And I presume there is a sequel (or maybe a million sequels and even a prequel or two) for me to go and dig out now if I want to know what became of Thor and Jane, his prissy little scientist lady friend? Yeah, I thought so, haha.

By the way, I don't get all the mad excitement and buzz surrounding Tom Hiddleston's performance as the two-faced Loki. I found him to be as bland and tasteless as chips without salt and vinegar. And as for Sif and The so-called Warriors Three? The phrase 'spare pricks at an orgy' comes instantly to mind...!

There's no need to hunt me down and kill me though, all those Comic Book Guys out there who are foaming at the mouth right now at what they see as such an irreverent treatment of their precious blockbuster. I can assure you that this isn't a hatchet job. I quite enjoyed this film, even if it was for reasons that may differ slightly from your average super-hero fans' reasons.

Will I watch any sequels or prequels or companions to this film? Maybe, if Chris Hemsworth is in them. If he's not, well then, I'll put them in the 'Maybe' pile. And leave 'em there...!


AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.

Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, film blogger and movie reviewer. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, womens' fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra's books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO

 You can contact Sandra at:


http://sandrafirstruleoffilmclubharris.wordpress.com









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