For those who don’t know, this big budget comic book adaptation stars Chris Hemsworth as the eponymous Norse God, who is banished from the magickal sparkly space-island of Asgard by his father ‘Odin’ (Anthony Hopkins), when he arrogantly disobeys a direct order and pulls a “Dubya” (i.e., using the flimsiest of pretences to start a pointless war with people he doesn’t like). Stripped of his powers, Thor is unceremoniously dumped on Earth, where he is forced to rely on the kindness of strangers… specifically a trio of science-y types, played by Natalie Portman, Stellan Skarsgård and Kat Dennings, who witnessed his arrival but are sceptical of his claims to divinity.
Essentially this movie is a “game of two halves”, as they say in football parlance: On the one hand you have all the fantasy space-opera stuff, with “Ice Giants” invading Asgard, while Thor’s brother ‘Loki’ (Tom Hiddleston) manipulates everyone around him in a bid to claim the throne for himself… then on the other hand you have the earthbound rom-com shenanigans, with an impotent Thor learning to live humble while tentatively wooing Portman’s character. Personally, I much preferred the latter strand to the former, but I appreciate that’s a matter of personal taste… I’ve never read the long-running comic book this movie was based on, but I’m guessing that the (slightly cheesy) Space-Viking stuff was more in-keeping with the source material?
Regardless, I thought Portman and Dennings were both very winning here… working on slightly different comedic frequencies, but making for a pretty good double-act all the same.
SPOILER!!! / WEIRDLY SPECIFIC CRITICISM: I thought the editor cut away too quickly after Portman hits Thor with her van for the second time and delivers her line. Didn’t give the gag enough room to land.