Thor: Ragnarok presents a beautiful homage to 1970s Sci Fi epics mashed together with 1980’s video games. There is always something happening, and that something is always brightly colored and fast moving. From the opening, showing Thor chained in a basket and recounting how he got there, to the glorious final showdown with Hela, the visuals are carefully over-saturated and riveting.
This review is going to be spoiler-free, but if you haven’t seen the trailers for the film yet, you should probably stop reading.
The trailers make it known that Thor reunites with his friend The Hulk in an arena on Sakaar. There is a glorious battle, with the friends pitted against one another. But without Mjolnir, Thor doesn’t seem to have the upper hand this time in the fight.
And back in Asgard, Hela is wreaking havoc. Hela, the Goddess of Death, is bent on destroying Asgard. Played for this film by Cate Blanchett, who often wears a magnificent headdress reminiscent of stag horns, Hela has some deep secrets that aren’t revealed in the trailers, but for those who have read the comic books, they’re not nearly as surprising as they will be to newcomers.
Odin, Heimdal, and Valkyrie are all shown on the posters, but it’s not entirely clear what roles they play in the film from the trailers. And because of spoilers, I’m not telling where they belong either. But know that they are essential to the plot, and are played brilliantly by the actors.
The music in Thor:Ragnarok – a mix of classic and electronic
The film was scored by Mark Mothersbaugh, of DEVO fame, and also known for his work in countless other films, TV series, and video games. It’s an eclectic mix of songs used, the most prominently shown in the trailers being “The Immigrant Song” by Led Zepplin. But Mothersbaugh’s influence is most noticeable in the instrumental score, with his distinctive use of synthesizers translated into orchestral performances.
Thor: Ragnarok thrilled me. I think it’s the best of the three Thor films we’ve seen, it’s more fun, less gritty, brighter, more visually chaotic. Musically I think it’s superior as well. None of the performances feel stilted, or like the actors were reaching for something they didn’t quite have. It was fantastic, and I’m sure I’ll be going at least one more time, to try to catch some of the Easter eggs I missed the first time.