Like many of the superhero movies released in theaters in recent years, Thor: Ragnarok begins with an epic fight sequence.
It’s been two years since Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and the rest of the Avengers defeated Ultron, and Thor has spent his time since exploring the realms in search of infinity stones. If you haven’t seen the last Avengers movie and/or don’t know anything about infinity stones, that’s fine. Neither of these things is integral to the plot here; they just set up a showdown between Thor and a fire demon named Surtur.
It makes for a lively opening sequence that predictably concludes with Thor beating the demon and his fire-based minions.
After that, Thor returns to Asgard, but it’s not anywhere near a joyous homecoming. Family secrets are revealed, and the very future of Asgard is at stake. But before Thor can do anything about it, he finds himself transported to the other side of the universe.
The latest installment in the Marvel universe is a thrilling ride, jam-packed with action, laughs and superheroes. Trailers have given away most of the film’s big cameos; there are appearances from Dr. Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), but the standout performances come from Jeff Goldblum, as the Grandmaster, and the film’s own director, Taika Waititi, as Korg. In fact, Korg’s lines are so hilarious and heartwarming, it will be a shame if the guy doesn’t make an appearance in upcoming Marvel films.
On trend, Thor: Ragnarok plays to 1980s nostalgia. When Thor is thrown to the other end of the universe, he finds himself on Sakaar, a literal garbage planet where wormholes drop trash from the sky. And if the planet’s fashion choices are any indication, one of those wormholes has brought the people of Sakaar plenty of Earth’s ’80s castoffs. Even the soundtrack has retro feel, complete with a track from Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory.
This is the best Thor-centric film in the Marvel universe yet, and hopefully it’s a sign of more to come.