Review of the movie Thor

Published by Arathald in the blog Arathald's blog. Views: 138

I just saw Thor in theaters, and, honestly, I thought that the writing sucked. Here's why, followed by a redeeming point or two. I tried to avoid spoilers, so forgive some of the more vague language.

The 30ish-minute beginning sequence was great, except that it was all a flashback after what I thought was an unnecessary hook at the beginning. The whole time, I was wondering when we were going to get back to the story. Taking out the beginning hook and presenting the introduction as part of the story proper instead of the backstory would have made it much more enjoyable to me.

The method in which Thor got his hammer back (okay, it's obvious he's going to, so this isn't a spoiler) seemed a bit deux ex machina to me. By that I mean that the hammer suddenly had this new ability that it didn't posess before which allowed Thor to be physically reunited with it. The spell/blessing placed on the hammmer may have been worded in a way that made me think this a bit strange. One possible resolution would be to have the big fight scene occur in the direct vicinity of where the hammer is. As it stands, I think it was too easy for him to get it back (as soon as he was able to).

This was quickly followed by the S.H.I.E.L.D. operative acting in a completely unexpected way. I didn't remember all about S.H.I.E.L.D. from Iron Man 2, so this completely threw me for a loop. Apparently, if I had remembered Iron Man 2, this would have made perfect sense to me. Should this movie really rely on another movie that isn't even a prequel for it to make sense?

Right after this (yes, that's three in less than 10 minutes), some characters are able to get... back where they came from. The person who helps them do this has to overcome a very specific concrete obstacle to do this (see the movie, you'll see what I mean). Now, it makes sense that when he realizes that they need help, he tries to overcome the obstacle, and succeeds. The issue is that he begins trying to overcome that obstacle before he would have realized they need help. The end result is that he happens to overcome the obstacle at the exact right instant to help them. Huh? That came across to me as a deux ex machina type device (if not deux ex machina proper), or, at best, violating causality. There's no reason he can't wait until a few seconds later to begin overcoming the obstacle.

Lastly, the character of Loki. Loki being the god of deceit doesn't give the writers carte blanche to make him inconsistent or to have wildly varying motivations. A character can surprise the audience while still being self-consistent. Maybe if I had remembered who Loki was, I wouldn't have been so confused, but I'm not up on my Norse mythology, and some of his actions left me completely lost.

Now, the movie wasn't all bad. For what it's worth, I still found it rather entertaining. There was one part that stuck out to me as particularly well-done, however: the ending. I appreciated that Thor made a tough decision, and it does show that his character developed as the story progressed and that proving himself earlier was not a one-time event (which is something I had wondered if they were going to show). It was definitely more complex than a lot of the silly, predictable endings movies have nowadays.

I keep going back and forth between thinking I'm being way too picky and remembering how abruptly I was jolted out of the story. I feel like if I was unable to sustain my suspension of disbelief, there was something wrong with the writing. It's easy to blame such issues on the viewers/readers, and it's even easy for them to blame themselves for it, but when it comes down to it, shouldn't we consider that just maybe the writing was, at least in part, to blame for it? I think anything less betrays the arrogance that we sometimes have as writers, and the elitist attitude that tells us, "it's actually very good, but they're too stupid and uncultured to understand it."
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