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4.4 out of 5 stars
Thor: The Dark World [DVD] [2013]
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
I'm still trying to catch up on movies I missed in the theater in 2013. One of those was Thor: The Dark World, so when I saw a friend had bought it, I snagged it right away. (Yeah, I watched it that week and returned it.)

The story picks up after TheAvengers. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is busy fighting across all the realms to keep any dark and powerful forces at bay. As a result, he is being treated as a hero and his father Odin (Anthony Hopkins) thinks that he might be ready to become king.

The one thing holding him back is Jane Foster (Natalie Portman). He loved this mortal woman, much to Odin's dismay. However, she has just stumbled on an anomaly in London that could kill her. Even worse, it means the Dark Elves, a race that had supposedly been defeated a millennia ago, want her to drain this anomaly from her and use it to take over the nine realms.

I have noticed some issues with superhero movies. The first one is always an origin story, and it slows the movie down while we wait for the hero to gain their powers and come to terms with it. Then, in the sequel, they have to up the stakes by giving us two villains. I actually have to respect this movie because it doesn't try to do that. Instead, it just tells us the next chapter of the story with the next villain. Okay, so you could argue there is an army, but they act as one, therefore one villain.

This allows time for some character development, which I felt was a strong point of the film. Through the action, we got to know many of these characters better, which made us care about the outcome.

However, I must admit I was disappointed with Jane in this movie. Yes, the love interest is pretty much there just to get in trouble and provide motivation for the hero. However, I felt her character was weak and worse than normal. Definitely wish she had played a bigger role before the climax.

On the other hand, there's Tom Hiddleston's Loki. The character is so rich and troubled, you can't help but sympathize with him even though he's the villain. Yes, I do love to hate him.

The acting by everyone is wonderful no matter how big or small a part they play in the overall film. As a Chuck fan, I have to give a special shout out to Zachary Levi who took over the Fandral role since Josh Dallas was tied up with Once Upon a Time. (An interesting bit of trivia, Zachary was the first choice for the character in the first movie, but he couldn't do it because of Chuck. Full circle and all that.)

Likewise, the special effects are wonderful. While I wouldn't expect anything less from a movie of this magnitude, I wasn't disappointed.

Which brings us to my other minor complaint about the film, the climax. Yes, the final battle has to be epic, but here I felt like it was a bit too frenzied with too much going on. As a result, I also felt like it went on a tad to long. I'm being nitpicky here, I realize, but that is how I felt.

Overall, Thor: The Dark World was a fun sequel that was well worth watching, and one that extends the Marvel Universe. I'm enjoying watching this universe expand with each film.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
With phase two rumbling on Thor was the last one on the list for me to catch. The first one was a great fish out of water action film and instantly elevated Thor from the "whose that?" to a headline Avenger! Unfortunately Thor The Dark World drops the ball somewhat and as a result ends up being the weakest of phase two.

It is not a bad film, it's just disappointing! The action is beefed up and the effects are superb but the whole story and point of this film just fills like filler until the next Avengers film. More of a contractual obligation rather than a step forward in a character arc.

This time round we are very much set within the realms of Asgard. We see more of Thor's homeland and the nine realms that he helps keep at peace. Directed by Alan Taylor of Game Of Thrones fame you can see the scale in the battle scenes being ramped up to all sorts of fantasy levels. There are large scale battles with soldiers and trolls and all sorts of big ugly bad guys.

Jane and Thor's relationship is still as fragmented as it was before and to be brutally honest Jane is one of the most boring of the female leads in the Marvel universe. The only relationship worth watching is Thor and Loki who once again spark when they share screen time together.

However the main downside to Thor is a common one with Marvel. The villain of the piece is very weak. Once again we have a masked warrior seeking revenge and an object that will give them all consuming power etc etc. There is no charisma from this dark elf and at no point does it feel like he poses a real threat. This is something that needs serious addressing within the offices of Marvel.

So here's hoping that Age of Ultron will bring Thor back to where he belongs. Giving him something meaningful to do and something that will interest the audience.

Not a bad film but a case of dropped ball on this one.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 5 June 2014
The first film was good fun. This one has a very weak script, overly dramatic lighting and absurdly over the top cgi. It gets boring quickly and there's not enough in the story or the characters to hold your attention. I can see that someone who likes a lot of noise, flashy effects and God-like fighting will enjoy this but for anyone hoping for more than a poor copy of an awful video game it's a complete waste of precious time.
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94 of 111 people found the following review helpful
on 13 January 2014
After the life-changing The Avengers, every nerd worth their salt has been dying to know What Thor Did Next. (A reality show HAS to be in the pipeline, right? Like a Real Housewives of Asgard thing, with wonderful asides of Loki judging everybody and... okay, getting off track here.) Iron Man 3 didn't give us any clues what our favourite burly demi-god has been up to, and here we learn why: he hasn't had time to pop by Earth just yet, as he's been busy restoring peace all over the universe. Seems a good excuse to me, mate, but I'm not sure Jane will take it so well!

Befitting director Alan Taylor's Game of Thrones heritage, this time we come to a darker, grimier Asgard. Gone is the shiny, futuristic gadgetry of Branagh's Thor; instead, everything starts falling apart around out ears five minutes in. There are tears in this film, and real losses that change characters forever. The first film was a fish-out of-water tale; Thor was an arrogant boy who needed to grow up and fall in love. Here, he's been there, done that and bought the T-Shirt: this time, he means business, and he's taking everything seriously with a much more mature head on his shoulders, and to Hemsworth's credit, he delivers this as effortlessly as he did the buffoonishness of the character in the predecessor. But it's Hiddleston who's the real treat. He has been excellent in both Thor and The Avengers, but he surpasses himself here. This film really delves into Loki's powers as the god of mischief (watch out for a particularly hilarious, blink-and-you'll-miss-it scene where he transforms into somebody familiar...) and makes a real meal out of his trickiness. And oh, what a delicious meal it is! His murky past, unclear loyalties and surprise alliances are riveting to watch. This may be Thor's movie, but Loki is arguably the breakout character. In fairness, there are no weak performances here. There's a new minor character, 'my intern's intern,' as Jane puts it, who seems a bit redundant, but even he is part of one of the film's funniest scenes, so we'll let him off.

A particularly amusing part of any Marvel movie for me is watching fellow audience members when the credits begin. The committed amongst us are easily spotted; we are the ones who don't move a muscle. While casual fans reach for their coats as soon as the first name flashes up, the rest of us hang on until the bitter end to get a glimpse of what's coming. Here, we're treated to a clip from upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy; but then, we're lucky enough to have another scene, giving us a brief glimpse of Thor again.

My grievances with this film are slight, but here they are. The first was that there seemed to be some kind of aborted subplot expanding on Thor's relationship with Sif. In interviews, I read that her role was to be greatly expanded, and there was even going to be a kind of love triangle between she, Thor and Jane, but this obviously didn't get past the cutting room floor, although hints of it remain intact in places. It's a shame, as I would have happily sat still for twenty minutes extra to get a bit more character development. The second was similar in theme; I wish that antagonist Malekith's motivations had been expanded on a little more. Marvel are usually excellent at making their villains real people with motivations, even with good intentions that became warped; but here, he's a little 2D in places, despite a marvellous effort from a barely recognisable Christopher Eccleston. Still, despite these minor annoyances, the vast majority of the film kept me utterly hooked.

Overall, Thor: The Dark World is a wonderful installment in the ongoing Marvel franchise, and certainly enough to keep me going until the release of Captain America: Winter Soldier in April! And did I mention that I really love Loki? Yes? Okay then...
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I’ve always believed that if you are going to see a film, you should never go in with any preconceived ideas of whether it will be good or bad. In reality, this is nearly impossible, because why would you decide to watch a film in the first place, if you were not sure whether it would be worth your time and money? I do not think of myself as a film critic, but I do think it is my duty to try and get to the essence of film reviews; that being is it going to be worth my time and money or not?

The reason I talk about pre-conceived ideas of films, is because there are very few positive things I had read about Thor: The Dark World before seeing it last night. I even saw it recently on one film reviewer’s list as the worst entry into the Marvel Cinematic Universe so far.

Thor: The Dark World is the next entry into the MCU (Phase 2) after Iron Man 3 (not a bad film either) and is a thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining picture. I was watching the film at home on 3D Blu-Ray, and the first thing that struck me was how beautiful the film is. The land of Asgard and the other mythical realms represented in the movie simply look gorgeous. This is one of the advantages again I believe of 3D films (as argued here) is that they can involve you far more within the film. I wanted to fly around Asgard in one of their spaceships all day! Ok, urban London (also represented) does not match the beauty of Asgard but you can’t expect every scene to be a landscape painting.

Regarding the film itself, I’m struggling to find what must have been so unappealing to the hardened film critics. That’s not to say I wasn’t concerned, because at one point (probably about 30-40 minutes in) I was starting to wonder where this film is going. But that brief moment of doubt was quickly extinguished by the wonderful characters, the sense of drama, the sheer ‘epic-ness’ of the film, and as mentioned, the beautiful worlds represented within it.

The first Thor film was one of my favourite entries of Phase 1 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and is indeed one of the more darker films that Marvel produce. As you can tell by the name, Thor: The Dark World is very gloomy in parts, yet surprised me with it’s sense of humour. There are more than a few laugh out loud moments, one of the most memorable being Stan Lee’s cameo (I won’t spoil the joke!). Chris Hemsworth is once again on top form as the hammer-wielding superhero, and plays the role with balanced amounts of tension, sadness and humour. Tom Hiddlestone also returns in his role as undeniably the greatest villain in the MCU, Thor’s brother Loki. Whilst he has a smaller role, and is not the film’s central villain, he nevertheless pretty much steals every scene he appears in, with his villainous charm and witticisms at Thor’s expense. To add to this wonderful cast is the returning Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins and Rene Russo, among the most prominent names. Whilst a cast does not make a film, the performances do again make me wonder why this is regarded as a ‘poor’ film.

To add the balance therefore, my job is to assure you to go and enjoy Thor: The Dark World, and if you haven’t already seen it, I thoroughly recommend watching it on 3D Blu-Ray. It’s worth the extra money you pay. My random thoughts were that the first half of the film felt like The Phantom Menace (but in a good way) with it’s beautiful golden city, it’s premise of invasion, a floating burial scene, and of course Natalie Portman. With much of the film taking place in London, and it’s scientific (though of course fictional) theories, much of the 2nd part of the film felt like a Doctor Who episode. This of course is helped with the multiple switches between London and the nine realms in the second half of the film.

The rotten tomatoes film site gives an aggregate score of 65%. Personally, I would add another 10% to that. No it’s not the strongest film of the MCU, but as superhero movies go, it is still a thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining epic of a film. Most superhero movies would do very well to do better.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Another C,G,I Spectacle to behold.
With Lead cast : 'Chris Hemsworth' (Thor) 'Natalie Portman' (Jane Foster)
'Tom Hiddleston' (Loki) 'Anthony Hopkins' (Odin) and 'Christopher Eccleston'
(Malakith)
The Cosmos is in danger as rare alignment of the planets is about to come
about.
Ancient adversary 'Malakith' has re-emerged 'Thor' cannot combat the enemy
alone, he needs the help of his treacherous brother 'Loki' to save both 'Asgard'
and 'Planet Earth' where 'Jane Foster' lives, 'Jane' the woman 'Thor' loves.
Apparently 'Jane' possesses powers that the evil 'Malakith' will need to fulfil
his intent to destroy both worlds.
Can 'Thor's' brother 'Loki' be trusted. ?
This an Action-Packed visual and enjoyable spectacle in the 'Marvel' Super-Heroes
series.
Great Picture and Sound Quality Throughout both watching in either 3-D or 2-D
(May have to duck a few time with the 3-D version)
Special Features include :-
* Marvel one shot - All Hail the King.
* Featurette :- A Brother's Journey - 'Thor' and 'Loki'
* Featurette :- Scoring Thor :- The Dark World with 'Bryan Tyler'
* Deleted and Extended Scenes.
* Gag Reel.
* Audio Commentary...
Plus Much More....
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on 3 September 2014
So this completed the best movies I saw in 2013. Thor: The Dark World was an extremely satisfying follow up to the original Thor movie and the Avengers.Thor returns back to Asgard after the events of the alien invasion of New York with the Avengers against Loki. Thor is later reacquainted with the woman he loves, Jane Foster after she is infected with a power source that Malekith, leader of the Dark Elves wants possession of. Malekith has reawoken from his slumber in accordance with the time period that he can unleash the power source in order to turn the universe back to it's original state of eternal darkness. In a attempt to defeat Malekith and the Dark Elves Thor has to trust and form an allegiance with his untrustworthy adoptive brother Loki. I loved the first Thor film, the escapism into a beautiful captivating new world of Asgard, which in a new turn most of the story takes place in. It was a great film full of great action and emotional moments. The first movie in four years that my girlfriend burst into tears at. I loved it and it is one of my favorite movies of 2013.

Check out my Blog http://supercomicsmovieblog.blogspot.ie/
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on 6 August 2014
This film arrived with a lot of expectation from me, i very much enjoyed the first film, but with a new director could this be built upon?
On the whole the answer is yes, this feels like a much more epic adventure, bolder and bigger in scale than the first film. The cast are good as a whole, and the minor charactors are still stealing every scene they are in. My problems with the film are the same as everyone elses, Malekith the dark elf is tragically underused as the main protagonist, with no motivation of depth. Relying on Loki again after the Avengers shows a lack of confidence in the world for me, it is time to rest him for awhile before he loses his impact.
The humour does at times seem misplaced, there are great one liners and sight gags at times, but at others it just seems a bit over the top and misjudged.
Overall although these affect the film i still enjoyed it immensely and will happily watch it again.
The Extras on this DVD are disappointing to say the least, but that is often the way now for DVD releases.
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on 5 April 2014
A brilliant continuation of the machinations of Asgard and its saviour.

Thor The Dark World does a fantastic job of bringing us up to date with Thor after his valiant efforts to aid the Avengers in saving the people of Midgard.
The banter between Thor and Loki is worth the price of the DVD/Blu Ray alone, but the great story, soundtrack (Thank You Brian Tyler) and snappy pace will keep you coming back for repeat views.

As with any Marvel film make sure you watch the mid and post credits "button" scenes for a little extra from the Studio that rewards its fans for having the patience to take 5 minutes and sit through the credits. I can't understand people who get up and leave the second a film finishes, or even worse start checking their phone and ruining the cinematic experience for everyone else.
Oops rant over.

This is a great film that should be on any self respecting Marvel or Film fan's shelf.
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on 11 March 2014
As with Iron Man 3 the plot is fairly strong but fails in execution. The trailer had me slightly worried as the line about the elves being 'an evil from before time' of whatever it was came across as totally generic and naff. But it turns out they are just evil elves from a different dimension out for revenge. Pretty straightforward plot devise. Not exciting but not annoying either. Well, within the context of super hero movies.

The humour is slightly too much but it does not grate anywhere near as much as it did in Iron Man 3. Marvel has done well in terms of being faithful to the original characters and that continues here. Unfortunately it is starting to feel like they are churning out movie after movie not because they want to tell a story but because they want the franchise to continue. We shall see. Looks like the humour angle will continue in Guardians of the Galaxy, but it might be appropriate for that movie. Trailer seemed ok.
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