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30 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thor comes down to Earth
For the uninitiated, that's the Thor. God of thunder from the Norse pantheon. Son of Odin. And in comics oft sent to Earth to learn humility in a human alter ego and occasionally do battle with duplicitious sibling Loki.

And be a member of superhero team the Avengers.

As we'll see next year...

In the meantime, Thor, like Iron Man did three...
Published on 28 Oct 2011 by Paul Tapner

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars Looks like a Hallmark Pilot
Poor put upon Odin (Anthony Hopkins) King of Asgard, must now pass the throne to one of his two sons, Thor (Chris Hemsworth), or Loki (Tom Hiddleston). However they must both show that they are worthy and capable. Will Thor change his arrogant ways? Is Loki everybody's friend or a sneaky leader of a cabal?

Let's watch the story as it unfolds.

I have...
Published on 8 Jan 2012 by bernie


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30 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thor comes down to Earth, 28 Oct 2011
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Thor [DVD] (DVD)
For the uninitiated, that's the Thor. God of thunder from the Norse pantheon. Son of Odin. And in comics oft sent to Earth to learn humility in a human alter ego and occasionally do battle with duplicitious sibling Loki.

And be a member of superhero team the Avengers.

As we'll see next year...

In the meantime, Thor, like Iron Man did three years ago, takes the character and gives him an origin movie.

Director Kenneth Branagh tackles the problem of how to mix Norse gods and real world on screen by remembering Clarke's first law: Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. Thus the norse gods living in Asgard here are basically super advanced aliens who once came to Earth long ago to do battle with the Frost Giants - nasty and not quite so advanced aliens - when they attacked tenth century Norway.

Their worlds are connected by a shimmering bridge which is guarded by a gatekeeper. A bridge that in our technology might also be referred to as a stargate or a wormhole.

But that's all exposition we get after a brief opening when astrophysicist Jane Foster and two friends are investigating strange readings in the sky and promptly knock down a man who comes out of nowhere.

Jumping back to the exposition shows that this is Thor. And that he and his brother Loki were raised by father Odin who hasn't been to war since he beat the frost giants. And that Thor is a bit more impetuous and up for a fight than Loki is.

When the opportunity for that comes going against his fathers wishes seem him banished to Earth, and his hammer Mjolnir dropped into the desert [what you saw in that post credits scene in Iron Man Two].

Can Jane and her friends help Thor in his quest to get home?

Is Loki up to no good? [yes but not just for the sake of it. He is given some very believable motivation]

And what are SHIELD up to?

As three worlds collide, people's lives will change forever.

The exposition is involving but once you get past it and into the character drama this does rather click, thanks to the efforts of a pretty good cast.

Natalie Portman does very well with the role of Jane, turning what could have been a rather thankless part into something decent, and stopping Kat Dennings as her friend Darcy from running away with all the attention, as looks might happen early on.

Tom Hiddleston has just the right voice to play a trickster god, and his Loki is a subtle and dangerous villain.

For a wise old king, you can't do much better than Anthony Hopkins, and he thus makes Odin a memorable turn. Despite the plot rather limiting his screen time for a lot of it.

Chris Hemsworth - best known for his brief appearance in Star Trek as Kirk's doomed father - takes the lead role and does make the most of it. Handling both fish out of water comedy and battle scenes with equal aplomb.

And Idris Elba makes the gatekeeper of Asgard into an appealing individual with a nice sense of honour and loyalty.

Mixing the character moments with fight scenes it does use it's budget judiciously - you never see too many people in asgard and most of the action takes place either in the desert or in a sall town - but that doesn't really seem to matter too much.

As a franchise opener it's a fine introduction to the character. Although it does have a rather open ended conclusion the end credits assure us, in a way they haven't done in movies since older Bonds, that Thor will return. And he will. But more on that later.

Whereas Iron Man two attracted some criticism as being a trailer for the avengers this avoids that - despite the end assurance that thor will be in it - but for those who know their marvel comices:

Watch out for cameos from two former Thor writers. Stan Lee of course, but also another more recent one.

Listen for references to a scientist and a billionaire.

Watch for a sniper who appears in one single scene and has a certain weapon of choice.

And as ever stay till the very end of the credits for an extra scene, that gives some indication of what will happen in the avengers movie. Which on this basis of this, could be quite a big scale event.

The dvd has the following language and subtitle options:

Languages: English, Hindi.

Subtitles: English, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Hindi, Norwegian, Swedish.

The disc begins with a few trailers that you can skip over by using the next button on the dvd remote.

The only special features are:

A commentary from the director.

Four deleted scenes. These run from ninety seconds to two minutes each [approx] and can be watched all in a row or one at a time. Either with or without a commentary on them from the director. They're all quite good little characters moments.

There's also a short promotional piece for the aforementioned Avengers movie. Mostly clips from the introductory movies for each character, coupled with footage from the 2010 San Diego Comic Con appearances of the actors to promote the film. And a few short clips involving writer/director Joss Whedon. Epileptics beware some flashing images in the middle of all this. It runs for a mere two minutes.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pride comes before a fall, 11 Oct 2011
By 
Jules (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Thor [DVD] (DVD)
The film follows the myth/legend of Thor from the Marvel comics, who is played by, and if i might say with a very Heath Ledger like performance by Chris Hemsworth who does well for his first major lead role. Along with his brother Loki (Hiddleston) as the sons of the ageing King Odin (Hopkins) who has to decide which of them is to become his successor to the throne of Asgard. But after Thor & his trusty group of warriors set out against the will of Odin to confront past rival, King Laufey (Feore), things don't go to plan, and culminate with Odin stripping Thor of his hammer/powers & banishing him to Earth as a humble human, until he learns to change his ways & learn the consequences of his actions. On Earth he literally bumps into scientist Jane Foster (Portman), and her group, Erik Selvig (Skarsgård) & Darcy Lewis (Kat Dennings -Thor), who want to learn more about him & where he came from. But still thinking he is a mighty hero, his ego takes a bashing rather then his enemies this time around, as he realizes he is just a humble human now.

Overall, coming into this I wasn't 100% sure what we would be getting with this Marvel comic movie directed by Kenneth Branagh. But we did walk away enjoying it. The main reason of that was down firstly to the films pace, it clicked along well & kept our interest, albeit it was predictable in places. And secondly the great cast of Anthony Hopkins (The Silence of the Lambs) who was amazing as Odin, powerful, wise & yet fragile. Natalie Portman (Black Swan) had a great chemistry with Chirs Hemsworth (The Cabin In The Woods), the romance & genuine funny moments between them offered up some nice light hearted moments in the movie. Colm Feore (The Chronicles Of Riddick) in heavily made up prosthetics gave a usual menacing performance as the baddie, while the relatively unknown Tom Hiddleston who starred in director Branagh's acclaimed T.V detective show Wallander, also held his own as the devious Loki. Rene Russo(The Thomas Crown Affair), Idris Elba (Luther) & Stellan Skarsgård (Good Will Hunting) also added solid support to the film, with Russo in very much a cameo role. As you might expect with a fantasy film these days, CGI is heavily depended on for the Asgard setting etc... and the battle scenes were well done, with the obvious OTT, yet very entertaining battles.

In conclusion, Thor is a very entertaining & enjoyable fantasy film with a solid cast that see's it through to end well. Recommended.
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33 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing, 3 May 2012
By 
Miss L. Bruce-Kerr (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Thor [DVD] (DVD)
As someone who hasn't read the Thor comics, I have no idea how faithful this film is or how in-character everybody is. But as a film fanatic, this is an amazing addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The viewer starts with little love for the main character, but I (and the people I watched this with) found that his personality was developed wonderfully, and that he's actually a really likeable hero underneath his arrogance and self-centred-ness. By the end of the film, he's one of the most relatable characters. Even the villain of this story is sympathetic, and it really is painful for the viewer to see him lose his way. I was apprehensive about the humans Thor meets- I don't really like romance or 'fish-out-of-water' movies- but they were all rather likeable and behaved realistically enough- well, except Darcy. I'd watch a film about that girl on her own, she's a brilliant cloud cuckoolander.

Some aspects of the story could have been explained better- like the Odinsleep- but most of these mysteries are cleared up with either watching the other MCU films or looking at some Norse myths (which is what this film and it's comic counterpart are loosely based on). I liked the way aspects of Norse legend like Yggdrasil, the World Tree, were incorporated into this movie. Also, unlike most MCU films, this is very character-driven, and I think that is what makes it such a good film. The action scenes are few and far between, but what we see is epic and I think it's done really well.

It's a film I'd recommend to anybody with an interest in superheroes (since it's a fresh breath for the genre) and also for anybody who likes fantasy or family/romantic dramas. There's a little of something for everybody.
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65 of 77 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Where did he come from?", 13 Jun 2011
By 
@GeekZilla9000 "I am completely operational a... (Doncaster, Yorkshire, UK.) - See all my reviews
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There were puzzled faces aplenty when it was announced that luvvie Kenneth Branagh was to direct the Marvel Comic to film translation of Thor. But it seemed a natural choice, the story of a powerful family torn asunder by internal politics and dynastical challenges is as close to Shakespeare as you can get!

The films opens with a series of impressive sequences showing how Earth was threatened by the Frost Giants a millennia ago, now the Kingdom of Asgard remains as celestial peacekeeper and the great Odin has managed to keep an uneasy truce which is starting to look a little unstable now that his son Thor is thirsty for war. Thor's narrow minded compulsion to do battle leads the hammer-happy God to be banished to Earth where he must

The initial battle scenes on Earth and then the sweeping landscape of Asgard look like an epic reminiscent vast fantasy films of the 80s with a good dose of old fashioned folklore, it shows how the recent Clash Of The Titans remake could have looked. The strength of this film is the way it manages to take well known mythology turn it into a reality which links into our history, thus establishing the Norse Gods and their world as believable. This was a film which could have all-too-easily looked stupid, but instead the inhabitants are de-mystified, Asgard feels real and their kingdom doesn't feel like a silly way stereotyped Viking-esque world. Asgard looks as though it has existed for thousands of years and it seamlessly blends technology beyond human capabilities so add a great science-fiction element.

Anthony Hopkins is nothing short of superb as Odin, his performance is theatrical without being too hammed up. He brings great gravitas to the screen and steals every scene he is in. Chris Hemsworth plays Thor with a cockiness and self-assured manner which is deliberately annoying and essential to show how the God the Thunder has a lot of growing up to do. His brother (in the film of course) is convincingly deranged by his own sense of righteousness and gets to exercise his acting talents more than Hemsworth as Thor.

The earthbound moments of the story don't feel as strong as the Asgard based parts. Obviously there's a visual contrast, but that's not where the weakness lies. The blossoming romance between Thor and earthling Jane Foster feels a bit forced, it seems to exist without ever really developing any depth of chemistry and so you don't really buy into it. There are some moments of humour based around Thor's 'fish out of water' culture shock which are amusing (if a bit shoe-horned in) but Stellan Skarsgård is the man who grounds it in reality with his likeable everyman Erik. There are references to other Marvel universe works here too which tie things in nicely but don't always seem appropriate or natural.

The balance between character driven story and action is struck well here, the most compelling relationship is that between Odin and his sons. It results in some sycophantic dialogue at times but because of the grand surroundings doesn't feel contrived or cheesy. Branagh has no doubt silenced his critics here and gained new fans, his background of more thespian themed films is perfect for this and he clearly has the creative vision to help bring it to life.

As this is a very recent film, the Blu Ray transfer is very good (as expected). The differences between the scenes on and off Earth are clear to see, both are very detailed but the golden 'tint' of Asgard gives it an otherwordly look. There are a good number of bonus features here - most are worth a watch and cover aspects of film production though they tend to be pretty short (around five minutes or less) - the deleted scenes are fairly extensive however.

In a nutshell: Norse imagery and modern style are seamlessly bended in a film which may not have an original plot, but has a unique look that works very well. There are weaknesses which prevent this from being a truly great film but Thor has been a hot potato with responsibility passing between directors over the years and this exceeds all initial expectations and is still well above average. Comic book fan Branagh, and the team behind this have been ambitious and Thor manages to be a superhero film, a good science fiction film, and a fantasy epic - not many films are able to pull that off!
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32 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If i had a hammer, 27 April 2011
By 
Mr. R. W. Graham (Lincoln, U.K.) - See all my reviews
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Eyebrows were raised when it was first announced that luvvie Kenneth Brannagh would be directing Thor, a marvel superhero comic book adaption but Brannagh, a lifelong fan of the Thor comics as it has turned out, has made one of the best superhero films of all time. Thor had the potential to be a very silly film and a complete disaster, but instead rivals Iron Man, Spiderman 1 and 2 and X Men 1 and 2 as one of marvel's best ever films. Spectacular special effects and action scenes right from the start, with terrific performances from all, Chris Hemsworth is a star in the making as Thor and is the best one in the film though Tom Hiddlestone comes close and is also a name to watch as Thor's evil brother Loki. It's also a surprisingly funny film, done tongue in cheek as Thor attempts to adjust to life on Earth and the Warrior's Three lifted directly from the comics are great fun to watch. Watch out for appearances from Iron Man 2's agent Coulson and a very brief cameo from Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye and make sure you sit through the end credits which also feature an appearance from Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, tying up all the events so far in the marvel movie universe and setting up The Avengers. God knows what Brannagh's luvvie friends will make of this film, but it's terrific entertainment and an absolute joy to watch. Roll on Captain America, which will have to be very special indeed to beat this. One of Kenneth Branagh's best films.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Marvel -lous!!, 4 Oct 2011
By 
Soo Broo (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Thor [DVD] (DVD)
Wow, there are some real extremes of reviews on here! I actually thought it was pretty good.

I thought Chris Hemsworth was a little wooden at the beginning, although he did get better as the film went on. He certainly looks the part; suitably Norse I thought and pretty aggressive. I love Anthony Hopkins and thought he was very good, in fact we could have done with a bit more of him.

I thought the effects were very good, although I agree with other reviewers that Asgard was reminiscent of an eighties disco, but the Frost Giants' world was very atmospheric and I liked the Rainbow Bridge.

We have had a number of these sort of films where "someone" falls/comes to Earth and generally they're quite good (except Starman) and I did like the parts where Thor was mortal. Natalie Portman was pretty good in this; I haven't seen her in much apart from Star Wars (she was dreadful) and Black Swan (very convincing).
Stellan Skarsgard could have been utilised more, especially as he is Scandinavian. They all seemed to accept the fact that Thor was a Norse God pretty quickly and unquestioningly, but that's film for you I suppose.

On the whole, worth watching - visually exciting and original and a good storyline.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Need I say?, 27 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Thor [DVD] (DVD)
Chris Hemsworth, Nordic Gods, battles, humor, love story, over the top costumes and a hammer which gives you the power of flight. Down side - there is none.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great stuff, 6 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Thor [DVD] (DVD)
this is a very entertaining sci-fi super hero film it is well written and acted and is well worth a watch the effects are good and it sets the trend for the follow up movie (which I cant wait to see) and the avengers movie some of the cast are in the avengers movie and they are shown as much younger than the avengers movie so it gives insight into the following movies Natalie Portman and Hemsworth are great and Anthony Hopkins is brilliant as Thors father
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommend., 1 Jan 2014
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Certainly not a disappointment. Fantastically shot, brilliantly acted, can't find anything to fault. I've no doubt there are experts out there who may disagree but I love it & thoroughly enjoy it every time it's played. From a female point of view Chris Hemsworth is perfect as Thor but for some reason I keep finding myself drawn to Loki, excellently played by Tom Hiddleston. Roll on the release of 'The Dark World' on DVD.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie!, 5 Dec 2013
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This Blu-ray version is amazing! Great extras and wonderful image and sound! The movie itself, is one i'd highly recommend to any Marvel universe fan. The cast does an amazing job in putting their heart and soul into the characters! You get lost into this wonderful magical world that is put in front of your eyes and don't be surprised if you find out you actually like the villain!
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Thor [DVD]
Thor [DVD] by Kenneth Branagh (DVD - 2013)
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