Ragnarok is quirk and pizzazz in primary colors. It’s one-liners on trash planets run by Jeff Goldblum. It’s humor and clash and straight rock and roll. It’s meant to be fun.The beauty of current Marvel films, still solid in story, is that they don’t take themselves too seriously. The pure cadence of Goldblum’s speech sets the tone for Thor’s third in the Marvel regime. Perhaps the Pratt playful dialogue of Guardians is contagious and they knew they’d need to bridge that gap before Infinity War.In Norse myth, Ragnarok is the famous end game as prophesied in dreams. It is the end of Asgard, and it specifies the deaths of each member of Odin’s household, including Thor. Novelist Neil Gaiman recently released his book “Norse Mythology” which offers short stories detailing the lore of Thor, the hijinks of Loki, the double-sided nature of the All-father Odin, the true evil nature of Hela the goddess of death, the wisdom of Heimdall, the details of Ragnorok, and more. It’s brilliant.Thor operates with different tools, as a god. His super strength, second only to his chiseled abs, helps him to defeat evil forces like frost giants that threaten his community. With the loss of his hammer, poor Thor is displaced and forced into the gladiatorial ring. He must escape, form a new team, and rescue Asgard before his long-lost sister destroys everything he spent his life protecting.
Unlike the deities of Greek mythology who fear nothing as they play dice with mortal humanity, Norse gods know that their days are numbered. Life is therefore more precious, purposed; it’s a battle worth fighting. And if you’ve been riding the Marvel train all along, you’ll probably agree that this is a film worth seeing.
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