Posted on 5/16/11 08:42 AM
By now people who have read my reviews should know I rarely give a movie over an 80% unless it reaches a level that makes me feel like I'm 10 agai...I dont see movies hoping that they will win Best Picture next year. I see movies to escape from the mundane crap of life. And there are several moments here where I managed to break into giddy smiles...so lets get started:
1) The Plot...Shakespearean...brothers warring over their father's love, a father who is dissapointed in his son's life but knows the son is capeable of great things...and of course a love story thrown in.
2) Anthony Hopkins- Ya he gets first billing here cuz he nails everything in this film. As a King I would follow him anywhere. He plays all his roles perfect. Even when a tear rolls out of his eyes mid-sleep i felt like the whole audience shared his saddness...what other actor gives that type of emotion while SLEEPING....he's a badass too.
3) Thor/Loki...Played perfectly but keep in mind that this is an origin story, so of course the "bad guy" isnt the greatest. Thor is a show-off duechebag prettyboy and his character arc is actually very well rounded. I believed everything the actor did, even the cheesy "fish out of water" Earth humor. Loki was good too but nowhere near as effective as Thor...their scenes together, however, were very good.
4) Supporting cast....Natalie Portman does one thing in this film...swoon...thats it...and she does it very well. Stellan Skarsgard (sp?) is always awesome so i liked him too. The warriors 3 dont really do much and the guy from Rome who i think is awesome just kind of eats a lot. They really only fight at the beginning and their fights kinda reminded me of Power Rangers, especially in the New Mexico scenes. yadda yadda yadda, everyone does a good job.
5) Direction/look/feel....great. The flying scenes were shot amazingly well and even my girlfriend who did not want to see it at all (neither did i actually) said the space flights and hammer flights were really cool to watch. Thor is totally different from Superman in that Thor flies with intent and pure power. For Superman, flying is effortless and so his is always graceful, but man, Thor flying at the screen he looks like he's ready to destroy everything.
6) The Hammer: Great...I know nothing about thor...nothing...i had zero interest in seeing this and am only really excited about Captain America this summer, not x-men, not green lantern, but going into the movie thinking "all he's gonna go is hit people, lame" wow was I wrong. Every movement and sound from this thing gets you to believe its the most powerful weapon in the universe.
7) Hawkeye....ya Jeremy Renner is in this and a lot of people not knowing his character were confused in the theater. Especially since he's in it for 2 minutes tops. He says a few lines but you can tell based on body language and facial expressions/line delivery that he is NOT someone to be messed with. At any second he could have killed Thor...not punched him hard, not injured him...no, this guy could have wasted the God of Thunder. I'm very excited for him to have a larger role.
8) SHIELD...."Is that one of Starks?" was prolly one of my favorite lines in this film. The fact that Agent Coleson is a strong enough character to make him the face of Shield is great. He's a fun character and the SHIELD presence is very well done here.
9) ACTION....its an origin story which means we get the "set-up", introducing the characters in a thrilling action scene, pause, throw in a little more action to keep people interested, pause, action scene to set up big fight, pause...wait...wait...wait...lead up, ending action. No its not amazing. It looks great, the sound is terrific, and Thor rocks, but its not an action movie that I'll be excited to see again. Maybe the first scene vs the icey blue giants but definitely not the finale. And that is the weakest point in the film. The final 20 minutes is very LoTR meats Power Rangers. Now, looking at other superhero movies we have:
Batman Begins: Batman vs Liam Neeson on a train...not the greatest especially with all the quick cuts.
Iron Man: Robot vs Robot...after seeing it a few times its not the best fight but its ok.
Spiderman: Spiderman vs Goblin...really cool, but it did take me a few seconds to actually remember the ending cuz 2 was just that much better.
X-Men: All the characters chained to the Statue of Liberty/fighting in the lobby...good for its time, stilll one of my favorites tho.
NO origin story final battle is especially memorable, so I let Thor slide on that one.
Bottom line: I am excited for Captain America...I just am. Seeing an American hero who's first comic book origin began to raise the hopes and dreams of a nation during the most known war in history trumps a lantern and a hammer...it just does. But having said that I was pleasantly surprised by this film. Kenneth Branaugh does a phenominal job directing this and every actor does a good job. The fights were fun and the more I type the more i really did like this film.
finally: the after-credits scene is only there to keep Sam Jackson's contract in place. It's kind of lame, doesnt feature any other superhero, and just sets up a sequel to Thor, not a bridge between this and Capt or Hulk or Iron Man. Even tho "gamma-radiation" is mentioned twice during the film and was really cool.