Thor: Ragnarok Movie Review

thor-ragnarok-easter-eggs-beta-ray-bill-man

Easily this is Thor and Hulk at their best on screen to date. The film is never boring, and it is very funny…almost to a fault.

I went out to the Thursday night early showing of Thor: Ragnarok (my custom made Hulk helmet atop my head and face painted green with the white tattoo from the film).

After nearly two years I was pumped and ready to see this film that had my expectations incredibly high…and for the most part they were met.

The film moved quickly and did a decent job of juggling so many characters, including a few fun cameos and such. Most characters were also presented very well. Though I still have reservations about Korg’s voice. Miek should also have had a bigger role.

The humor pervaded the entire film. In most cases the humor was on point and got a chuckle out of me. However, I felt there were times it could had held back a little. The humor might have been more effective had it been better balanced with the seriousness of such a topic as the end of Thor’s world. Certain characters introduced in previous Thor films died in this movie…but were quickly passed over for the next joke or were just handled very poorly. The impact of these had very little resonance, even if they were bit characters.

That being said the humor definitely livened things up and it is clear the makers of this film wanted to hit on the same beats as Guardians of the Galaxy. But even in GotG there were serious moments that were better handled.

Thor is amazing in this. Especially in the first scene where he still has his hammer. THIS was the Thor we have all been waiting for. He was incredibly badass. Later in the film his lightning powers become more apparent and he certainly uses them to his advantage leading to even more awesome scenes.

Hulk very nearly steals the stage in my opinion, but fails to do so due to his second-banana role. Many scenes have him conveniently operating off screen or he is blurred out as we are focused on Thor. That being said the Hulk has his time to shine. We get a better idea of his personality. We get to see him have more range in how he thinks and we get to see him do more then just SMASH. He becomes a more fully fleshed character. His scene in the gladiator arena will probably be burned into my brain for the rest of my life. However, I cam kind of angry how the battle with Thor ended….didn’t seem like something the Hulk would be ok with to me. But overall I really enjoyed Hulk in this film!

However, my major gripe is that the movie essentially uses the Planet Hulk storyline but replaces Hulk with Thor. Hulk then basically becomes his Korg (or Silver Savage). Many of the major plot points of Planet Hulk are in Ragnarok…even including how it ends. It just upset me that arguably the best Hulk story in decades was used to make Thor a better movie.

Oh well, we Hulk fans must take what we can get as long as Universal still holds the rights to him. At least we know Hulk will continue to play a big role in future films.

Also, despite Hulk becoming a second place characters and a side story (though it was the better story in my opinion when competing with the main Ragnarok story) many advertisements placed Hulk at the center. Most of the Hulk’s best scenes were leaked in the trailers. It was a disappointment to be marketed so heavily under Hulk, but then we end up seeing mostly Thor in the film.

I could go on and on with what I loved and hated about the film. So I will just say that as a film this was definitely entertaining. Everyone in it was at their best. Thor and Hulk were at their best. I hope Marvel hears the criticisms and fixes things in the future. But overall I recommend this film…two fists up!

Get Smashed!

 

Advertisements

Thor: Ragnarok Clip: Thor and Korg

Another clip from Thor: Ragnarok has been released onto Youtube. This time it features Korg, the Kronan, who would be one of Hulk’s warbound in the comics and animated feature.

At first I was excited…but then I watched the clip and I thought “this has to be a joke?” Korg sounds like nothing you would expect. I always imagined him with this low, gravelly voice (pun intended). The reason this worked is cause Miek was supposed to have the weaker, high pitched voice. It was a balance of character persona’s.

But this Korg sounds like a smaller, normal guy. I guess it’s supposed to be funny. His voice not matching his body…but come on! I have been extremely excited for this film, but the more I see of the comedy I feel like they turned what could possibly be Hulk’s shining moment…into a big joke.

I’m really not happy or impressed with this choice. Now maybe I am seeing this out of context. Perhaps there is more then what I am seeing. But at this moment…I am starting to have some doubts about the directing choices for this film.

I hope I’m wrong. See the clip below and you be the judge.

Planet Hulk Event Dial #E100 Heroclix

PHheroclix-finalIn honor of Thor: Ragnarok coming soon….

I present the Planet Hulk Event Dial Heroclix. This limited edition dial includes not one, not two, but FOUR characters…all featured in the Planet Hulk storyline. The characters being Green Scar (Hulk), Korg, Miek, and the Silver Savage (Silver Surfer).

This item was released for the Marvel Mutations and Monsters booster set in or around 2007. It also seems these figures were produced separately as well for their own heroclix.

This is one of the coolest heroclix items I own. I managed to snag it at a comic convention for about $20. If you love the Hulk, or just enjoy the Planet Hulk story-line I feel this item is worth it for the shelf. The sculpting and poses are just about the best you could ask for. It’s also a fairly size-able piece. So you need room for it.

Current Ebay prices have it priced around $20-35.

Thor: Ragnarok – Hulk’s Warbound First Look??

Images have hit the internet showing some more toys related to the new Thor movie. They can be seen here. Included in these images are figures depicting multiple characters, but more importantly we get our first look at Korg and Miek! Based on these toys I have taken the liberty to draw what the characters might look like in the movie. This is a fairly quick sketch and given how stylized the figures ares, not to mention it’s of them at only one angle, the sketch is rather basic.

warbound-thor

However, we can see what details the designers decided to keep, and update, in regards to the Hulk’s warbound. Korg looks very much the same if not perhaps a bit older and of course he’s gray, not orange. Thus matching him up to the other Kronan witnessed in Thor: Dark World. He also has a bit more armor in keeping with how much more “dressed up” the Hulk is.

The biggest surprise is Miek. In the comics and animated movie he looks like an anthropomorphoid Ant with two legs and four arms. Thin and obviously very frail. At least at first. Here the designers have taken that bug idea but went in the direction of a worm or beetle. Except this little worm is equipped with a mobile mech-suit complete with large blades.

Part of me is sad they diverted so much from the original design. But at the same time I’m kind of digging this new look. This could provide other possibilities along the lines of him being a sort of Rocket Raccoon-type. Miek could be the withdrawn tech geek of the group. This bug form is also very larvae-like. Perhaps this caterpillar might become a butterfly someday…wink wink.

In any case this continues to excite me as to how they are able to further re-invent the world of Sakaar. November can’t come soon enough.

Incredible Hulk #92 (Planet Hulk Exile 1)

ph1-92

Writer: Greg Pak / Artist: Carlo Pagulayan / Cover Artist: Jose Ladronn and Bryan Hitch

During the Hulk’s long run he has had many stories. Most become your normal monthly fair, some memorable, some forgotten. But back in 2006 Marvel introduced us to a new and exciting vision of the Hulk. They gave Hulk his own world.

Now of course it wasn’t his world to begin with. Hulk was tricked onto a shuttle and jettisoned into space with the hopes he could live the rest of his life in peace on a quiet planet.

Well as is custom with Hulk and Banner things didn’t go as planned and Hulk’s shuttle would crash land on a planet full of chaos and corruption. A planet of death ruled by a tyrant.

This first issue would detail Hulk’s fist steps on this new planet, called Sakaar, and introduce new characters such as Miek, Korg and Caiera. Characters that would influence the Hulk and follow him at least a decade later. Basically take the movie ‘Gladiator’ and replace Russel Crowe with the Hulk. You then have the basic idea for this book, but so much better in my opinion.

I own the hardbound collection of the entire story and it is a big book. But given my love for the story, having read it many times, and now hearing of Planet Hulk concepts being used in the Thor: Ragnarok film I had to own a copy of the first issue. The art is amazing. The story is engrossing. Pacing is a bit fast, but it’s a lot of story to cover.

This issue was valued at about $35-$50 prior to news of the Ragnarok film. Afterwards, the value for it has risen from $50 to as high as $150. Thankfully I was able to win one in an auction for $45. So I didn’t pay much more then I wanted to. Will this price increase remain or eventually settle down? Who knows? But if you want a copy its a gamble either way for buying now or waiting.

In any case I loved the Planet Hulk story line and its influenced much of the Marvel universe and even inspired a Red Hulk version (which I have not read but looks shorter and less interesting). It was so popular in fact that Marvel re-used the title ‘Planet Hulk’ for a later release of a Hulk title occurring during the recent BattleWorlds events.

All in all a great read and with the new movie having the Hulk in armor, this may be the best time to own a copy. HULK SLASH!