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Thor: The Dark World Review

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Thor is back. Get ready for an Asgardian adventure that crosses over many of the Nine Realms and be prepared for plenty of action and adventure. And lots of long hair.

If there's one thing you have to commend the separate Marvel Cinematic Universe films is the potential for variety. We've seen all the characters introduced in either The Avengers or their individual solo movies. Each character brings something different to the table. Thor stands apart from the others, just by the fact that he's not from Earth. For a Thor solo movie, the trick is finding the balance between Asgard and his connections to Jane Foster and Earth.

With this marking Thor's third movie appearance, the decision was made to try to go make him more larger than life. While in the first movie we got a decent glimpse at Asgard, there is definitely a bigger feel here. We also see more of the Nine Realms as there is plenty of chaos that has erupted across them. It's a visual feast with plenty going on everywhere.

Even though there is a lot to see in The Dark World, the biggest problem is there are too many characters to be seen. This results in short glimpses at certain characters which leaves you wanting more. For a movie that was originally described as containing big adventures on Asgard, we don't actually see much of Thor's fellow Asgardians. If you thought there'd be a lot of Sif and the Warriors Three on screen, you'll definitely be left hungry for more. They do appear and have some great scenes. Just not as much as you would expect or hope.

The movie focuses on Malekith, the Dark Elf, an ancient enemy of Asgard. He is after a certain object which, in a way, leads to Jane and Thor being reunited. Soon a war erupts across a few of the different Realms but rather than feature Thor and an army of Asgardians, the movie veers into the direction of pairing Thor and Loki.

As you may have heard, Loki's presence is largely felt, despite not appearing throughout the entire film. Tom Hiddleston really shines in the role and while the filmmakers do capitalize on this, it's surprising they didn't try to utilize him even more. You're almost left with a strange feeling of wanting more of the other Asgardians but more focus on Loki as well.

There are a few elements to movie that give it a slight odd feeling. The first is the amount of humor and silliness thrown in. It started gradually but with Loki's snarky attitude and the return of Darcy Lewis and Erik Selvig, parts of the movie could be labeled as a comedy. The humor is good. Without it, the movie could easily be dry and not as interesting. It started feeling like too much but I have to admit some moments did make me chuckle.

There's a strange mix to good old fashioned Asgardian fighting and heavy sci-fi elements. We've seen that some of the Asgardian technology is more mechanical versus having a mystical or godly nature. There is a feeling of unbalanced during an attack scene where it's clear the Asgardians have some pretty advanced weapons yet their main army still relies on shields and swords. (Spoiler: it doesn't go too well for many). This sci-fi feeling could be meant to get us ready for Guardians of the Galaxy.

Then there's Malekith. As the main villain, it's almost difficult to fully grasp his motivation. He places the blame for some loss on Asgard but it really doesn't feel like that's justified. He wasn't a bad villain (in terms of quality villains). He just wasn't a great one.

For a two-hour movie, parts of it, especially in the beginning take a little while to kick the movie into gear. Once the movie and action are going, there are other moments where it feels a little rushed. Things start happening very quickly.

Overall, it is an enjoyable film. Loki and Thor are great together. There are plenty of nods to the existing Cinematic Universe. There's plenty of action and humor. At the end of the day, the fact that you'll be entertained is what's important. It may not fully be the pure Asgardian Thor movie we might want, but there are plenty of good elements with scenes of the different characters jumping into the spotlight, albeit for brief moments.

Thor: The Dark World should make fans of the Cinematic Universe happy. It's not perfect but there is a lot to like. The bar has been set pretty high. It's easy to go into this movie with high expectations. It's a good way to spend a couple hours and you'll feel like you're with old friends. It's just too bad certain key moments were spoiled in the trailers.

(And don't forget, there are mid-credits and after-the-credits scenes you won't want to miss).

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Edited by Cassius_Knightfall

Heard only good things from people who have it here in UK. The usual mix of to little of character x or things that have changed from source where the only minor complaints i have heard. But considering this is supposed to be the hardest part of the Avengers family to crowd in the universe it seems that another decent job has been done. I certainly look forward to watching it myself.

Posted by bunkerbuster05

Fantastic!

I'm just ready for the Guardians of the galaxy tease.

Posted by Dragonborn_CT

I gotta, say when that post-credit scene appeared on screen my remaining audience went "WTF"?

Edited by Danial79

I think the post-credits scene is pretty missable, but the mid-credit scene certainly made me happy. As for the rest of the film, my only complaint was that some of the humour was a little on the corny side. Other than that, thought it was pretty damn good.

Edited by E1000

I thought this movie was awesome, not Avengers-awesome but definetly Thor 1 awesome.

It walked the very difficult line between a fun and entertaining movie and an epic super-heroic adventure. Iron Man 3 did it all wrong with just too many jokes and the movie finally felt it was all a big joke and no action scenes could be taken seriously.

Actions scenes were awe-inspiring enough to convey the action movie feeling, but not too long as in Man Of Steel where, well, it got so boring.

Comedy was dozed appropriately, Action too.

Then there's Malekith. As the main villain, it's almost difficult to fully grasp his motivation.

I disagree with that. Okay there's not a nice little story of the dark elves, but you get that they were here before, that they were kicked out by the asgardian and they're pissed about it. Malekith was a monolitic unstoppable villain, and Eccleston portrayed him marvelously. he really conveyed the feeling of superiority he has towards everything except himself (for example he practically never uses the name of Thor) He simply doesn't care, he just want to raze everything.

It's just too bad certain key moments were spoiled in the trailers.

Well, that's what happens when one (in general I mean) analyzes trailers frame by frame 30 seconds after they've been released !

Your review is really good, I just wanted to point the elements that were best in this movie compared to, let's say, any superhero movie since Avengers !!

Posted by Rorie

@e1000 said:

It's just too bad certain key moments were spoiled in the trailers.

Well, that's what happens when one (in gener analyzes trailers frame by frame 30 seconds after they've been released.

I wouldn't say that's true. The location of the entire climax of the movie was given away in the first trailer, which is a pretty big deal in the movie and kind of hard to miss if you even glanced at it. Kind of silly from a promotional standpoint, since it ruins a lot of the tension regarding where the villain is eventually going to wind up.

Staff
Posted by TheManInTheShoe

I really, really liked this movie. It had its premiere earlier in Europe and I saw it on Halloween. I loved the action and the humor and the casting is spot on. I really liked that a fellow Swede could so much attention, even though he played sort of a mentally ill scientist and ran around naked at Stonehenge...

Posted by leokearon

A great movie and Agents of SHIELD is going to focus on the aftermath of the movie

Posted by scouts1998

Saw it on Saturday (in Australia) and i loved it. 8.5/10 or 4 stars on comic vine.

It left out some features from the first film.

Did we need the shirtless Thor scene?

Also pumped for Guardians of the Galaxy

Everyone stay right to the end of the credits because there is 2 credit scenes

Edited by E1000

@leokearon said:

A great movie and Agents of SHIELD is going to focus on the aftermath of the movie

I tried to avoid that kind of Info, thank you !

Edited by feedonatreefrog

6 out of 10 for me.

It reminded me of Iron Man 2/3.

Fun at times, and visually well-realized on Asgard, but the story is not very compelling to say the least, and it squanders a lot of potential.

The first movie, despite its underwhelming set pieces and the fact that Asgard felt like 2 rooms and a bridge, had a decent character story, a decent romance, and most of all - heart. (the original Thor musical theme is painfully absent).

The sequel is sorely missing all those. And the action isn't so spectacular (like The Avengers) that it compensates for all this.

Edited by lifeboy

Is this a good jumping on point??

Edited by The Stegman

I watched it online since it doesn't come out til Thorsday here in the states, it was...okay, could have done without Jane though, I know all movies need romance, but geez she's irrelevant.

Posted by Veshark

I'd give it a 3/5 stars. Not terrible, but passable.

Posted by herrweis

I hope its good.the first movie wasn't as good as I had hoped.too much of a love story and not enough action

Edited by evilvegeta74

Can't wait to see!

Posted by MajorJay

I got to the see both the original and the latest at the cinema... one after the other last week.

without watching the new again, all I can say is it better then the original, I loved having Darcy back.. she was by far the best character for her comidic one liners...

go an see it!!!

Posted by lowlaville

Hair.. now that I can agree with. Haha...

Edited by Buddy_Baker

"There are a few elements to movie that give it a slight odd feeling. The first is the amount of humor and silliness thrown in. It started gradually but with Loki's snarky attitude and the return of Darcy Lewis and Erik Selvig, parts of the movie could be labeled as a comedy. The humor is good. Without it, the movie could easily be dry and not as interesting. It started feeling like too much but I have to admit some moments did make me chuckle."

I agree with that. Many gags made me smile, but even some of the good ones were placed at the wrong moments in the film which ruined a bit of the drama. They could have left out some of them.

I also agree on Malekiths characterization. He was pretty good (especially visually, as well as the other Dark Elves and Kursed) but more scenes showing their manners explaining their motivations wouldn't have hurt.

Nontheless: i really enjoyed this movie. It has great pictures and entertaining action scenes with good character moments as well (Hiddleston did it again!).

I liked the mid credits scene, too. It left me pumped!

Edited by Lykida

I was lucky and watched the movie already last week here in Europe. I didn't watch any of the teasers or trailers (except the first), because that spoiled Iron Man 3 for me.

As a big fan of the Thor comics I have to say I loved every minute of the movie. It's amazing how a character and the whole story of the movie can be so very different from the comic books and yet so entertaining without feeling awkward.

And yes, there are some goofy scenes (some made me laugh out really loud actually), but remember the Walter Simonson stories from the 80s. There was lots of goofiness involved as well^^

Posted by JohnnyGat

I love how Stan Lee's cameo was outshined by another cameo.

Edited by RedQueen

Agree with this review; but what I will say is that the final battle is just... Well, it's just amazing :D I'd give it a 4.5 ish, but the film could have done with more Lady Sif and the warriors three. And perhaps a touch more severity.

Posted by TazzMission

i loved this movie and would i say its better than the first one? honestly i think there equal and imo i give this 8 out of 10. yea the villain was under used but this was way better than ironman 3

Edited by G-Man

@johnnygat: yeah, that other cameo was great. I didn't even want to hint at it in the review. Let everyone be nice and surprised.

I appreciate everyone using spoiler tags. We'll do a spoilery video discussion probably for Friday if everyone can wait.

Staff
Edited by Shallbecomeabattoo

I loved the movie! For me it was the best Marvel movie to date.

Only huge problem I had with it (and why its only a 8.9 out of 10 for me) is the humor. Its just too much and too childish sometimes. Don't get me wrong, I laughed a lot and most jokes are great, but there are also a lot of parts where a joke downright ruins a dramatic moment and takes out all tension and excitement. Iron Man 3 had the same problem.

I know that Marvel is going for kids and women (the jokes are almost saying "its ok to watch this. We know its stupid, so laugh with us") with the jokey scenes, but its taken too far sometimes.

They don't have to be über serious like the DC films, even if I would love that, but at least they should go back to the pre Avengers movies tone.

But again, all in all, I really enjoyed it a lot!

Posted by GodOfMischief

@shallbecomeabattoo:

I agree with you completely. Some of the comedy felt quite forced and unnecessary, but apart from that I think it's my favourite Marvel film so far.

Posted by Wolverine08

Looks cool.

Posted by Stefano

I really liked the movie, it was funny (captain america cameo), the action was good, chris is better as thor, every character was better used and loki steals the show (his scenes with thor, frigga and Odin were very good, also his death and later sitting in the throne on the final scene…)

Edited by Fresh Prince

I really enjoyed the film (seen it thrice already this week) but there were a couple of things that really bothered me. The character development of Malekith didn't go so well and it was really more of him wanting to destroy everything. The action also wasn't too great. I was hoping we'd get Thor in a more "badass" version but we only had him do a couple of cool thing all throughout the movie. I felt that yet again the movie universe failed to make full use of how cool Thor could look in a fight. I'll also put this under a spoiler even though it probably isn't but I didn't like how the Asgardians and Dark Elves were shooting so much lasers and flying space ships. Really made it feel more like Star Wars than a Thor movie. It was still a very enjoyable movie and definitely a must see. I don't think the things I mentioned would really bother a casual movie-goer or someone not to into Thor. Just some of those details that grind my gears.

Posted by ULTRAstarkiller

Sweet

Posted by Herx

Loved the film. Saw it as part of a Thor, Avengers & Thor Dark world marathon in the cinema, watching darkword at 00.05 am on its release date. Comparing it to the only other marvel sequile film of Iron man 2/3 (avengers, though could be considered a sequile to all the other films isn't one in my mind. Just a huge ass frigging awsume team-up) i think that Thor as a character and his world are better portrayed. Thor as a character has grown and matured from the thor we see at the begging of the first film (compare this to Tony stark who, though funny, doesn't really grow that much in the filmverse as, well, its downy jr and nobody wants to see an iron man who isnt downy jr being downy jr). The shinyness of asguard seen in the first film is now shown with more of its murk, which i liked, and it was great to see the wide cast of characters from the first film return (and seriously, it wasn't until his last appearance on the screen that i finally realized that Fandral was being played by a different actor. i just thought the guy had changed his hair :P). As for the humor i liked it. Sure during the final battle the Darcy and intern Ian humor just felt out of place and felt like it ruined the mood but other than that i thought that it was alright (oh wait. i forgot about guy from the IT crowd... yeh funny but his scenes are forgettable. sorry guy). The Selvic pants humor/crazy humor: childish, yes. Fits in with whats been going on with the rest of the marvel film-vurse post avengers, hell yes. Guy had a frigging asgardina god in his head forcing him to become an asset in the deaths of hunders/thousands of New Yorkers in Avengers so of course he's going to have his head flipped and his humor crass plus from his point of view the "funny" scene when he first meets thor again (after a serious moment) makes sense though we as viewrs forgett for a moment about the history of the "other" character in question being mentioned. Actually, it could be said that Dark World was Selvics redemption journey for his actions (under mind controll) in Avengers. At the beginning he's crazy as f*ck and by the end (as the world get crazier) he completes his journey. And on that not i'd also like to say how i enjoyed the use of both the Asguard and earth cast in this film. The all played a role which was great to see, rather than them being disgarded to the side for just a thor maliketh showdown.

Ecelston is a great actor though Maliketh does seem to be from the "generic universe dominatoin for the sake of it" school of villainy compared to the sneaky manipulative loki school of villainy from the first film, which isn't a bad thing by itself (sometimes we just need a villain who's evil for the sake of evil). But when you have the villain of thor 1 & Avengers in the same film as Maliketh it, kind of makes his motivations seem uniteresting and bland (despite, what i thought, a great opening background story). Also, at the beginning of the film the try and set up a love triangle with Thro, Sif and Jayne. Now as someone who isn't to fond of love triangles being used in a story all of the time (face it. we've all seen a hell of a lot of bad ones) I'm glad that they didn't explore into it so much, BUT i was a wee bit peeved by the complete dropping of it by the first third (brought up, never to be mentioned again in this film). As for the mid-credit scene, i loved it (or at least what it was trying to set up) but it was obvious from the sets, costumes, make up and filming quality (which in my opinion had a early series of the revived doctor who feel to it overall. a coincidence, considering mr ecelston? most likley) that it was filmed much later on when the budget for thor was mostly spent and the initial filing/creation of the sets for guardians was beginning.


As for the Cameo: Frigging loved it. never laughed as much in the film as i did at that scene. wonderful : )

Posted by AlKusanagi

Got my ticket for a Thursday Thor/Avengers/Dark World marathon, so I'm not reading this until then!

Posted by TommytheHitman

Meh. It was okay.

Edited by SlickyMike88

I really disliked Thor 2.

Earth characters just go away, just annoying to me . The battles not great, just bland to look at . Loki was the best part of this movie , the rest I didn't care about:P. The villain ? who cares , just some generic alien that want's to destroy the world :P Should have had more Sif in it , she didn't really do much, instead we got Jane Foster lovie dovie Thor.

I usually like Marvel movies , but this one , just no.

Posted by CODYSF

Is it me or Marvel movie are going downhill this movie was meh.

Posted by marvel_dc_heroes_villains

Saw this on Saturday (I love that the UK gets Marvel movies first).

For me it was a solid 7/10. I loved the humour, as I prefer it when these films dealing with ridiculously powerful beings don't take themselves too seriously (looking at you Man of Steel) and the Thor and Loki dynamic was great. Hiddleston is easily the most talented actor of the Avengers bunch. Mid credits scene was really exciting as well. Obviously the effects looked outstanding and Svartalheim (I almost certainly spelled that wrong) was gorgeous, really benefiting from being shot on location in Iceland, and Alan Taylor's Game of Thrones background was very visible when in Asgard. Most of the action was well done too, but (rock monster scene aside) Thor didn't feel powerful enough until the very end.

My main gripe was the villain. When you get an actor as talented as Christopher Eccleston aboard, you should not waste him in a generic baddie role with absolutely zero depth and nothing to really do except sound threatening in a made up language. I also couldn't give less of a **** about the earthbound characters, who I think should have been scrapped in favour of giving Malekith a better story. From what I understand, some of Malekith's stuff was cut in favour of some extra Loki scenes, so I'm keen to see a director's cut of the film.

PS. As cool as it was, that last minute twist made absolutely no goddamn sense.

Can't wait for GotG

Posted by westy206

I don't understand any of the hate. Great movie in my opinion.

So you don't know much about Malekith so what.

Edited by dauntes_patron

When you watch this movie avoid sitting in the lower rows where you might sit behind a taller person. The Malekith's subtitles appear way too low on the screen, you won't be able to read them

*spoiler*

*spoiler*

*spoiler*

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The mid credit has to do with a certain stone

Edited by borahsarak

Great movie, pass the neg comments and watch the movie...

Posted by CaptainHoopla

@g_man: Is this just a typo? "He was a bad villain. He just wasn't a great one." Should this say wasn't a bad villain?

Posted by Colmillo_Senpai

Amazing movie

Posted by BritishMonkey

Still greater than Iron Man 3.

Posted by Bezza

I loved it as you can see from my own review on the Thor forum. IMO a better sequel than either Iron Man 2 or Iron Man 3. Love the humour, comic books shouldn't be too serious in my opinion and this film doesn't take itself too seriously. Thankfully we are saved the sort of heavy soap opera stuff we had in Spiderman 2 and 3....Can't wait for number 3!

Posted by z1co80

I must be one grumpy old b****** because i thought the humour in this was far too much. There was some genuinely funny moments but for me Marvel movies are going overboard with the jokes.

It was still a very good film but what impact does the emotional scenes have when two seconds later Thor or another character is making a joke? I think if the jokes had been used more sparingly they have more impact.

Still i enjoyed it, I'd give it a 3.5/5 or 7/10 whatever tickles your pickle but with a little restrain on the jokes it could have been an 9/10.

Just my opinion. I know others love Marvel's humour.

Posted by Chaos Burn

I really enjoyed this new Star Wars, uh, Marvel, instalment)

Edited by KingStandup

I can't wait to see Loki's role in this film. It seems like the God of Mischief gets more popular each time he appears on the big screen, which is awesome if you're a huge Loki fan - like myself! I would still love to see him in his own movie, but I'm just not sure Marvel would go for it. Definitely going see this opening day!

Posted by SkyRobo1

I love this movie but I'm a bit bias being a Heavy Thor fan but it is really enjoyable with few inaccurate scenes..I do love the chemistry between Thor and Loki..My favorite part of my time watching this film is when the after credits scene appeared and that X person appeared and everyone in the audience went Oh shit its him and I just laughed while my friends who werent into comics is like what the hell..

Posted by flazam

Loving the post credit scene

Infinity Gems!!!

Edited by BoyWander

IT'S TUESDAY WHAT THE HECK YO!? I GOTTA WAIT ANOTHER THREE DAYS FOR THIS! WHY SO SOON!?

Posted by Omega Ray Jay

Awesome, Loved it. Light years better than Iron Man 3, this truly felt like the first step into Phase 2 and exactly what I wanted, Like reading a Thor comic but in all it's cinematic majesty

I also think that the design work went up a notch in this one two.

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