As an avid comic-book collector for many years, one of my favourites was Thor.  Showcasing the ongoing saga of a Norse god dealing with earthly and alien beings, his adventures captured the imagination.  Now arrives its cinematic incarnation which is suitably lush and rich in artistic and creative colour.  Blessed with a mega-budget and some decent acting, it does justice to a series lasting decades.

Banished to earth by his father Odin (Anthony Hopkins), the reckless Asgardian warrior Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is left to his own devices.  Forced to interact with humans, he forms a relationship with Dr Jane Foster (Natalie Portman).  Learning to tone down his impetuous ways, Thor’s strengths are tested when his evil brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) threatens his new home.  Determined to protect his new friends, Thor battles his foes with a vigour as only an ancient fighter can.

After being in Hollywood’s ‘development hell’ for nearly two decades, Thor’s cinematic incarnation has been worth the wait.  Wasting not a second of screen-time, the plot thunders its way through some slick action sequences, great acting and vibrant production design.  Expertly bringing the comic book’s flavour to life, Director Kenneth Branagh ensures his characters have believable traits despite the outlandish events taking place.

Much of this success is due to a great script co-written by Mark Protosevich and noted science fiction creator J. Michael Straczynski.   Both have clearly done their homework and infuse lots of famous moments from Thor’s past adventures.  For much of the film Thor is forced to live as a mere mortal, with his arrogance only standing in the way of gaining true power.  This allows the actors to fully flesh out their roles with Hemsworth equipping himself admirably as the God of Thunder.

Yet another fine adaptation of a Marvel comic, Thor is an excellent addition to their growing cinematic output.  Exciting, engaging and spectacular, it hits all the right targets that should please Thor’s old fans and draw in the new ones to come.

Rating out of 10:  8

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