Thor Movies Change Direction. I Like it!

In Marvel Studios' "Thor: Ragnarok," Thor is imprisoned on the other side of the universe without his mighty hammer and finds himself in a race against time to get back to Asgard to stop Ragnarok--the destruction of his homeworld and the end of Asgardian civilization--at the hands of an all-powerful new threat, the ruthless Hela. But first he must survive a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger--the Incredible Hulk!

The Skinny

There is a zippy celebrity cameo right off the top of Thor: Ragnarok, the latest film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Our title hero (Chris Hemsworth) has just returned from vanquishing some monstrous demon-thingy and is back home on planet Asgard celebrating his victory, when he comes across a group of local thespians putting on a play about his own past adventures.

The lead "actor" in this slice of meta-comedy is played by one of today's biggest movie stars, although it may take you more than a few blinks to register his mug. Once you inevitably do, and after a few more famous faces pop up around him, the scene delivers a delightful dose of wink-wink-nudge-nudge humor.

The film, the God of Thunder's third solo vehicle apart from his Avengers buddies, has made every conceivable effort to twist itself into an uber-wacky comedy that you might be confused into into thinking you were watching Guardians of the Galaxy. The gags are fresh, the dialogue is deadpan, the pacing is tight and the visuals kaleidoscopically trippy. Hemsworth, already an expert at poking holes in his heartthrob persona, flexes all manner of muscles, comedic and otherwise. The idea of pairing the oft-dull Thor with a series of oddball companions is an inspired move, and it works well.

The Bottom Line

A fun wild ride - go see it!