Did ‘The Avengers’ Connection Hurt ‘Thor’?

Published 3 years ago by , Updated June 27th, 2013 at 3:11 pm,

Thor movie discussion Avengers Did The Avengers Connection Hurt Thor?

Now that Marvel’s Thor has struck gold at the box office – two weeks running – it’s high time to continue a discussion that we began last year with the release of Iron Man 2 – namely, is Marvel Studios’ ambitious shared continuity approach to next year’s epic superhero movie event, The Avengers, a sign of how superhero movie franchise should be built, or an experiment that shouldn’t be repeated?

Before we get into what is sure to be a divisive topic amongst comic book movie fans, make sure you’ve checked out the following posts:

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It should also go without saying that the topics discussed in this article will contain MAJOR THOR SPOILERS – READ AT YOUR OWN RISK!

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At this point we can say with assurance that most people enjoyed the Thor experience. The movie has a solid composite review scores on both Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, a solid Screen Rant Review, and is quickly approaching $350 million at the worldwide box office on a $150 million budget. Needless to say, Marvel Studios is still in the game as far as building its Avengers universe goes.

However, for all the positives surrounding Thor the film (like any other) isn’t immune to criticisms – the most common being that it felt like an uneven movie, made of two parts (the fantastical Asgard scenes and the more grounded Earth scenes) that never fully meshed together. Some people loved the Earth stuff, but didn’t love the Asgard stuff as much; other people felt the exact opposite way. However, the question here is not which realm served Thor best, but whether or not the film’s obligation as a lead-in to The Avengers was a detracting factor in how the movie’s story was spun.

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The S.H.I.E.L.D. Factor

Thor and SHIELD agent Coulson Did The Avengers Connection Hurt Thor?

If you’re not a cinephille who has memorized the 3-act structure employed by a lot of films (definitely summer blockbusters and DEFINITELY Marvel films), allow us to break down Thor into its 3 core parts:

  1. ACT I: Thor’s back story in Asgard, battle with the Frost Giants, and banishment.
  2. ACT II: Thor on Earth meeting Jane Foster, trying to reclaim his hammer, and “learning humility.”
  3. ACT III: Thor regaining his powers, beating up bad guys and saving the world(s).

If there is one thing that seems to be generally agreed upon, it’s that Thor‘s second act is its weakest. Second acts are typically reserved for the bulk of character development – in which a protagonist grows/develops/learns their lesson while the conflict of the story simultaneously approaches its climax. In Thor, this meant the titular hero learning NOT to be an arrogant bastard, so that he could grow into the wise hero his father Odin (Anthony Hopkins) wanted him to be. Thor’s relationship with Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) was intended to keep him grounded, and to motivate him to change, since the qualities Odin hoped he’d learn would also make him a worthy man for Jane’s affections.

That’s a great story to tell, and an interesting way to explore a nigh omnipotent superhero – de-powering him and making humility, compassion and wisdom the keys to re-gaining his powers. It would have been a slower, but more interesting approach to telling a superhero story (riskier for sure) but on paper it sounds intriguing. Other films might have invested full time and attention in these second act developments; however, director Kenneth Branagh had a bigger sandbox to fill – one that included Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg), his S.H.I.E.L.D. faction, and even an unsatisfying cameo by an Avenger (Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye).

"We're gonna ram some 'Avengers' stuff up in here and you're gonna like it!"

Compared to the Iron Man 2 team, the small squadron of writers who worked on Thor‘s script did a much better job of weaving S.H.I.E.L.D. and all those Avengers Easter eggs into the story.  After all, if a magical hammer like Mjolnir crashed on American soil, and nobody (not even Stan Lee!) could move it, top secret government spooks would definitely be all over it. S.H.I.E.L.D.’s involvement in Thor was clearly organic and logical, whereas their involvement in Iron Man 2 was clunky and awkward. Points for that.

On the other hand, when you have to split your second act between tying together a cinematic universe AND the proposed epic transformation that’s supposed to take place in your central character, ultimately there are going to be sacrifices…

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What Thor was missing…

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TAGS: thor

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  1. It’s hard to say what is still lying on the cutting room floor, but I think I agree with you. Character development is the keystone for driving a story on an emotional level. Very good film though and great to see one of my favorite Marvel hero’s on the big screen.

  2. I thought the Movie was pretty good. 7.5 – 8 on a scale of 1 – 10. I agree with the second half being the weak area but can over look it for the sake of shared continuity. However I just wanna ask…. Does anybody else feel like Thor being only an Alien/God in this Movieverse is less physically powerful? Like the Hulk, He has been tamed a bit. The Hulk movie left me feeling like the Hulk only lifted maybe 40 or 50 tons (no small feat but Im sure you get the ref.) Thor does seem powerful in the sense of storm/god-like powers but he seems to let the hammer do most of the heavy lifting. I dont doubt he has super strength but in the movie universe it seems like hand to hand he couldnt hang with the Hulk like he can in the comics. He seems like maybe he lifts what spider-man lifts like around 10 – 12 tons, 15 tops. Does anyone else think Thor has been a little de-powered? …… And the Hulk by extension?

    • Yeah I noticed the hammer thing,Hulk was strong but he fought with too many weapons eg.ripping things in half to fight with,another weak point,if you want to see a movie with raw power and strength watch Superman Returns.That was power.

  3. Its true and I think if you deny it then I don’t think you’ve seen the film, but Thor’s development didn’t work. the Asguard bits were brilliant as was Loki, but one night on a roof top and realising you can summon your scientific/magically enchanted hammer with a though would not make me humble getting drunk and beaten up would.

    Thor lacked the honest pensive feelings from Iron Man when Stark surveys his kingdom and sees the evil. Thor doesn’t get that because he’s just too arrogant to begin with and nothing really shows him that he has nothing to be arrogant about now he is essentially just a meek man without his abilities.

  4. Great article.
    I think the real problem is the running time on these movies. SHIELD had a proper amount of screentime, we simply needed more Thor development. I don’t know what’s so wrong with a 2+ hr movie?

    • Irishrover,

      They should have taken 30 minutes from Pirates 4 and given it to Thor. 8)

      Vic

      • awesome.

  5. Also, Hawkeyes cameo felt forced to me. I would’ve preferred if it was more organic…like Renner takes down Thor and Coulson is like “Who are you?” “Barton, sir.” “What else can you do?” I don’t know…the way it cut to him choosing the now over a gun…I kept expecting the bottom of the screen to start flashing “Hawkeye Cameo”

  6. I respect your opinion but I think you overlook things alot. I felt like the Avengers references weren’t forced at all and they flowed well. Unlike in Iron Man 2 in which there was a bunch of unnecessary stuff.

  7. @ Kofi…..there is a lot in your article I agree with, especially in the underdeveloped “2nd act”. I mean in less than two days he goes from a table overturning god child to politely serving breakfast and acting so “domestic”? A bit far fetched to be sure.

    Personally I thought the biggest flaw in all that was their insistence on keeping it all in real time. Doing so was what forced the compressed timeline and Thor’s 180 degree turnaround. I would have much preferred elongating the time on earth by doing flashes of important milestones and epiphanies Thor would have had during his time as a mortal. I would say a month would have been sufficient. That also would have made Loki’s rise to power feel less rushed also. By that time Thor would have had time to create relationships with both the science team and the townspeople.

    As to SHIELD being too big a part of the movie……I don’t know if I agree they took too much time away from the Thor plot. Plus it did make sense from a realistic standpoint. If something like that had fallen from the sky chances are some governmental agency would have quickly showed up, not SHIELD of course but someone. To be honest though, what part of SHIELDs on screen time wouldn’t have happened without Thor? We are talking a few minutes where they take all the equipment and a fight sequence where he is trying to reach his hammer. Other than that it would still have happened with or without SHIELD being there (including Loki telling Thor their Dad was dead), it would have just been slightly different.

    So to summarize…..I don’t think the Avengers connection hurt Thor. The movie just needed to be 20 mins longer and Branagh should have explored him to be on Midgard longer (and expanded the Destroyer battle by 5 mins ;) )

    • I thought it was much bigger problem in IronMan2…I mean he went visit Pepper, loaded up the model, discovered the element, renovated his house,had equipment delivered and set it up himself, synthesized the element, built a new suit, flew across country in what 8 hours?

  8. I think everybody is being a little too critical of this movie. All movies have minor flaws and things we wish could have been done better, but theres only so much time they have to tell the story with only so much budget. The second film will probably have a lot more of what people thought was missing from this film. But guess what? like Kofi said, you want to see the AVENGERS on the big screen? this is what has to be done. thems the breaks. This movie was awesome, and while I too myslef have some issues with it, my like of it FAR outshines any problems i felt it had. Its a movie about a thunder god and friends coming to earth, from the comic it was translated from, I think they did an amazing job, so lets give them some credit instead of knitpicking about minor things we didnt like. lets be the good types of fanboys. for petes sake we could have gotten another MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE movie. so lets be thankful.

  9. I have to agree with Superduperman and Irishrover. Kenneth Branagh already had stated that he had to cut some scenes and he had regretably had to inform the female actress who was the owner of the diner in Thor, that her scene was cut. As far as the second 1/2 of Thor I think what might have made it as little stronger if he had to wander “a little” more a a homeless person(maybe a few weeks), maybe a soup kitchen scene where he might have been homeless and helped other less unfortunate people, or maybe someone let him work as a dishwasher and he gives a part of his little paycheck to someone who needed it more. These are actually things that I would have loved to see Thor do but unforunately they didn’t have enough time to show. Branagh and crew do redeem themselves in the story by allowing Thor to be a willing sacrifice to the Destroyer; knowing that there was no way he could beat The Destroyer. he was willing to die to at least reach Loki to try and convince him to not destroy the town and it’s people, and knowing Loki, he probably wouldn’t have stopped there. I think that was well done,if an arrogant person is willing to give up their own life for what’s right especially something that they feel is THEIR fault, I think that is very redeeming. After all, if Thor wasn’t in that town, then The Destroyer wouldn’t have been sent there in the first place. As far as the whole S.H.I.E.L.D/Avengers background, it was well balanced and necessary in the film and in NO way hindered it. If SHIELD didn’t show up, it wouldn’t have made any sense and the build up of Thor being in the Avengers was necessary instead of him “just showing up” in The Avengers without a backstory.

    As far as Iron Man 2 and the whole SHIELD/Avengers Initiative arc, as I said before, in NO way was THAT the problem, people keep saying it was and it wasn’t. It was Justin Theroux’s script or lack of. The story was not well written and was all over the place, Justin Theroux was Iron Man 2′s problem NOT the SHIELD/Avengers arc. The improv acting worked well in IM 1 but didn’t in IM 2 because at least in IM 1 they had a more solidified story than IM 2. If these superhuman events were actually going on, you’d better believe that some form of the gov would be all over it. They just need to be written in and balance them well. Therefore, I don’t think that SHIELD and AVENGERS arc hurt theses movies at all, if anything, they keep the movies GROUNDED in reality, and is what glue them all together to make them all cohesive as one body out of many. Sort of like a metaphorical VOLTRON. Beyond Marvel Studios, tell me who else has the cojones to do this massive job especially with a NEW movie studio.

    • My new band will be called “Metaphorical Voltron.” Nicely done, Ulik.

  10. Kofi, I agree that the second act felt a bit rushed, but it really didn’t affect my enjoyment of the movie. I feel that Thor is the second best film of the movies that Marvel have made. I feel that another 10-15 minutes spent on something similar to your suggestions would have put this movie right at Iron Man levels. I am hoping that when it is released on Blu-Ray there is a director’s cut with some of that extra footage.

    However, I don’t feel that the SHIELD scenes hurt the movie. I feel that they were blended in quite well and did a good job of tying Thor into The Avengers.

    What I am worried about is Thor 2. Not sure what kind of story they can come up with that will top the origin story AND The Avengers.

  11. Thor was about Thor where Iron Man 2 was about assembling a team than about the hero himself.

    The writing was over the top and the battle scenes were short.

    Thor did great with the story.

  12. Kofi, outstanding observations. I really enjoyed Thor, particularly, like many, the first two reels. Your suppositions concerning how the character and life-on-earth dynamic could have been better developed are dead-on. My biggest gripe with this generally fine film, however, is an old complaint I have had with almost every Marvel/cinematic outing: none of these directors know how to stage/film a fight scene. I have been looking forward for months to seeing Goldilocks square off with the Destroyer, who was truly a fascinating, chilling, and gargantuan villain in the Marvel Universe. So when the throw down actually appears on the screen? It’s 45 seconds long and Thor dispatches him with a Mjolnir-generated tornado and a body slam into the dirt. Are you kidding me? The brief skirmish between the monster and the “Warrior’s Three” was five times more exciting. My son, sitting next to me, literally groaned, “I hope that’s not all they’re going to have!”. Alas, that was the case. For me, “disappointment” doesn’t come close. Would it have killed Branagh, etc to have had the two powerhouses trade an actual punch or two? Toss in a few seconds of the kind of brawl the Hulk and Abomination had at the end of that flick (not as good a movie as Thor overall, but a much more satisfying showdown at that film’s end). I don’t know if the screenwriters, directors, etc. simply need to get a few more fan-geeks involved, or what, but short of perhaps that last Hulk attempt, I can’t really think of any of the Marvel films that have excelled at any of the action/battle scenes. (The first Spider-Man did okay and, believe it or not, I actually thought Daredevil’s bar fight was decent – the concluding fight with Bullseye, not as much. The big battle in the finale of the third X-Men movie? Don’t get me started on that one. Let’s just say that is one of the stunning, outrageous wasted opportunities of all movie-super-hero history.) Anyway, all of the above was one reason I’d have to say I thought Thor inescapably trailed off in the final act. After the Destroyer let-down, the knock-down-drag-out with Loki couldn’t make up the deficit. Again, very good film, but hampered by a fading final half- hour which would put it only in the top five, and not the number one spot, for my favorite Marvel movie.

    • If people truly understood the nature of The Destroyer they too would groan a bit. It is literally a force of nature created by Odin and endowed with power from the lead gods of multiple pantheons to combat a group of nearly omnipotent beings. It is not simply the Guardian of the Asgard treasure vault.

    • To be honest almost every Marvel movie, from their own studio or otherwise, have lacked in the area of fight scenes. The Hulk’s fight with Abomination was probably the best one which might be because it was two video game type CGI characters going at it.

      Daredevil, Elektra and Wolverine were terrible at the martial arts aspect considering how deeply rooted the comics were in the whole ninja/martial arts theme. The best comic movies for martial arts and fight scenes were Blade 1 and 2. Three was still better then most of the other movies but trailed off when they tried to make it more comic book in feel.

      • I would say the first fight scene between Abomination and Hulk in TIH was the best fight scene. All I could think was, “Holy crap, that is how Cap is going to fight”!!!

        • I agree about the first fight the last fight Hulk uses a chain around Abomination’s neck to take him down,with Abomination’s strength he could have just snap the chain,I saw that scene as great flaw.

    • I have to agree with you on the Warriors three battle with the Destroyer. It amgered me that they are some of the greatest warriors and all they can take is one rush on the destroyer. I do think that the character development in the marvel movies is rushed. And I have to disagree with kofi on hawkeyes appearence. Ya, I bet a lot of people are mad that they actually didnt see him in action, but I myself thought it to be a clever trick. I knew he wasnt going to shoot his bow. But from the moment I saw him pick up that bow I was excited. It makes people want more and will then go see the avengers to get that satisfaction

  13. I totally disagree. Thor is the 2nd best CBM ever, best being Dark Knight. How could you not feel the emotion when Thor calls his father a fool and an old man, or when Odin cast Thor out, or Thor, powerless, stands up to the Destroyer and is willing to die to protect his friends and the Midgardians? That was awesome. And Loki’s constant attempt to prove to Odin that he is Thor’s equal is heartwrenching and makes him a compelling villain.

    Btw I don’t care what you say, Iron Man 2 was awesome, better than the first. Iron Man was great but was overrated. Much prefer IM2 where you see Tony trying to save his life while all these enemies are coming to get him. SHIELD made sense as SHIELD is anal and want to keep an eye on a vigilante superhero and at the same time gave him the tools to save his life. These movies are awesome. Please try to enjoy the greatest era in CBM’s ever instead of constant whining.

    • Adam,

      Kofi was not whining, he brought up valid, logical arguments. And based on your past history of comments I see that you’re incredibly easy to please when it comes to superhero movies.

      Vic

      • I don’t think Adam is easily pleased about these movies. I understand where he is coming from about these so called let downs about these Marvel movies. If it was up to me all these films would be 3hrs plus to flush out the story and develop the characters, but everybody suffers from ADD nowadays and hollywood is scared it would be a turn off. But realize, these movies we as older men and women are watching is what we grew up reading as youngsters so this is pretty hamn cool.

  14. Wow, I said the same thing about “Iron Man” last week! The funniest parts of the movie were the trial and errors midway through, haha. The only thing I didn’t like about Thor was how he became stuck in Asgard and now it is up to S.H.I.E.L.D. to bring him back, really?

    • I was very confused with that too, but you did stay after the credits right? I believe that box will bring him back or Loki, it should tie in with Captain America with little more details. But the Avengers should officially get him back. Thats my guess but we will see how it goes with Captain America

      • Yeah, I can see how they want to use technology over fantasy or whatever. Maybe they will do the experimental gateway thing in “The Avengers” to bring Thor back to bet down Hulk or something.

        • My least favorite part was that Thor became humble so fast… If he is a god and he was arrogant for eons, then how would a week (or whatever) change that?

          And the destroyer would not have been beaten that easily…

          All in all, it was a very good movie… though the fight scene wasnt nearly as good as the hulks, but it was (in my opinion) just as funny as iron man…

          Out of 5 stars, i would give it 4 1/2…

          • Yeah I think all of them will have humor in it, because I know marvel doesnt wanna go dark, especially now that Disney watches what they are doing. But yes I really enjoyed it. Maybe they have some deleted scene with the destroyer…maybe, but i doubt it

  15. I couldn’t agree more with your assesent. It is PEOPLE and their INTERACTION with one another, their DEVELOPMENT that makes for a great movie. That is why Iron Man 1 was so great and 2 not-so-great (when War Machine and those mechanical infantry men showed up on screen, IM 2 died!).
    As for SHIELD, it’s not so bad. It could be a LOT worse. SHIELD was a bit more integrated into the story in Thor, but it’s presence in IM 2 wasn’t distracting. What bothered me more was the lightning fast wrap up to Tony’s ” disease”.
    Anyway, hey, so far, so good (I guess).
    Anyway you look at it, these Marvel studio films are ” Gone With The Wind” compared to what we were handed in the 70s and 80′s!
    All of them like “nails on a chalkboard!” (although ’76s Doctor Strange was OK).

    • In regards to the lightning fast recovery of the disease. I kind of see that sort of thing in thor. How he all of a sudden knows exactly what he has too l do.

  16. I really don’t think so. Im not a huge fan of Thor in the comics, but I saw Thor and I loved it! Maybe for die-hard fans of Thor maybe disliked it, but i think its not a problem, If people just want Thor and thats all i think you will get it in the sequels because thats what there for right? I don’t think it was a problem and I was just fine with it.

  17. Oh, and I didn’t like the fact that Balder wasn’t in it at all and Sif was just a female acquaintance. And no Enchantress? Dislike.

    • I agree… the enchantress should have been in this movie, and they should save the destroyer for the second movie…

    • Enchantress and Executioner might be the villains in the next film. Enchantress is probably more of a possibility, even though they already killed any notion of a relationship between Thor and Sif. His human girl will have to be the target of her ire.

  18. My only problem I had with Thor was Kat Dennings character. She was clearly supposed to be comic relief, but all her “jokes” were bland. Just a wasted oppurtunity of a character.Other than that I felt Thor delivered throughout. SHIELD didnt take away from the movie at all, if anything I was anticipating their arrival (I love the Marvel easter eggs that comes with them).

  19. Thor was pretty amazing I wish they would focus more on SHIELD though and explain more about it. I cant wait for The Avengers!

    • I’m thinking if all goes well with The Avengers, Rick, that we will indeed see a SHIELD movie. Which I think would be a really fun film.

      • Andy S,

        I kind of get the feeling that The Avengers will be a SHIELD movie.

        Vic

        • @Vic, LOL! You sort of have a point. But nah, but a S.H.I.E.L.D movie would be incredible and has so many characters and stories, it could very well be it’s own franchise. Origins of S.H.I.E.L.D, SHIELD VS HYDRA, SHIELD VS A.I.M, SHIELD VS S.W.O.R.D. Almost the whole Marvel U is connected to S.H.I.E.L.D in some way. As we’re starting to see, many AVENGERS actually started out as S.H.I.E.L.D agents first.

          • Yes but you need to remember (I cant remember if it was the main stream, Ultimate or both a dream or what) but the Avengers were run by SHIELD at one point.

            So in all essence the movie could be called SHIELD: Team Avengers or some such.

            SHIELD is a high up low profile agency in the Government. Think RED and other movies where all you hear is “we dont answer to anyone” etc.

            SHIELD will be PROBABLY be created in Captain America making him The First Avenger for SHIELD. (see what I did there ;) )

            So noticing a lean towards the bad guys being able to use items etc beyond those of normal men it was decided to create a Government organization to counter it. As the threat continues to rise (Hulk, Stark Tech, Aliens) the team needs to grow from foot soldier types (Hawkeye, Black Widow) to more powerful ones (Ironman, Thor).

  20. To answer your question: “Did ‘The Avengers’ Connection Hurt ‘Thor’?”

    No, it did not. ;)

    I think they pulled this movie of very very well – remember – Thor is a very difficult character to portray (props to Hemsworth and Branagh) and to put that character in a 2 hour movie is also very hard. (If they had an extra half hour I think the movie would have been even more fantastic).

    As to the S.H.I.E.L.D. factor… I also wanted to see more of it. I think they did the whole crossover thing very “neatly” and “subtly” (with the little hints and mentionings of characters – Stark and Banner). In IM2 they laid the butter on to thick, with Thor, it was just enough :)

    Also, just ask yourselves one question… if you had to make a Thor movie… honestly… would it be easy?… I think not.

    P.S. IM2 fight scenes were pretty awesome though… at least thats what I think. The “zen-garden” fight scene was amazing. The director said they got Samurai Jack writer/artist/creator to help out with that. That scene was the scene I took home with me. That was the ultimate part of IM2.

  21. I don´t think Thor´s character change was rushed.

    The key scene is when Loki visits him, telling him Odin is dead and his exile is conditional to prevent the war with Jotunheim.

    You can see that Thor is shocked and disturbed, humbly asking “Can I go Home?”. That´s when everything changed for him. The pain and grief in his voice, knowing he´s no longer worthy of Mjolnir, and now realizing he will never return home to his family and friends and must live as a mortal. If that´s not enough to change a man, I don´t know what is.

    Scenes like this one made this movie a winner, IMO.

    • @jennblade, great points indeed!

  22. Did it hurt Thor? It didnt HELP Thor.

    I think Thor was an origin story to prep him for The Avengers for the people that do not know the character and to sate the comic fans need for another comic book movie.

    Nothing more and nothing less. So it did what it was supposed to do.

    While I love my superhero movies I hope we dont see a glut. Pushing heroes out there just to have them out there.

    However you get the fanbois that want to push everything from Spiderman to the Zoo Crew onto the big screen. That is what will hurt.

    I enjoyed Thor and after leaving took it for what it was worth. A one shot comic letting me know the back story of a character that will be in a team book. That is why it appears SHIELD/Avengers may have hurt it.

    What hurt it more was (IMO) the alien angle and the whole fish out of water thing. I think I could have handled the whole story in Asgard showing the and building up the animosity between the gods….errrr aliens.. Then banish Thor at the end. Of course this would have delayed The Avengers. I guess in another essence I think it was a little rushed also…

    So maybe in the grand scheme of things The Avengers did hurt Thor.

  23. That was a very well written article. I would have to say, I agree with allot of your points Aknot. I thought Thor was cool for what it was worth but i didn’t think it was as epic as allot of people claimed. Maybe it’s because Thor isn’t high up on my list of superheroes that i like. I thought allot of it felt rushed and choppy in some spots.
    I do feel that he kind of changed fast but they did give a good reason so you could relate to it. I did enjoy it but there were many parts that kind of took me out of it. The Avengers connection was way better structured and more tolerable than it was in IM2. In my opinion, Thor was very good but not great.

  24. the last paragraph of this made me take a step back and eff my own face.. although i have to say the hawkeye cameo like MADE the avengers real for me

  25. I pretty much agree with this article, Thor wasn’t nowhere near bad but I didnt enjoy as much as I wanted to, especially the 2nd act. I hate when movies rush the love interest. Like he said, the shirt off, he is ripped and then they connect like that. It’s like c’mon on, really? No development really. To me the best part of the movie was Act 1, showing the backstory and just the relationship between Thor and his father, I appreciated that. So Act 3 wasn’t bad either when he returned. I guess I’m in the boat that prefers when he is home rather than Earth.

  26. I totally agree with your post. You articulated very well what I felt was lacking with the whole film! In the end, I just did not feel for the character of Thor and thus never fully appreciated his story. I hope they did better with Captain America and will do better in the other Marvel films leading to Avengers

  27. Kofi I have to disagree with you, the Avengers connection did not bring down Thor, if they did anything they where just easter eggs for the fans to get excited.

    • OK that posted before I was done with it but never mind I will continue…

      The Second Act was weaker compared to the other two acts but it wasnt so weak that it ruined the character buildup. The only thing it failed at in the second act or actually the whole movie was the inclusion of Hawkeye, they should have done better. His transformation from a**hole warrior to hero was a little rushed but it was fine, they could have edited the film to make the transformation worse but they could have edited it better (for instance the whole Hawkeye connection).

      This movie handled the connections better than Iron Man 2, and IMO it was better than Iron Man and I love that film. It set the bar of what the Marvel films can be even higher.

    • >>if they did anything they where just easter eggs for the fans to get excited.

      That only works if it also makes sense to people who don’t know anything about The Avengers. For example; if you don’t know who Hawkeye is, his cameo really doesnt make any sense. You have this secret government organisation in a modern world, who can’t afford to get theyre personel a sniper rifle, so they give him a bow…? Wasn’t Thor the medieval guy who went to a modern world instead of the other way around..? earthlings are using bows and medieval gods are sending hightech robots to the earth. That seemed a bit strange.

      • I have to disagree on the sniper rifle comment you made. There was a significant pause in the armory. They showed several rifles just waiting to be picked up but Bart took instead a compound bow.

  28. I have to admit I was amazed at what was essentially a collaboration btw. the EFX team and a Shakespearean director, handling the reality-based performances.

    Iron Man 2 didn’t have that. It seemed like Justin Theroux was flying high off his success with the Tropic Thunder script (which was clearly how RDJ convinced Favreau he could do the fast-track script Marvel was asking them to produce).

    I would also say that Kenneth Branagh did the smart thing in inviting J. Michael Strazinski not only for a quest appearance in the film (was he one of the hammer-lifting guys? Coudn’t tell.), but also to serve as a consultant for the entire film.

    I could somehow feel the stamp of a writer who really cared about making the comics pop up in the film as much as possible, in little details like the Hammer lifting scene, the New Mexico location (which tied in nicely w/ their film-based Tax Breaks, I’m sure!) , and the tempered down SHIELD presence.

    I can sort of see some of the article’s points about the 2nd act , but the fact is he wasn’t a part of the film-making process. To speculate on how it could’ve been different altogether seems less productive than perhaps speculating on what elements of the original script ended up on the cutting room floor – in my opinion.

    But hey – I’m not running a Film Blog so, what do I know? hahhahaha

    Overall: More epic than Iron Man.
    - Less humorous overall, but just enough to get me excited about watching RDJ & Hemsworth interact with one another.
    - The REAL Magic trick Marvel’s pulling on us is getting people to care about the Avengers in the first place. (I for one was never that big a fan)
    - I keep reminding myself that the Movie Industry is a business, rife with difficult decisions, sometimes made by committee, often justified only by whether they will bank box office opening weekend or not.
    - Thor was a surprisingly enjoyable, fun to watch, epic to behold film and I’m happy to report general audiences thought so as well.
    - I asked some elementary kids I teach if they enjoyed Thor. They all did!

    • “Branagh did the smart thing in inviting J. Michael Strazinski also to serve as a consultant for the entire film.”

      Yeah I noticed and was surprised when I saw in the credits that Straczynski had a story credit. I’m betting this won’t be the last time he pops up in Marvel movie credits either…

  29. Great article Kofi!!!! Many people have shown some good points on here. As far as the Hawkeye cameo, as someone else said, I don’t think that they wanted to showcase his talents just yet, as that would have been sort of a spoiler; they are saving that for the Avengers. If anything I think what would have made Hawkeye’s cameo make more sense was if Thor went into a furious rage after not being able to pick up the hammer and continued fighting a horde of agents and Hawkeye was forced to miraculously shoot Thor(between all of the action and agents) with a tranquilizer arrow OR one of the agents were still angry and came raging at Thor and Hawkeye shoots the agent with a tranquilizer arrow. Either way, I can’t wait too see Hawkeye do his trick shots in the Avengers.

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