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Monday, November 18, 2013

Rainy Day at the Movies

I should have been writing yesterday, curled up and listening to the rain, but instead, I went to the movies. Finally got to see Thor: The Dark World, and loved it. Spoiler-free thoughts under the cut.

What I love about the Thor movies - when comparing them to the other Marvel films - is the Shakespearean family dynamic that underscores what is, on the surface, a sci-fi superhero flick. I could watch a whole movie dedicated to the small-scale turmoil of the household, and I wish there had been more time to expand on some of the more important character moments - though I suspect some of them were trimmed for the big screen and will show up on the DVD. Even so, in a plot-intensive movie, there was a smart allocation of humor (love Kat Dennings as Darcy) and drama (Tom Hiddleston is a scene stealer). The effects, watching it in 3D, looked truly touchable. It's worth wearing the glasses for this one.

I feel like you can enjoy this movie for what it is, but you can also take a deeper look, and start pulling back layers, realizing that, though Thor is the hero, some of his rationalizations and sacrifices are only heroic from one angle, and that there is a dark flipside to what he's doing. And though you can't give Loki a pass for all that he's done, you can understand the immense hurt that drives him, and it makes you care about him. There are flaws, and selfishness, in every character, and it creates a blend of ambiguity and conviction that makes these super-powered non-humans feel nothing but human.

I hadn't been to the theater in a while, and I'd forgotten how much I love seeing a movie that way! When Loki first appeared on screen, someone sitting behind me hissed "Yeeeeessssss" in this Gollum voice. *Moments when an audience makes it better* It was all he said the whole movie. Priceless.

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