Even the gods can’t save this so-so Marvel addition


Sam Lineberger

I’ve about had it with these Marvel adaptations featuring part-time Avengers.

There’s nothing wrong with movies based on comic books, but, as a viewer, there are only so many times that I’m willing to lower my expectations just to see an old favorite character fleshed out on screen.Thor-the-Dark-World

For what it’s worth, “Thor: The Dark World” was extremely well-cast. I can’t imagine a better Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Loki (Tom Hiddleston), Odin (Anthony Hopkins) or Heimdall (Idris Elba). Natalie Portman, Stellen Skarsgård, Rene Russo and Christopher Eccleston also look and speak their parts well enough.

The issue is that the script writing is excruciatingly boring.

Barring Loki, every character pretty much always does everything you’d expect. Norse mythology does rely heavily on the concept of fate, but “Thor: The Dark World” takes that a little too seriously.

Dr. Jane Foster, Thor’s “spunky” human love interest, is one character that really suffers from poor filmmaking. Though it’s already been done recently and famously in “The Lord of the Rings,” the filmmakers really should have expanded on why exactly Thor and Jane’s love is a forbidden one. Instead, it’s only as deep as the nausea-inducing lip-locking they indulge in during nearly all of their scenes together.

Thor himself also disappoints. As expressive as Hemsworth is, even he cannot save the God of Thunder from a storm of vapid one-liners.

Despite these instances, I’m not blinded to the charm of Hiddleston’s Loki, who only gets better with each film. Loki’s deceptive abilities are put to excellent use, as the viewers of the movie are just as likely to be tricked as the characters in the film world.

The problem is that, out of all the Avenger-associated Marvel films, Loki is just about the only interesting villain, not that he has much competition.

He’s the only one without a boiling desire to destroy the earth. In “The Dark World,” we have Malekith, who lusts after an ambiguous force called the “Aether,” which apparently possesses unlimited, if totally vague, destructive powers.

To change gears, the visual engineers of “The Dark World” did do an incredible job. The CGI explosions are as believable as can be hoped for, and the attack on Asgard was reminiscent of the more exciting bits of the latest “Star Wars” trilogy.

Still, it’s remarkably hard to like this “Thor” sequel. It’s not even that bad, per se, but rather utterly formulaic, despite Hiddleston’s noble acting effort as Loki.

With so much potential, “Thor: The Dark World” ends up as just another summer blockbuster.

Rating: two out of five stars

Story by Sam Lineberger, A&E Reporter