Thor: The Dark World

The god of thunder is back in a sequel that presents even more challenges which he must face in order to save his lovely Jane Foster and planet earth.

thor the dark world posterThor: The Dark World – the most recent film in Marvel’s ‘phase 2’ – gives us everything which we loved about the first film and adds more to it. The great thing about all these Marvel sequels being released – Iron Man 2/3 and Captain America: The Winter Soldier – is that, whereas the first film introduced the audience to the characters and their story, the sequels allow us to understand them more and realise what it is that they are actually fighting for.

The all-star cast is back, plus a few new faces, to play out a story much darker – hence the name – than the first film. Years ago ‘Bor’, the father of ‘Odin’ (Anthony Hopkins), fought to bring peace to the nine realms and apprehend a powerful stone called the ‘Aether’ from Malkieth – leader of the dark elves. He succeeded and hid the stone in the darkest of places where no being could find it. Unfortunately ‘Jane Foster’ stumbles upon a doorway which transports her to the location of the Aether and the power ends up connected to her body. Thor appears in his beautiful flash of colourful light to take Jane back to Asgard and attempt to help her, however things are not that simple. Especially now that the Aether has awoken Malkieth from his slumber to once again reap havoc on the nine realms. Thor must once again disobey his father in order to do what he feels is right, and team up with someone who he never thought he would team up with again…Loki. We get unbelievable effects, incredible fight and sorrowful scenes, diverse characters and inside jokes relating to Marvel’s previous ‘phase 1’. What more could you ask for?

Chris Hemsworth once again dons the cape as he stars for the third time as the Mjolnir-carrying god. He once more takes us on a journey with his velty-toned-booming voice, golden locks and muscles to match the Hulk’s. In the previous Marvel films where Loki (Tom Hiddleston) has been the villain (Thor/Avengers Assemble) the hatred between the two brothers has grown and grown, but as they team up in this film it is obvious that the love is still there. We really get to feel the emotions of Loki in this one, as an event happens which pulls at even his heart-strings.

What I found great about this sequel was that it let us see much more of the Asgardian characters rather than just the ones on earth. One of which is Heindall, played by Idris Elba, although we did get to see him partially guarding the realm doorway in ‘Thor’, this time we see what he is truly capable of. Long story short, he’s a real bad-ass.

We definitely did witness more screen time for the lesser-heroes of the film: Sif (Jamie Alexander), Fandral (Zachery Levi), Volstagg (Ray Stevenson) and Hogun (Tadanobu Asano). But two of the roles which make this film great are that of the antagonists Malkieth and Algrim, played by Christopher Eccleston and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. They do great at catching that villainous ‘I’m going to destroy the universe’ look, although a lot of that could be down to make-up, nevertheless their talents can not be overlooked. Eccleston has played many villains before (28 Days Later/Shallow Grave/G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra) so this was no problem for him.

Marvel’s ‘phase 2’ is really motoring on now, with Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy due in 2014. They are gearing up for a huge Avengers sequel (Avengers: Age of Ultron) in 2015, and if Thor: The Dark World is anything to go by then we have some extraordinary films in store for us.

thor 1

Just a little heads up to all you fans out there, we all know how Marvel love to stick a nice little post-credits scene at the end of every film as a taster for the next film in the franchise. I recently heard a rumour that because audiences have realised this Marvel have moved the scene up to literally at the end of the film. This is not true, there is a scene right at the end of the movie which hints at the plot for the ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’, but there is also one right at the end of the credits. So sit back and wait for your end of credits taster.

Shocking Saturday: The Cabin in the Woods

It has been a while since I’ve written a Shocking Saturday piece – mainly due to an internet problem, and I realise that it is actually Sunday now…but here it is.

For this Shocking Saturday I watched a film which I had been meaning to see ever since it’s release, I was attracted to the mixed reviews which I had heard from various critics and film fans alike. So I really had no idea what to expect going into it, especially after learning of an incredible twist. I was just hoping that it wouldn’t have an M. Night. Shyamalan feel to it (meaning his later films).

The only thing I can really say after watching it was that I thoroughly enjoyed this film, everything about is worked for me; the plot, the effects, the dialogue and the characters. I can’t put a bad word to any part of it, even the ending, which I was told by many would leave me saying “WTF!” I loved it, I thought it rounded it off perfectly.cabin

I will attempt to explain the plot without giving away any spoilers, to the few people who still have not seen this film. As with the usual story line, five friends decide to go on a trip to a cabin in the middle of a wooded area. Typical. They then begin to drink, do drugs and generally have a good time. Even more typical. After they read a passage in Latin out of a book they have found in the basement, they summon a long dead zombie family who begin to kill them off. Come on now this is getting ridiculous. However that is when everything is thrown onto its head, and we begin to delve into the real reason why these kids are here.

The Cabin in the Woods is a horror film fan’s dream, it just takes every aspect from a typical horror slasher/supernatural film and combines them into one. Mainly through the characters themselves, with using every typical stereotype which we have seen a thousand times before – the slutty blonde, the buff jock, the book-worm, the stoner and the innocent female protagonist. The film uses these to trick us into thinking that we are viewing just another run of the mill scary movie, but as the storyline develops you realise that there is much more to the story, something much more sinister at work.

It is such a smart and individualistic plot, which just makes the film even more enjoyable to watch. It is hard to guess where the movie is going to go next, and I just love that. I said that this film is a horror film fans dream, and I stand by that statement. Other than taking us on a journey which we never would have guessed, it also directly references many of the biggest films in horror, and the last 20 minutes will just have your jaw-dropping with excitement, as you attempt to comprehend what is happening on-screen.

Brought to the silver screen by two greats, Joss Whedon (Avengers Assemble/Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Serenity) and Drew Goddard (Lost/Cloverfield/World War Z). Just when you thought Whedon had given us the best part of his masterpiece with The Avengers, he comes out with this. Bravo, I tip my hat to you and am on the edge of my seat to see what is next in your film list. One of the reasons why the film worked so well was the actors who portrayed the characters, the typical characters (played by Chris Hemsworth, Kristen Connelly, Anna Hutchison, Frank Kranz and Jesse Williams) take us into their typical horror film, and characters played by Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford – including a guest cameo – take us out of it.

The Cabin in the Woods uses what we think about horror films these days and plays a twist on us, many horrors today are so repetitive that a lot of audience members will be bored within the first 15 minutes, as they are able to guess what happens in the entire movie. But here we are getting two films in one, the typical horror flick, but at the same time a completely new story going on in the background. This, along with its whimsical quip every now and then, comes together to create a truly great film in the horror genre. I believe that the reason many people, and critics, disliked the film was because they did not understand the idea which it was trying to get across, most of these viewers clearly just wanted another generic slasher flick, something which The Cabin in the Woods is not.

Tag Line: You Think You Know The Story.

Horror Rating: (:-O) (:-O) (:-O)

Star Rating:

Avengers Assemble

There has been a dream which every Marvel comic book fan has dreamt of ever since they were young, for the greatest team of the comic book world to be a reality…that dream has almost come true.

Joss Whedon has brought to the silver screen what could possibly be the biggest superhero film of our time. A film which includes not only some of comic book fans favourite heroes but also thanks to Hollywood, film fans favourites as well. Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk and Black Widow have been in some of the biggest superhero films of the last 10 years and ‘The Avengers’ brings them all together, including Hawkeye and Nick Fury, who are well known characters in the Marvel universe.

‘Avengers Assemble’ brings back the villain of ‘Loki’ from previous film ‘Thor’, who hatches a plan to take over the world and reign supreme over all humanity. Thankfully Nick Fury assembles the Avengers to try and foil his plot, however not all of the team are willing to cooperate at first which leads to a struggle for the heroes to become a team.

The film delivers our heroic characters in all their glory once again, Thor’s god-like booming voice, Captain America’s Role of command and Iron Man’s quirky personality. However since the film was put on the cards many fans have been wondering whether or not it will live up to the comic book origins, the answer is yes and no. The film delivers the heroes the way we know them best, giving us fast paced action , super human abilities and classic comic quotes such as when Captain America says to Hulk “Hulk…smash”. However there are few things missing from the film, such as Giant Man/Ant Man and Wasp who were two of the original Avengers, also there is one major aspect that the film did not bring forth which is that when we see Bruce Banner change in to the Hulk there is no heart pounding music and we don’t see him change like in the earlier Hulk films, where it was done so well.

Joss Whedon

Avengers Assemble stars Robert Downey Jr as Iron Man, Chris Evans as Captain America, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Scarlatt Johansson as Black Widow, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Mark Ruffalo as Hulk, Samuel. L. Jackson as Nick Fury and Tom Hiddleston as Loki. It was directed by Joss Whedon who brought us Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Serenity and The Cabin in the Woods.

The film ties together all the previous super hero films like Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Thor, Captain America and The Incredible Hulk which, if watched back all have aspects of the other heroes in them and certain characters who pop up in them all, including of course cameos by Stan Lee.

Comic book fans and film lovers alike will enjoy this film and there is a possibility of a sequel down the line, as we get a sneak peek at the end of the film. It has been a while in the making but the efforts of Joss Whedon have paid off…”If we can’t save the earth…you can be damn sure we’ll avenge it.”

The origin of ‘Avengers Assemble’:

Captain America: The First Avenger- At the end of the film the Captain is unfrozen into the 20th century to an anxious Nick Fury who is proposing a mission.

Iron Man- Nick Fury visits Tony Stark at home and explains that he is “not the only superhero in the world” and wants to discuss the “Avengers Initiative”.

The Incredible Hulk- At the end of the film Tony Stark visits General Ross whilst he is drinking in a bar and explains that he is “putting together a team”.

Iron Man 2- Agent Coulson (who appeared in Iron Man) from S.H.I.E.L.D reports the discovery of a large hammer (Thor’s) in the New Mexico desert.

Thor- ‘Selvig’ (the scientist throughout the film) is taken to S.H.I.E.L.D and is asked to study the Tesseract (the powerful blue cube from Captain America) by Nick Fury.

The Avengers…assemble.