Today, my nephew took me (!) to see THOR.
We've been going to movies - especially superhero movies - since he was about 8 years old, and we always have a great time, and this year promises to be just as good, with (besides Thor) X-Men, Captain America and Green Lantern to look forward to, as well as Harry Potter.
Anyhow, Thor was a hero I never expected to see on the big screen, so I was excited when it was announced that none other than Kenneth Branagh would be behind the megaphone for this project. Somehow, it seemed right.
The last time the God of Thunder (Marvel's version, anyway) made it to any screen in live format was, I believe, on TV in 'The Incredible Hulk Returns' in which a large actor with a small hammer played the character most unconvincingly.
The new version, happily, is epic, with the added bonus of an appearance by Rene Russo.
For those of you who've spent the last 18 months in Ulfheim, the Thunder God is portrayed by Chris Hemsworth, last seen on the large screen as one George Kirk, father of James T., in J.J. Abrams's Star Trek.
He looks like this:
The story centres on how Thor, son of Odin (Anthony Hopkins), is banished from Asgard and stripped of his powers for his arrogance in going to war against the Frost Giants. He will regain his powers, and the hammer Mjolnir, only when he has learnt humility and wisdom.
As we all should.
There are a number of comic moments as Thor finds his feet on Earth, with the help of physicist Jane Foster, played by the lovely Natalie Portman, aided by Stellan Skarsgaard and Kat Dennings (whose role appears to be so Jane can explain what an Einstein-Rosen bridge is), and intervention by the Lady Sif and The Warriors Three against the machinations of Thor's brother, Loki (God of Mischief) and Agent Coulson of SHIELD (remember him?).
In any event, it all works out without the use of iambic pentameter, setting up for a sequel and Thor's appearance in the upcoming Avengers movie.
There's also an appearance by Jeremy Renner as Clint Barton, aka Hawkeye, Marvel's answer to Green Arrow, but it doesn't detract from the story.
All in all, not a bad way to spend 114 minutes.
Thanks, Mitch - next one's on me...