I Bet You’re Wondering How Thor Got In This Cage

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I think I’m in a minority here, so you’re about to hear a rant.

greatly enjoyed Thor: Ragnarok. I thought it was a well made, wonderfully paced movie with some stellar performances and more than a few surprise tricks up it’s sleeve. Tessa Thompson and Cate Blanchet were sublime additions to the cast. (Though I missed Natalie Portman and Jamie Alexander, not to mention Kat Dennings.) Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston are fantastic as Thor and Loki, embodying these characters as they always have from minute 1. Jeff Goldblum is a delight. Idris Elba and Mark Ruffalo kill it.

Here’s what I didn’t love. I get that Guardian of The Galaxy was a colossal monster of a hit, and very unexpected, I get that Marvel Studios has never quite known how to pitch a Thor movie. Saying, “let’s make it as much like Guardians as possible,” though? I’m not sure that worked either.

The “jokey jokes” didn’t always land for me, especially in a series that I always felt had some excellent comedy in it. (The scene in the first movie where Thor demands a dog or cat big enough to ride ALONE cements there was always humor here.) The comedy that did work for me were things like Hulk claiming Thor is “Banner’s friend” rather than his. Loki’s discomfort at being in the vicinity of Hulk, as well as Thor’s test of throwing things at his brother to determine if he had corporeal form.

The larger intergalactic plot, of Thor on Sarac, while fun and cool, didn’t engage me the way that the Asgard stuff (Odin’s death, Hela’s invasion, Heimdall evacuating the city) did. That’s always been where the stuff I liked about Thor lived though. (Well, and in his relationship with Jane, which, I get, was a necessary casualty here, because Natalie Portman, the human being, didn’t want to be in the movie.)

Doesn’t mean I didn’t love Valkyrie (Seriously, Tessa Thompson ROCKS HARD!) or most of the big action set pieces. Or our requisite shirtless Hemsworth scene. I really liked it. Marvel doesn’t make bad movies, I just don’t think this one was as drop dead awesome as the rest of the internet does.

Still really good though.

Rankings!

  1. Wonder Woman
  2. The Big Sick
  3. Battle Of The Sexes
  4. Dunkirk
  5. Spider-Man: Homecoming
  6. Guardians of The Galaxy: Volume 2
  7. Thor: Ragnarok
  8. King Arthur: Legend of The Sword
  9. The Dark Tower
  10. Cars 3
  11. Pirates of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

Trailers!

Star Wars: The Last Jedi: First time seeing it on the big screen and OMG YOU GUYS! We’re so close, and it’s going to be awesome.

Black Panther: Do you wanna know what’s nice? Ryan Coogler found space for Michael B. Jordan in this movie. (Did we think he wouldn’t?) I’m not sure how to articulate how excited I am for this movie, because it’s deep in my gut.

12 Strong: Siggghhhh, I mean, I love this cast, so, there’s that. Fun that Michael Shannon gets to play a good guy. I may see it.

Movie Season, Moving Forward:

Here’s the deal y’all! I know I’ve been slack this year, it’s for a lot of reasons, but I’ve started a new day job! (This is an invariably GOOD thing. Trust me!) And I’ve got a Disney trip in just over a week! (WEE!) But, the good news is that the new day job is a lot closer to my apartment and pays me more money, so I’ll be able to close out movie season fairly strong, as the Oscar-bait movies come out. (There’s also a small independent theater walking distance from my apartment, so…yeah…)

Aless and I are trying to figure out what we’re doing for Justice League, as I’m leaving for Disney the morning after opening. We may delay by a whole week. (This is WEIRD for us, but you know, it’s DC, we didn’t even do Suicide Squad together…) Coco will for sure happen, and we’ve already got our Star Wars tickets.

 

Westworld Wednesday: “I dreamed of a story where I wasn’t the damsel”

We need to talk about Dolores, we need to talk about Maeve and we need to talk about agency.

You want to know what I didn’t expect when I started watching this show? That it would probably be the most feminist show I’m watching right now. (And I’m still watching Supergirl. Plus American Housewife.) This week, both Dolores and Maeve broke their programming. As it turns out, Dolores is still hearing commands from Arnold, the mysterious co-founder of the park, and Maeve woke up to talk to her tech.

Dolores has also changed out of her pretty blue dress, and has put on the duds of a outlaw, she commits a robbery with William and Logan, and even kisses William. (BOOO) But she’s thinking for herself and breaking out of her loop. She’s also seeing visions of herself, and I’m more and more convinced that Dolores is “the woman with the white shoes” that Bill, the old bar patron that Ford speaks to, constantly toasts.

Maeve spends most of the episode unconscious being worked on, but in the end she wakes up. The paralells of these two women is fascinating and fun. I don’t think that the show has passed the Bechdel-Wallace yet, but I have no doubt that it will get there and soon.

In less crazy awesome feminist news, Teddy is now riding with The Man In Black, who has taken it upon himself to become the villain of Westworld, because he believes the game never had a good enough one. Oh, God, we all know this guy and that’s what makes him such a great character. I’ve talked to, read pieces and comments by this guy for a long time, and I’m so deeply glad to see him portrayed as a monster on a large scale.

I’m starting to get into the things on the operations side too. Elsie is a great character and the fact that she’s refusing to accept the way things are (almost getting killed by a robot will do that) is another great step forward for women characters on this show.

The robots are gaining sentience, and that leads to these characters getting agency in a way that they haven’t had before, and I’m interested in seeing how this all moves forward.

In other news, it’s my birthday! I’m 29. I’m doing OK. I’m not freaking out. You’re freaking out. (Seriously though, this has been a good year, and I’m happy with how it’s gone.)