Do different genders see films differently? We set out to see what a male and female movie reviewer each have to say about the same film.
Film: Thor: The Dark World
Synopsis (via IMDb): Faced with an enemy that even Odin and Asgard cannot withstand, Thor must embark on his most perilous and personal journey yet, one that will reunite him with Jane Foster and force him to sacrifice everything to save us all.
Sum up the movie in 2 sentences:
Fraisia: Significantly better than the first movie, Thor: The Dark World is an exciting, action-packed entertainer ready and waiting to please. I’d see it again just to watch Thor swing Mjölnir (his hammer) around and throw it at freaky dark elves over and over.
Edmund: Thor: The Dark World is kind of like if superhero movies meshed with Lethal Weapon. It’s not exactly the smartest thing out there, but it’s big, action-pack, and the rapport between the leads is absolutely hilarious.
What did you like about the movie?
Fraisia: I loved the amount of Loki in this film! Tom Hiddleston is everything right in this world and he totally steals the show. I also felt the writing was really strong and kept the story moving along steadily.
Edmund: After the first Thor, I was extremely happy to see that the focus was put a lot more on Asgard and the neighboring realms, leading to a lot more of the fantasy aspects being embraced in both the design and the action sequences of the film. The dialogue between Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston is absolutely hysterical and shows that this movie knows what we as the fans have always wanted from this film and have taken that as motivation to craft one of Marvel’s funniest movies to date. And also, that Portal-style final action sequence was phenomenal.
What did you dislike about the movie?
Fraisia: As much as I love Natalie Portman, I found her character to be kind of pointless. The movie didn’t really center on Thor and Jane’s relationship (not that it should have or anything) and anytime she was in a scene, she wasn’t really ever contributing to the plot. Jane seemed like a very throwaway character; there just to accomplish a small portion of the story. I don’t think we would be losing anything if they had eliminated her completely or even reduced her part to a small cameo and then moved on.
Edmund: The villains of the film (Malekith and his crew of dark elves) didn’t really have much personality and felt poorly developed, though never to the point of providing inadequate physical obstacles for our heroes. Also, a couple of the side characters (particularly Stellan Skarsgard’s character Dr. Erik Selvig) didn’t feel well-utilized enough to warrant their inclusion in this more fantasy-focused entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
What was your favorite part?
Fraisia: I loved watching Thor and Loki interact on screen with each other in this film. Again, Loki just killed it all together, but his relationship with Thor plays out in a really interesting way and I loved that. I also just really enjoyed the whole story in general in this film.
Edmund: Tom Hiddleston’s performance as Loki, particularly the character’s balance between humor and seriousness. Many of his same issues that were explored in Thor and The Avengers are explored greatly here, but always underneath the hilarious veil of shape-shifting and snickering that makes the character so fun to watch.
Would you recommend it to people?
Fraisia: Absolutely! Even if you hated the first Thor, I think you should definitely give this one a shot. The first Thor was rather ‘eh’ for me, but Thor: The Dark World killed it. Everything was so much better than the first one and it showed.
Edmund: I would absolutely recommend it as a fun popcorn thrill-ride, but I would more quickly recommend it to Marvel fans than the non-initiated as being a previous fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe certainly enriches the experience.
1 – Unworthy of Mjölnir, 2 – Odin Disapproves, 3 – Mere Mortal, 4 – Powerful as Lightning, 5 – Best in the 9 Realms
Special Effects: 5 – Best in the 9 Realms
Acting: 4 – Powerful as Lightning
Writing: 4 – Powerful as Lightning, mainly because of the unnecessity of Natalie Portman’s character Jane Foster.
Loki of Sassgard’s Level of Sauciness: 5 – BEST IN THE 9 REALMS OBVIOUSLY
Overall Film: 4 – Powerful as Lightning
Special Effects- 4 – Powerful as Lightning. The effects weren’t necessarily mind-blowing, but there were many cool, well-done action sequences that do look pretty awesome in their own right.
Acting- 4 – Powerful as Lightning. The acting as a whole is really solid (though a bit weak on the ends of the minor characters), but Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston absolutely steal the show with their bickering scenes together.
Writing- 3 – Mere Mortal. This is a somewhat of a Macguffin plot with a generic villain plot and under-utilized side characters littered throughout. However, the dialogue is pretty snappy, the third act is a nail biter, and the character relationships between the leads are absolutely spot-on.
Loki of Sassgard’s Level of Sauciness- 5 – Best in the 9 Realms. Loki here is as sassy and taunting as he has ever been, and the most enjoyable aspect of the movie is just how much of a cocky @$$hole he can be to everyone around him. He’s honest about the fact that he’s a swaggering jerk, and absolutely owns that in every scene he’s in. Plus, that shape-shifting sequence while Thor escorts him from prison is easily the funniest section of the film for me.
Overall Film- 4 – Powerful as Lightning. This is a really good and very fun action blockbuster that is the best that the MCU has offered behind Iron Man and The Avengers in my opinion.