With the release of a batch of new photos from ‘Thor: Ragnarok’, we now have a bit of a better understanding of what to expect from this latest entry from Marvel Studios.  The film has previously been described as a cosmic “buddy road trip” picture and the fact that it was directed by Taika Waititi, who has made his name working on comedies would seemingly indicate a much lighter film than fans are used to… and that may still be the case slightly, but new plot details have been revealed which give a fuller idea of ‘Ragnarok”s tone.


CRE-35028_C_R.JPGAs we already know, the events of ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ take place concurrently with those of ‘Captain America: Civil War’ and in part explain why the two Mightiest of Avengers were not present during that skirmish.  Where were they?  Mostly on the alien world of Sakaar.

As seen in ‘Thor: The Dark World’, Loki (Tom Hiddleston) was impersonating Odin, the king of the gods.  Unfortunately, his lax form of rule has resulted in the release of Hela (Cate Blanchett), who promptly flings Thor off to the planet Sakaar, which is ruled by the Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum).

Chris Hemsworth described this world as, “[Sakaar is] basically where every wormhole across the universe dumps out its trash, so you get people from all walks of life with all sorts of incredible abilities and powers. No one cares what prince or king Thor may have been in another world. Also, his strength is pretty easily matched with those he finds himself amongst.”

Thor finds himself in the gladiator ring, facing off against his fellow Avenger, The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), who has a new place in society on this savage world.  As Ruffalo says, “He’s much more of a character than the green rage machine you’ve seen in the Avengers movies.  He’s got a swagger. He’s like a god.”


Thor also encounters Tessa Thompson‘s Valkyrie, “a tough, hard-drinking” warrior woman who is hiding out on Sakaar.  Hemsworth explains, “Thor is a bit of a fanboy for the Valkyrie, the elite women warriors.”


Battling in the Grandmaster’s arena results in Thor getting a haircut and losing his trusty hammer Mjolnir, which he replaces with two swords.

Following the events on Sakaar, Thor and Banner/Hulk find themselves on the previously mentioned road trip, which director Waititi compares to “’48 HRS.’, ‘Withnail and I’, and even ‘Planes, Trains and Automobiles’.”  Speaking of comedies such as this, expect to see a new side to the stoic Thor.  After all, outside of the Marvel movies, Hemsworth’s highest profile roles have been in comedies like ‘Ghostbusters’ and ‘Vacation’.  Said Waititi, “He’s so good and underutilized in that department.  He’s legitimately one of the funniest things in this film.”

One more Marvel cinematic hero pops up in ‘Ragnarok’, Doctor Strange, played by Benedict Cumberbatch, who made his film debut last fall.

Doctor Strange comic con poster banner

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige said, “There’s not a whole lot that takes place on Earth in this film, and that’s one of the things that does.”  This scene was teased during the mid-credits sequence in ‘Doctor Strange’.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is now almost ten years and 14 films in and will be 16 films-deep by the time ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ arrives (with ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ and ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ arriving first).  It is expected that ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ will mark the end of what is known as Phase Three of the MCU. By this point, it may be time for something of a rebirth and Waititi says that ‘Ragnarok’ helps build toward that.

“A lot of what we’re doing with the film is, in a way, kind of dismantling and destroying the old idea and rebuilding it in a new way that’s fresh.”

Are you looking forward to a fresh take on the Marvel Cinematic Universe?  How do you feel about a lighter tone?

‘Thor: Ragnarok’ directed by Taika Waititi and starring Chris Hemsworth, Karl Urban, Jeff Goldblum, Cate Blanchett, Tessa Thompson, Jamie Alexander, Tom Hiddleston, Idris Elba, Anthony Hopkins, and Mark Ruffalo strikes theaters on November 3, 2017.

Source: Entertainment Weekly