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Thor IThe sequel to “Thor” was released this past weekend, and it seemed to fulfill a huge need for a great Superhero movie for this year. Yes, we got “Man of Steel” in the summer but that was slightly disappointing, as was “Iron Man Three” that came out in May (check my YouTube reviews for both, here and here). I’m happy to say that “Thor The Dark World” exceeded expectations and delivered in various aspects. Just like the first “Thor”, the movie was a great mix of action and humor and sci-fi and fantasy with some great performances and some really amazing and unique visual moments.

In the post-“Avengers” world, Thor (the amazingly attractive Chris Hemsworth) has been busy in Asgard making peace in the nine realms while on earth his love interest Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) has been trying to move on with life and forget about her scientific research. Things get a little strange when the nine realms begin to align, creating portals to different worlds, and Jane finds herself lost in and underground cave and infected with the dangerous liquid stone Aether that has been locked away for centuries. This re-awakens an Asgard enemy Malekith who is hell bent on destroying the world, and the action ensues.

All of the familiar faces pop up, Thor’s “adopted” brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) is great at bringing some humor into his maliciousness, Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgard) is hilarious as the nutty professor (which makes sense given what happened to him in “The Avengers”, and like in the previous “Thor” Darcy (Kat Dennings) provides her quirky comic relief. Idris Elba, Anthony Hopkins, Rene Russo and a host of others reprise their roles as well and there’s even a small cameo from Captain America’s Chris Evans (a very funny cameo). The whole movie felt very familiar because we were getting back to the people we came to love (or hate) in the first film, but with a new plot line and more action. And this is why action sequels tend to be better than the firsts, the originals set everything up and the sequels are allowed more time for action and story and “The Dark World” definitely falls in line with some other great action sequels.Thor II

Chris Hemsworth is amazing and the perfect person for this role with his balance of charm, brute and sincerity. I couldn’t imagine anyone else making this character seem so real and so likable, and definitely no one else could be as sexy in subtle moments like a simple holding of a hand or a smirk. It should also be noted that this sequel was in the hands of a new director Alan Taylor who I feel did a great job, although one complaint might be that the CG was a bit over-used at times. “The Dark World” was just a fun time at the movies, not too serious but not too corny, a nice balance which I feel “Man of Steel” and “Iron Man Three” failed at.