Sunday, November 5, 2017
April Sokol's Reviews of Thor: Ragnarok & A Bad Moms Christmas
This weekend was a big movie deal. Two big hit movies in the making both opened and so without further ado, to the theater I went.
First up was Thor: Ragnarok.
Thor: Ragnarok is the latest installment in the immensely popular Marvel Universe.
Directed by Taika Waititi
Run time is 2hr 10 min
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Mark Ruffalo, Cate Blanchett, Tessa Thompson. Karl Urban, Idris Elba and Anthony Hopkins
Thor Ragnarok is the seventeenth offering in the Marvel Universe. So the players are well known and broken in. While a lot of familiar faces abound (super quick fan girl shoutout to the adorable Matt Damon cameo) Thor Ragnarok introduces some new faces to the Marvel world. First and most impressive is the stunning Cate Blanchett. Cate chews her way through every second of screen time she's given. Gorgeous, powerful and absolutely deadly, Hela is just 100% joy to watch. I can feel all of next year's Hela Halloween costumes springing to life as I type this. We're also introduced to Valkyrie, a member of an all female warrior squad played to perfection by Tessa Thompson. I'm glad to see that someone seems to have gotten the memo that we are loving these strong woman characters. That high that so many women felt after Wonder Woman is going to be back after this.
Mark Ruffalo is back doing his thing as Bruce Banner/The Hulk. He's always so solid I hope people aren't taking him for granted. We finally get more of Idris Elba as Heimdall. Unfortunately he is STILL absolutely wasted in this role. The PG 13 rating felt correct as there was comic book violence but certainly nothing to genuinely frighten the little members of the audience.
Thor Ragnarok feels quite a bit referential to Guardians of the Galaxy for me. Same level of laughter. Funny quirky characters portrayed on a stunning canvas. Queue the fight scene with iconic 70s rock song and it's almost too on the nose....but I found that I still enjoyed the ride. This isn't new ground for Mavel. This is what a fast ball right down the middle of their fanbase feels like.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
And the answer to the question I always have at Marvel movies....2...there are 2 in credit scenes. You're welcome.
Next I moved down the hall to the highly anticipated (by me) A Bad Moms Christmas
Directed by: Jon Lucas and Scott Moore
Starring: Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, Christine Baranski, Susan Sarandon, Cheryl Hines, Jay Hernandez and Peter Gallagher
Running time of 1hr 44 min. It is Rated R for crude sexual content and language throughout, and some drug use
Ok America. It's time. We can't seem to agree on much of anything as a country anymore. But I think we need to come together as 1 nation and appreciate the sheer brilliance that is Chrstine Baranski. Has she ever been anything less than flawless...ever? I think not. However much she is making, it's certainly not enough. Can we make this a thing?
We pick up shortly after our last adventure with the suburban Moms as Christmas is upon them. Of course they're all over worked, over stressed, under appreciated and exhausted....aren't we all? Every single Mom in America is going to find something familiar in these women. Lots of laughs and another chance for a really beautiful friend tribe to shine here. The biggest take away for me is how these women are so very true to life. These are my friends and family. This is actually how we talk when we get together. I do not know a single parent who actually deep down believes that they're not screwing it all up in some way. It's nice to be reminded of our shared humanity.
If you loved the first Bad Moms movie, you'll almost certainly enjoy this as well. This is a wonderful case of a bunch of actors really seeming to enjoy their work. You will smile. You will laugh. And you will want to have drinks with your best friends ASAP when the credits roll.
Bonus points to those who stay through the credits to realize that Peter Gallagher is actually the best dancer of the whole bunch. Who knew?! I give A Bad Moms Christmas a solid 4 out of 5 stars.