Snapshots - #42: Thor: Ragnarok, Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool, LBJ

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Thor: Ragnarok (2017), (♦♦♦♦½): Thor has saved earth twice by now and has, for the last two years, wandered the universe searching for infinity stones. He hasn't found any. He has, however, become prisoner of an enemy of Asgard, Surtur, who tells Thor that his visions of Asgard engulfed in flames is a premonition of Ragnarok—the destruction of Asgard, which is already in motion. Thor frees himself and arrives at home to find Loki sitting on the throne, passing as Odin, and neglecting his duties to protect the Nine Realms. With Odin's exile, Asgard's enemies have been reassembling, but Odin's death may just free Hela, a goddess against whom neither Thor nor Loki are enough.
It was in Thor: The Dark World where Loki, an antagonist, first threatened to steal the show. He became the villain that Marvel fandom loves to hate. While Loki is at his most charming in this film, the director, with the help of a sparkling screenplay, has very much exploited the great chemistry of t…

Captain America: The First Avenger (♦♦♦♦)

It is 1942. Europe is amidst WWII. Nazi Germany is in need of defeating the allied troops and for that purpose they engage in research for advanced weapons and related stuff. As part of the Hydra program, a German scientist (Stanley Tucci) develops a serum capable of altering body cells to create super soldiers. Before it is ready, Hydra chief Johann Schmidt (Hugo Weaving), a power-hungry man, injects himself the serum and becomes sort of a mutant (this movie’s villain). The German scientist defects to the U.S. where he has the chance to perfect his invention and recruits Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), a scrawny, young man intent on entering the army. When Rogers is injected the serums, he becomes a super version of himself; however he is warned that his best qualities will be magnified as well as his worst.

The army doesn’t take him seriously, but a U.S. Senator gives him the opportunity to help the troops by raising money for the cause. Wearing a colorful costume, Rogers becomes Captain America. During a tour abroad to entertain the troops, Rogers learns than there’s an American battalion that has been taken captive by Schmidt, and he decides—with the prodding of Agent Carter, his love interest--to put his newly gained skills to good use.

Dominic Cooper, Tommy Lee Jones and Derek Luke co-star.

Agent Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell, The Pillars of the Earth) is so poised that she even wears red lipstick to battle. Schmidt is assisted by soldiers with the look and the energy of Darth Vader. The plane in which Schmidt makes his escape looks like a B2 bomber (pretty advanced stuff for 1943!)

Rogers is hotter than hell, and his screen presence resembles that of another superhero (Christopher Reeve as Superman).This movie is a lot of fun, with subtle jokes and plenty of war action to please the audience. What I liked the most was the historical background given to the story, which makes it kind of plausible.

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