Sibling rivalry, excessive use of brawn and brains, and the occasional wolf monster makes for one interesting religion. You could wear a helm with wings or sport a giant foam bat but make it easy on yourself and just drink your favorite mead as you venture into the realm of Thor and beyond: movies about Norse gods.
In any comic book based movie there will be some amount of nerd rage but once you get past any inaccuracies or liberties the screenplay for “Thor” takes, you’ll find yourself in the land of boring. Thor isn’t all that weak on Earth even if stripped of his godliness, Loki gives off the radiating aura of weasel rather than pure evil and Jane Foster swaps back and forth from scientist to love struck cartoon so many times you’ll lose track. Watch Thor dismantle S.H.I.E.L.D agents at the site of where Mjolnir has landed and you’ll be left wondering why you should care about that character at all if at his weakest he’s still a top of the line mortal.
“Son of the Mask”.
Bad enough to either turn you away from Norse gods or turn you towards a whole new religion just to make the bad man go away, “Son of the Mask” is Norse gods done weird. With Loki going through daddy issues with his father Odin, the film is set up to be entertaining but drops the ball over and over in using the powerful mask for more visual gags than any storyline promotion. Just watch what happens to the family dog when it takes its turn with the mask and you’ll see one of the many scenes that went goofy and unnecessary in place of something comical.
Siblings Roskva and Tjalfe get the pleasure of hosting Thor and Loki one stormy night at their home. Tjalfe gets pranked by Loki and earns Thor’s wrath over his newly misshapen goat buddy, which earns the punishment of being a servant in Asgard. Roskva goes with her brother and the story kicks off. “Valhalla” is entertaining animation that doesn’t bother to shy away from some of the darker parts of the gods, like the resurrection of the constantly eaten goat, in this children’s movie. Roskva’s entreaty of Odin during his chess match is a mix of the power and humor that animation conveys with the right lines and strokes.
“Thor: Hammer of the Gods”.
Drop everything but newborns and your papier mache art and go find “Thor: Hammer of the Gods” so you can burn the benchmark for how bad Norse and werewolf mythology can be portrayed. Thor and company go hunting for Mjolnir and encounter an island ruled by the Norse god Fenris and a bunch of capri pants wearing werewolves. The destruction of the bridge to stop the werewolf onslaught in “Hammer of the Gods” is a teeth grindingly slow scene where you end up hoping the werewolves make it just so the film can end.
The good old '90s when archeology was still unleashing monsters, horrors and gods upon the unsuspecting populace is when “The Runestone” was born. You should love any movie that explains that the Vikings journeyed to North America to bury the dangerous rune stone much like today countries ship their toxic materials to far off places as well. Although Tyr eventually battles Fenrir, the best fight scene is the one in which Fenrir is killing a victim at the art gallery while patrons critique the performance. That one-sided battle should go down as one of the top five funniest horror scenes in any Norse god film.