Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Thor review and more

I've seen "Thor" a couple of times so I am writing a review. All said and done I liked it better than the Iron Man films, although I consider those films a bit slicker and better fitted to today's world. Yet Thor takes on a more ambitious project, trying to bring to life a mythical god in the form of a superhero. And of course both Iron Man and Thor are members of the superhero team the Avengers. And that film will likely be quite good.

Thor came out in the comics in the early sixties. And with the revisionist tendency in comics, there was a Thor for each decade. The one I am most closely bonded with is the Stan Lee/Jack Kirby version of the '60's. I thought the film did a good job of acknowledging all the Thors. Jane Foster, nurse to Thor's mortal self Dr Don Blake, is now an astral-physicist. And Natalie Portman does a great job. And Chris Hemsworth's Thor is also good. Stan Lee loved to write this title because it gave him a chance to write Shakespearean dialogue. Not that a Norse God of Thunder has to speak like Hamlet. But at the time different and entertaining. And there is just enough of that along with Hemsworth's ability to have an immortal swagger and at the same time be lovable that makes the movie go. And his preference for mortal Jane over the goddess Sif is also interesting. In the comics Jane made her exit when given a chance to be an immortal she chose to not and Thor then went on to Sif.

The real scene stealer is Tom Hiddleston as Loki. He reminds us what makes evil so dangerous is how seductive it is. He is able to take Odin's wisdom and Thor's power and turn them against each other. It was always so in the comics as well. So definitely see the film if you already haven't.

May 13th was the 23rd anniversary of Chet Baker's mysterious death. Our own Bruce Peterson was in Amsterdam and e-mailed me photos of both the hotel Baker stayed in his last night and also the plaque that is in front of that building to this day honoring him. A very entertaining book is the Evan Horne mystery by Bill Moody entitled "Looking for Chet Baker". It is a very imaginative part fact and part fiction look at the mystery surrounding Baker's death. It's interesting to me that I discovered his music when I was the same age he was when he died. And I picked up the trumpet after a 40 year hiatus on May 5th of '07, right around the date of his passing. I want to thank Alex Kolbosov for a 5 cd collection with some material I had never heard.

I am including a video of some music Dennis and I did at the recent party at Barbara's house:


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