Monday, May 9, 2011


Science fiction action adventure

Natalie Portman: astrophysicist Jane Foster
Stellan SkarsgÄrd: the authority on Nordic legend Dr. Erik Selvig
Kat Dennings: intern Darcy Lewis
Anthony Hopkins: King Odin, ruler of Asgard
Chris Hemsworth: his son Thor
Tom Hiddleston: Thor's adoptive brother Loki
Idris Elba: Asgard’s gatekeeper, Heimdall
Colm Feore: Laufey the Frost Giant King
Clark Gregg: Agent Coulson of SHEILD

Unquestionably geared to the comic book and superhero loving crowd this
tale about gods and man and the battle between good and evil is entertaining enough but a tad too long at almost 2 hours. In part because of the too frequent battles that I felt very detached about, not really caring one way or the other about the outcome.

There are a few brief moments of comic relief but for the most part it zips along at a pretty frantic pace in a computer driven CGI world. The acting, what there is of it, won’t make the short list of Academy Award performances. In fact the acting won’t make the long list either.

for sequences of intense sci-fi action and violence.

Sunday, May 8, 2011



Mara: 6-month old lion cub
Layla: her mother
Fang: a male lion, leader of the pride
Kali: the leader of a rival group of lions
Sita: a mother cheetah

As one moviegoer put it “fantastic shots and a decent storyline… we just loved it”. And I share that opinion since most films of this nature simply show you a bunch of animals without a story that ties them together. The producers have taken the unusual approach to name the key animals in the narrative so you can easily identify them. As a result you can relate to them like your own pet and not just as some animal in the African savannah.

True to life there are instances when one animal brings down another but the film cleverly cuts at the end of the chase (thereby retaining the drama) and for the most part eliminates the gruesome details of the hunt. The film is definitely for the entire family.


Having recently returned from the Maasai Mara National Reserve, a major game region in southwestern Kenya where all this took place, I can truly appreciate the major challenges the producers faced to get the footage shown. Three questions come to mind:
1.. How did they get so close to the animals without spooking them off?
2.. How could they be in the correct position so many times?
3.. How did they get the orange sunsets? I tried my best without success.

For a chuckle or two stick around for the end credits listing the cast and crew involved in the production.