Marvel Studios released three films in 2017, all of which ranked in the top ten films of the year. The last of which, Thor: Ragnarok, paired Thor and Hulk on a funky space adventure, somewhat bridging the gap between The Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy. And now, super fans can own the film to obsess over every frame and watch again and again.

The trouble begins when Hela (Cate Blanchett) arrives in Asgard, the long lost sister of Thor and Loki. Banished to a realm called Sakar and forced into slavery, Thor is forced to battle opponents, becoming reunited with Hulk and joining powers to rise up against their captors. But is the god of thunder any match for the queen of Hel?

Zany, wacky, and fun, Thor: Ragnarok is instantly the best in the Thor film series. Director Taika Waititi has a lot of fun with the subject matter and the film’s style has a uniquely 1980’s inspired design esthetic that is delightfully eye popping. The costumes are wild, the battles are epic, and there are so many hidden Easter eggs and details that fans will want to obsess over every frame.

This release has several hours of bonus features, one of which reveals that the plot of Thor: Ragnarok takes place alongside the events of Captain America: Civil War. This explains why both Hulk and Thor were absent from those events. Director Taika Waititi is as hilarious in his interviews and commentary as he is in the film (he plays Korg, the guy made of rocks). The bonus content also breaks down the comic elements that influenced the plot and art direction.

This review covers the 4K Ultra HD/Blu-Ray/Digital combo pack and all of the contents within. It’s also available in a Blu-Ray/DVD/Digital combo pack, as well as a standalone DVD release.

Bonus Features

Blu-Ray disc and Digital HD

  • Director’s Introduction (1:45) – Taika Waititi provides a hilarious introduction to the film.
  • Getting in Touch with your Inner Thor (6:40) – The cast and creative team discuss how Thor has evolved over the seven years he’s been part of the MCU.
  • Unstoppable Women: Hela & Valkyrie (5:58) – Cate Blanchette and Tessa Thompson are celebrated by their fellow cast members, with a look at their characters’ comic origins.
  • Finding Korg (7:35) – Taika Waititi, the eclectic director of the film, is immortalized in the film through the character of Korg, whom he voices and provided the on-set motion capture reference for.
  • Sakaar: On the Edge of the Known and Unknown (8:24) – The wacky realm of Sakaar is explored in this featurette with the creative team and how they celebrated the style of Jack Kirby with the art direction.
  • Journey into Mystery (5:48) – The history of Marvel Comics is celebrated in Thor: Ragnarok and this featurette reveals the film’s inspirations.
  • Gag Reel (2:17) – The cast goof off and make mistakes in this blooper reel.
  • Team Darryl (6:09) – When Thor moves out, the Grand Master moves in to Darryl’s apartment. This short created just for this home video release is hilarious!
  • Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years – The Evolution of Heroes (5:24) – Kevin Feige and the cast of all of the films look back on ten years of the MCU and ahead to Avengers: Infinity War.
  • Deleted Scenes (5:43) – Nine deleted/extended scenes are presented with a “Play All” option or individually.
    • Extended Scene: Thor Meets the Grandmaster (2:13)
    • Extended Scene: Stupid Avengers vs. Tiny Avenger (2:07)
    • Extended Scene: Grandmaster and Topaz (1:24)
    • Skurge Finds Heimdall (0:44)
    • Hulk Chases Thor through Sakaar (0:55)
  • 8-Bit Sequences – Two “previs” sequences were made in 8-bit and are offered for your retro enjoyment.
    • Sakaar Spacechip Battle (0:59)
    • Final Bridge Battle (2:17)
  • Audio Commentary (2:10:27) – Director Taika Waititi leads this hilarious commentary track, making it obvious where the film gets its silly humor from. He points out hidden cameos and the inspiration behind many elements in the film. His daughter makes a cameo and asks to change to Moana. It would have been hilarious if that actually happened mid-commentary.

Digital Exclusives

  • Thor and Hulk: A Galactic Adventure (3:00) – The buddy dynamic of Thor and Hulk is explored in this short featurette.
  • Deleted Scenes
    • The God of Thunder and the Sorcerer Supreme (2:25)
    • Execution Interrupted (0:58)
    • Travel to Asgard (2:19)
    • Race to the Wormhole (1:16)

Video

This was my first experience with 4K Ultra HD and to say that I was blown away is an understatement. I didn’t think this format could look much better than Blu-Ray, but I was wrong. Don’t get me wrong, Blu-Ray is a fine format that is a huge step up from DVD. But where the 4K transfer really shines is with its color spectrum, which is even more bold than Blu-Ray, as well as high action scenes. Comparing the scene where Thor, Loki, and Hela fight during the transport from the Rainbow Bridge, nothing looks blurry or soft on the 4K disc, whereas the Blu-Ray looks less impressive in comparison.

Still, the Blu-Ray disc provides a dazzling presentation. Details are crisp and the color spectrum is handled with Disney’s typical expert level of care. While my first in-home 4K experience elevated my enjoyment of the film, Blu-Ray still offers a satisfying experience.

Audio

On 4K Ultra HD, audio options include English 7.1.4 Dolby Atmos, English and Spanish 7.1 Dolby Digital Plus, English 2.0 Descriptive Audio, and French 5.1 Dolby Digital. My home is equipped with 7.1 and I watched the film with the Dolby Digital Plus track. It’s a robust mix and the action scenes really pack a punch. The excellent score by Patrick Doyle fills the rear speakers throughout most of the film, immersing you in Thor’s world.

The Blu-Ray includes English 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, 2.0 Descriptive Audio, plus French, Spanish, and Porugues 5.1 mixes.

Packaging & Design

The 4K Utra HD release of Thor: Ragnarok comes in a black Blu-Ray size case with disc holders on both sides of the interior. The 4K disc contains disc art that replicates what is on the cover of the case. The slipcover is embossed with holofoil accents. Inserts include a Digital Copy code and a flier for Disney Movie Club.

The Blu-Ray disc opens with an ad for Black Panther. Selecting “Sneak Peeks” from the main menu plays additional ads for LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2, Marvel Contest of Champions, and Marvel Future Fight. The menu features scenes from the film set to the score.

Final Thoughts

Thor: Ragnarok is a ridiculously fun film that looks amazing on 4K Ultra HD and Blu-Ray. There are some insightful and hilarious bonus features, including deleted scenes and a new short. The bonus features also take a brief look ahead at Avengers: Infinity War and this film is presumably required viewing leading into what I’m sure will be the biggest film of 2018.

 

Alex has been blogging about Disney films since 2009 after a lifetime of fandom. He joined the Laughing Place team in 2014 and covers films across all of Disney’s brands, including Star Wars, Marvel, and Fox, in addition to books, music, toys, consumer products, and food. You can hear his voice as a member of the Laughing Place Podcast and his face can be seen on Laughing Place’s YouTube channel where he unboxes stuff.

 

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