***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!
Thor: Tales of Asgard - 3 out of 5
In an effort to promote the live-action adaptation of the Norse God of Thunder Thor, Marvel released this direct-to-DVD animated feature that took the son of Odin and showed him as a teenager and the time before he lifted Mjolnir over his head to crack open the skies.
Now I like the character of Thor--I like most of Marvel's characters but it seems, at least to me, that Marvel has been putting too much effort into their live-action films. They seem to be more preoccupied with creating superior quality for their films in an effort to draw mass audiences and their animated features and their comics have suffered for it. Now I haven't been a fan of their books for over a decade now as I feel they have phoned in the storylines but it seems the lackadaisical approach I see them take for their comics has become more and more prevalent in their direct-to-DVD animated features. When these features started, they came out of the gate on FIRE! Ultimate Avengers, The Invincible Iron Man, and Doctor Strange all were amazing but then it seemed they stopped trying. Ultimate Avengers II was boring, they wasted the amazing character of The Hulk to focus on the generic Wolverine in Hulk Vs. and I just plain had to say, "WHAT THE FUCK?!?" when it came to Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow. Meanwhile, DC is pumping out kick-ass animated movies one after another. It was obvious that this movie was made to just get geeks' money without a single care for quality.
The animation is weak--UBER-weak. First off, the style looks like generic American-style anime (Thor looks like Ken from Street Fighter with longer hair and, for some reason, has the voice of a 40 year old man) and the animation itself is flat and static. While in the earlier releases of Marvel's animated movies, there was creativity coming in like nobody's business. Integrating both 2D and 3D animation all the while creating a composition of amazing scenes and direction. This feature, however, looks like a cheap Saturday morning cartoon with no real direction. Scenes play out with no real "camera movement" and a heavy emphasis on a LACK of action. These static scenes cause the film to be extremely boring but this isn't helped by the movie having a severe lack of emotion. Even more offensive about this is the fact there is literally a wealth of material they could be using to give these characters some life and feeling. For Christ's sake, Loki, Thor and Odin are a family of gods.
If you're a fan of Marvel or Thor, you might want to give this a chance--and this movie is worth only one chance. Because Marvel put all its attention on the live-action films, Thor: Tales of Asgard becomes another in a line of half-assed animated movies that is quickly become the norm for Marvel. Well, at least DC is still kicking ass with its animated films.