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Posted at 10:14 PM ET, 04/23/2013

‘THOR: THE DARK WORLD’: As trailer lands, new director brings the hammer down with dark menace

AS THIS GAME OF TRAILERS goes, Marvel Studios sees DC Entertainment’s two Oscar-winning narrators — and aims to raise with Chris Hemsworth’s voiceover.

Last week, Warner Bros./DC released a “Man of Steel” trailer that heavily featured the distinct voices of Academy Award-winning grizzled veterans Russell Crowe and Kevin Costner. On Tuesday, almost as if cribbing from a similar playbook, Disney/Marvel released its “Thor: The Dark World” trailer — and relied on the Oscar-winning throats of stars Anthony Hopkins and Natalie Portman.

On that score, we’ll call it a draw between the dueling sneak-peeks.

The “Thor” sequel trailer is a full minute shorter, but there’s still plenty to take away from all the action. Let’s break it down:

As the Thor franchise loses Kenneth Branagh from the director’s chair and gains Alan Taylor, the God of Thunder appears to be in good hands.

And judging, at least, from this mere two minutes of footage, Marvel Studios is comfortably in cruise control with the launch of Phase 2.

In this peek is any indication, Taylor is applying a darker tone overall. With any luck, Marvel Studios may have hit one out of the park by handing the reins to a man who has directed multiple episodes of HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”

So what do we see in the trailer?


Hemsworth returns, hammer in hand. (Mark Fellman / MARVEL - .)
An ancient evil threatens everything. Thor (Hemsworth) comes back for Jane (Natalie Portman) and brings her to Asgard — though Darcy (Kat Dennings) returns for the sequel, as well. Sif (Jaimie Alexander) doesn’t seem to be too pleased with Jane’s presence (casting a pretty intense evil eye). And Jane — to Thor’s great displeasure — may be in grave danger.

There’s also, of course, a battle for Mjolnir. Bring down the hammer.

The trailer culminates with a desperate Thor turning to his imprisoned adoptive brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), for help.

“You should know, that when you betray me. I will kill you,” Thor says.

“When do we start?” says an unflinching Loki.

Most of the trailer teases the possibilities of providing what everyone wants in a sequel: a better movie. We get a more menacing tone, more action — and Taylor apparently won’t sell us short with that core conflict between Thor and Loki.

The trailer’s closing moments convey the love and hate between the Asgardian bros, and Hiddleston appears primed to steal a few scenes.

With that, we have hope — because watching Thor and Loki go at it never gets old.

By David Betancourt and  |  10:14 PM ET, 04/23/2013

Tags:  superheroes, marvel film

 
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