I Am Thor, Reviewed

The rise, fall, and return of the shock-rocking Odinson.

Recently, a friend recommended that I watch the documentary about the metal band Thor entitled I Am Thor. Reaching back into my mental Rolodex which is full of useful information about bands, sports, comics, and wrestling and not junk like math or science, I found myself thinking of the great metal documentary The Decline Of Western Civilization Part II. “Thor was in that, weren’t they?” I asked myself. “Yeah, they were being introduced by that skeezy old club owner who tried in vain to get the crowd to chant their name. Wait…that was Odin, not Thor.”

My confusion of Norse god-based 80’s metal bands had left me without a clear picture of the band Thor. “Why were they deserving of a documentary?” I asked myself. Then it hit me. Here is an accurate representation of that very moment:




It hit me like a sledgehammer smashing through a concrete block. I have heard of Thor and so have many of you. Does the movie Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare ring a bell? Jon Mikl Thor, the lead singer for Thor, wrote, produced, and served as the main character in that wonderfully cheesy horror movie. That revelation propelled me forward into 2015’s I Am Thor.

Documentaries are only as interesting as their subject matter, and Jon Mikl Thor has led a pretty interesting life. The film delves into his days as a bodybuilder, variety show entertainer, male stripper, actor, and of course, metal singer. The documentary focuses mainly on Jon Mikl Thor, but does include interviews from band members, journalists, fans, and his ex-wife. Personally, I would have liked to have heard from other bands that had played with Thor during their heyday. It would have given a little more weight to the band’s history. No mention of their song with Seth Putnam, though.

I Am Thor manages to paint Jon Mikl Thor in a mostly sympathetic light. He speaks on his health problems, both physical and mental. The film uses a few clips of home videos which convey a sense of realism that can sometimes be found lacking in other documentaries. I say mostly, though, because there are some head-scratching moments. We see Thor playing the odd show with random musicians found online. We also watch as Thor plays with a punkish side band that includes a coat-tail-riding fanboy called “Thor & The Assboys.” It is at times difficult to endure Thor’s struggles, the diminishing returns of his shock rock antics, and his fading visions of grandeur.

There is a good amount of unintentional comedy and second-hand embarrassment throughout the film. Convention appearances, small crowds, and costume problems are just the start. Like a true underdog story, we are given glimpses of the band’s success as they travel through Europe playing festivals and making in-store appearances. By the end, the audience wants Thor to succeed. They want this man who believes in his vision so much that he has pursued it for over thirty years to succeed.

I Am Thor draws many parallels to another famous metal documentary, Anvil: The Story Of Anvil. Both follow a similar trajectory of rising fame, reaching the cusp of popularity, a crashing descent of missed opportunities, and a final glimmer of hope. Both unfortunately only briefly touch on why the bands did not succeed.

While it doesn’t quite reach the heartstring-pulling levels of Anvil, I Am Thor does contain enough emotion to make the audience care. I suspect that many of the people that watch this movie do not know who Thor is, but will come away wanting to learn more. It’s an entertaining and at times heartbreaking watch that provides a small peak behind the curtain of a storied and interesting band.

I Am Thor is on Netflix and available for purchase/rental on Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, Youtube and the official website.

(Image VIA)

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Published on: August 31, 2016

Filled Under: Metal, Reviews

Views: 630

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  • Janitor Jim Duggan

    I have no clue what Rock N Roll Nightmare is. I’ll give this a watch though.

  • That song with Seth Putnam is the best song ever. I play that song often. “Throwing Cars At People (On Coke With Thor)”


    • Joaquin Stick

      Serious hot take in the comments of that youtube video:

      “This song is far better thatn anyhting the Jackson 5 ever did…Yeah, I said it! It’s out there!!!!”

      • It’s best song ever! Of course it’s better than the Jackson 5!

      • Howard Dean

        My personal favorite comment on that vid:

        “Seth is gay for dying”

        Runner up:

        “This song eats babies and shits powerlifters.”

    • Señor Jefe El Rosa

      Haha, i love that song!

    • Howard Dean
      • WOAH!

        • Howard Dean

          Haha, yeah. Apparently dude heard a raccoon attacking his dog, so he ran down some steps, picked the raccoon up, and hurled it down another flight of stairs.

          • They can be really nasty. They used to get in our grill out on the porch at night and make a ton of noise while we were asleep. My dad eventually just waited outside one night and shot them all.

          • nbm02ss

            Ugh. Having indoor/outdoor cats for nearly my whole life I was always worried about racoons.

      • Dubbbz

        Whoever looped this gif did a really nice job.

        • Señor Jefe El Rosa

          What do you mean looped? The video ends after 5 minutes.

          • Waynecro

            Now I’m picturing a dumpster full of raccoons just off camera.

          • Señor Jefe El Rosa

            Like the scene in UHF when he’s teaching poodles to fly

          • Waynecro

            I’m going to have to watch that movie sober one of these days.

          • Señor Jefe El Rosa


          • A dumpster is the best place for raccoons to end up in.

          • Between dad and I we have trapped 20 or so this summer. They are terrible.

          • Waynecro

            Damn, man. I think I’ve only ever seen one or two raccoons in real life. Gophers seem to be the primary troublesome varmint ’round these parts.

          • Gophers or ground hogs?

          • Waynecro

            I’m pretty sure they’re gophers, but I’ve only seen their little snouts sticking out of holes in my backyard.

          • Howard Dean

            Raccoons haven’t been as bad around me this year as the possum and skunks. Those fuckers have been everywhere, trying to get all up in our shit. Stinky ass motherfuckers, and possum are fucking retarded.

            I think the relatively mild winter last year kept a lot of them alive that would have otherwise starved and/or fell victim to predators.


          • Commodus, Flusher Of Worlds

            Haven’t seen any around since we adopted Jasper The Murder Machine (our cat).

          • Kathleeneford4

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            On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
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        • Waynecro

          I was thinking the same thing.

      • Commodus, Flusher Of Worlds
    • sweetooth0

      A mighty track indeed.

  • Dubbbz

    I might check this out at some point. Thanks for the review!

  • Señor Jefe El Rosa


    I need to watch this, he’s like the Canadian ManOwaR.

    • Paddlin’ Rites ov Beargod

      Canadian Manowar… I don’t know if anything, ever, has been succesfully made so much less appealing by so few words.

      • Señor Jefe El Rosa

        DIE BY STEEL!!!

  • Waynecro

    Thanks for the great review, 365! I’ll probably check this movie out, even though it looks depressing as shit.

  • Stockhausen

    I enjoyed reading this. Despite absolutely no interest in the band, I may give this a watch when I’m Netflix divin’.

  • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

    Rock ‘n Roll Nightmare rules, so I’m pretty interested by this. Cool review man!

  • Thanks for the reading, 365, super zombie!

  • RJA

    I loved the Anvil movie – will definitely be checking this out – thanks Mr. 365.

  • Eliza

    I heard of Rock N Roll Nightmare and seen a few clips from it. It really looks like the definitive cheesy 80’s horror movie.

    • Commodus, Flusher Of Worlds

      I have RRN 1 and 2. The second one is beyond awful, though. I’d be amazed if Thor got paid any more than $20 to do that smoldering turd of a movie.

      • Eliza

        Out of all the movies they could’ve made a sequel to, they picked Rock N Roll Nightmare. Brilliant.

        • Commodus, Flusher Of Worlds

          Hopefully one day they’ll get around to making the one sequel we’ve all been waiting for: Master Of Disguise 2.