Chris Hemsworth returns as Thor in his fourth solo appearance as the God of Thunder. This time he has a little help from his ex-girlfriend Jane Foster. Jane, played by Natalie Portman, also has the power of Thor – and they’ll need both of them to stop Gorr the Godslayer from destroying all the gods in the universe.
Thor: Love And Thunder doesn’t have a great story, but it’s a fun movie. The plot seems rushed at times, and there were a lot of things I felt the film would have been better off without. But there are just enough good parts that made me overlook the crazy parts. In the end, you want to leave an entertaining movie, and that was me. As far as Thor movies go, I’d say they’re definitely better than Thor: Dark World, but not as good as the original Thor movie. Whether you like it more than Thor: Ragnarok may depend on whether you prefer more Hulk or more Jane Foster.
At first I worried about Thor. His character has become a bit of a buffoon over the last few films and at times he still is in this one, but I feel like there are times in this film where his story gets very deep and his character matures, instead of retiring. I was also happy to see that this is still Thor’s film. Although there is a lot of Jane Foster and Valkyrie to be seen, it is not her film. They are just supporting characters and very good ones too.
I was also concerned about Natalie Portman as Mighty Thor. Portman is kind of a petite actress; she’s 5′ 3”, and Jane Foster’s Thor in the comic is an intimidating character. But Portman made it. She’s a great Thor and also a great Jane Foster and I’d love to see more of her Thor in the MCU. In the previous films that Thor and Jane both starred in, I always felt that they didn’t have much chemistry. Not this time. In fact, some of the best scenes in the film revolve around the two and you get the feeling that they really do love each other. I think if those scenes weren’t in the movie I would have rated it a lot lower. And there are several such scenes throughout the film, and they are all written and performed to perfection.
Few films are perfect, and this film is no exception. Probably the biggest problem some will have with this movie is that it’s very comedy-heavy. Marvel usually does a good job of putting comedy into their films, but at some point they have to realize that there’s a main story to follow, and sometimes comedy becomes a distraction. We could have done without the goats and some silly scenes with Thor and Stormbreaker. Korg could have stayed here too and I don’t think anyone would have missed him. And the Asgardian children should have stayed in their beds and not been a plot device.
Christian Bale joins the cast as Gorr the God Butcher. Bale usually performs well. But he’s just fine with it. You don’t see a lot of battles from the God Butcher. Most of the killings are done off-screen and we have to imagine what was done, which is kind of disappointing. Maybe they toned it down to be more family friendly, but I would have preferred more slaughter than the comedy overdose we got. And the character of Gorr once again highlights a major problem for Disney. All of their villains need to be portrayed as sympathetic or misunderstood by society. Give me a creepy villain who in the end just wants to win by destroying everyone who gets in his way. I don’t want to meet Gorr in a group therapy session one day.
I will warn parents that part of the plot has to do with all the children of Asgard being kidnapped by Gorr and I think some of these scenes might be scary for some young children. None of these children are like young Leia from the Obi-Wan Kenobi series. They are held in a dark place and are all scared, often screaming in fear. Parents know their children best and know what to do with them. I’m sure it’s ok but I thought I’d mention it.
As usual with all MCU films, there are after-credits scenes (and this time there are two of them). And for a change, both are quite good. So I’d stick with both when introducing a potential hero or villain for the inevitable Thor 5. The final credit scene is a beautiful epilogue to the film.
Love and Thunder is a fun movie, but at times it comes dangerously close to parodying a Thor movie rather than a real Thor movie. I would say Thor and Jane’s relationship saves the film from its comedic flaws with some great performances from Hemsworth and Portman. It’s not the best MCU film of all time, but it’s not at the bottom of the list either.
I give Thor: Love And Thunder 7/10.
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