Movie Review: 'Thor: Love and Thunder' - Uneven But Fun

thor 4 love and thunder marvel movie review

THOR: LOVE AND THUNDER continue the quirkiness that started in RAGNAROK but the Taika Waititi’s MCU follow-up is all over the map as far as tone. That’s not to say LOVE AND THUNDER isn't as fun but it takes a more somber turn for the final act. Natalie Portman doesn’t disappoint, earning the Mjolnir, and Christian Bale is a worthy villain as Gorr.

Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is enjoying his time as a Guardian of the Galaxy when we meet up with the God of Thunder in the fourth Thor movie. When Gorr the God Butcher starts killing off supreme beings, Thor enlists the help of King Valkyrie, Korg, and the Mighty Thor aka Thor’s ex-girlfriend Jane Foster to stop him.

Aside from directing, Taika Waititi also wrote the screenplay along with co-writer Jennifer Kaytin Robinson (Hawkeye). Fans of RAGNAROK will find humor in the Waititi sequel while those who disliked Thor’s comedic and silly turn will certainly dislike LOVE AND THUNDER even more so.

LOVE AND THUNDER is even sillier than the previous THOR outing, and the first half of the Marvel movie will have audiences giggling non-stop over a Guns N’ Roses soundtrack. The problem is in the latter part of the movie when it turns a bit more serious. The tone is uneven between the first two Acts and Act 3. It takes you out of the movie, feeling like you’re watching a different kind of film.

There’s no short supply of gags in THOR: LOVE AND THUNDER, and some get old quickly but the love triangle between Thor’s Mjolnir and Stormbreaker has to be one of the funniest bits in the movie. Hemsworth nails down the jealous lover pining for his ex-hammer who’s betrayed him with his ex-girlfriend.

Portman returns as Jane Foster and assumes the role of Mighty Thor. The actor earns Thor’s old hammer and can wield the weapon just as well as Thor. Portman’s action scenes are on par with Hemsworth as a formidable ally. However, her new powers are sidelined by a plot revolving around Jane that serves as a buzzkill. The high of seeing Jane kick butt is countered by that subplot which was a bit of a bummer.

Christian Bale as Gorr the God Butcher in Thor Love and Thunder

Gorr the God Butcher has zero humor which offsets the silliness of LOVE AND THUNDER. Christian Bale brings gravitas to the villain. Bale has played every imaginable role and transformed himself physically and mentally. Luckily here, the actor morphs into character through a costume and make-up rather than subjecting his body to drastic changes. Bales’ Gorr is terrifying and the story sets up his origin story quickly to understand who Thor is dealing with.

Chris Hemsworth is not given enough credit for his comedic timing as Thor. Audiences saw a bit of that in the first THOR movie (2011) but together with Waititi, the actor nails that balance of cockiness, charisma and comical to perfection. That’s not always the case as in his himbo turn in 2016’s GHOSTBUSTERS or the disastrous MEN IN BLACK: INTERNATIONAL.

Russell Crowe brings us a silly version of Zeus. It’s a different take on the mythological god, and Crowe makes it fun.

Don’t expect the Guardians of the Galaxy characters to play a big role in LOVE AND THUNDER. Starlord (Chris Pratt), Groot, Rocket (Dave Bautista), Drax and Nebula (Karen Gillian) are wasted in this outing but given how ENDGAME wrapped with Thor joining the crew, their presence merely served to disengage Thor from the group.

When the film opens, the two post-credit scenes will blow up the internet. While it’s tempting to reveal one in particular because it involves an actor people love, it’s better to be surprised. The other scene opens up the possibility of perhaps a spin-off.

So stay offline until you watch the film in movie theaters starting Friday, July 8. 

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