Thor: Love and Thunder Review: Chris Hemsworth's movie has tons of thunderous love, but a lot less laughs

Thor: Love and Thunder can't hold a candle to Thor: Ragnarok's unorthodox brilliance, nevertheless, the Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman starrer still shines because of its trustworthy cast. Read Pinkvilla's review below.

Updated on Jul 08, 2022 09:57 AM IST  |  58.3K
Thor: Love and Thunder Review
Chris Hemsworth stars as Thor in Thor: Love and Thunder.

Thor: Love and Thunder

Thor: Love and Thunder Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Christian Bale, Tessa Thompson, Russell Crowe

Thor: Love and Thunder Director: Taika Waititi

Thor: Love and Thunder Stars: 3/5

Thor: Ragnarok, for many including this reviewer, is slated high amongst the best MCU movies of all time! What the first two Thors could not accomplish, the Taika Waititi directorial did with finesse, which is to make the God of Thunder likeable and witty. Now, we have Chris Hemsworth returning for the fourth instalment, Thor: Love and Thunder, with old allies and new enemies. With overexceeding expectations, is second time the charm for Hemsworth-Waititi's eccentric combo? Let's find out!

In Thor: Love and Thunder, we see Thor facing a mid-life crisis, what with losing practically all of his loved ones including beloved brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston, who is very much alive in another timeline!). However, the God of Thunder's dad-bod soon transforms into a God-bod, when trouble comes knocking in the menacing avatar of Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale). Gorr is on a killing spree, hell-bent on murdering all Gods as revenge for the ill-fated death of his young daughter. After Gorr cleverly kidnaps Asgardian children as bate, Thor enlists the help of Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) and Korg (Taika Waititi) to save the day for the nth time. However, to Thor's shock, his ex-love Dr. Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) is a surprising counterpart on his intergalactic adventure with sudden powers to yield Thor's beloved Mjölnir. You can call her Mighty Thor!

One can't help but compare Thor: Love and Thunder to Thor: Ragnarok, because Taika Waititi pulled out all the 'unconventional' stops in the former. This time, too, Taika (screenplay co-written with Jennifer Kaytin Robinson) tries to interlace his trademark wit with that of Marvel's humour motif but comes up short at the end. While there are quite a few laughs, it's not enough, and God forbid, even forced. However, what Thor: Love and Thunder gets right is the emotional quotient, especially when it comes to Jane's cancer diagnosis and how it affects her mentally, dwindling her body down with every strike of the hammer. As melancholically mentioned by Thor about the "8 years, 7 months and 6 days" since they last saw each other, Thor and Jane's love story takes time to simmer through before it really kicks off. Ultimately, you're more invested in these two characters' triumphs individually, than as a couple.

When it comes to the performances in Thor: Love and Thunder, Chris Hemsworth doesn't miss a step as Thor, bringing back the infectious magic of the OG 6 Avengers that I've thoroughly missed in MCU Phase 4. Even the childish of jokes (and there are many!) are given a zany edge, thanks to Chris' underrated comic timing. On the other hand, Natalie Portman gets her due in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the Oscar winner's acting chops come in handy in the more serious sequences, while Natalie exudes sheer joy in being Mighty Thor (as she tries to awkwardly embrace her muscly superhero side) which is exciting to witness on the big screen. The back-and-forth between the two Thors, especially when it comes to the jealousy aspects with both their hammers - Mjölnir and Stormbreaker is effervescently delightful.

Speaking of Oscar winners, Christian Bale delivers yet another physically ambitious performance as Gorr the God Butcher, where he makes a fragmented backstory work like a charm. Bale is genuinely terrifying in parts, though the dilly-dally ending doesn't justify the means. Especially when he's the black clouds amid a rainbow-envy bag of happy characters. Tessa Thompson was the scene-stealer in Thor: Ragnarok, but in Thor: Love and Thunder, she's painfully shunned to the sidelines, so much so, that Korg has more screentime than her, which is unfortunate. Don't get more wrong; who doesn't love Korg, but we'd have loved him a lot more with a lot less.

Thor: Love and Thunder is jam-packed with A-list celebrity cameos (There's one epic one for Ted Lasso fans in the mid-credits!) and the one who takes the cake and eats it too is Russell Crowe's boisterous performance as Zeus, with an outlandish accent that's over the top, times Waititi! It's when Thor & Co. encounter Zeus where all the belly laughs reside. As for the inclusion of the Guardians of the Galaxy (Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Karen Gillan, Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel), it's a delectable appetiser before the actual flash fun commences.

ALSO READ: Thor: Love and Thunder EXCLUSIVE: Tessa Thompson says THIS on Valkyrie and Captain Marvel romance possibility

The action sequences in Thor: Love and Thunder ups the ante with some kaleidoscope of colours, orchestrated by Nigel Phelps' aesthetic production design while Barry Baz Idoine's elite cinematography enables time to witness the marvel of even the overtly-CGI takeover. This is specifically seen in a black and white set piece in the second half that compliments Gorr's chilling dominance over Thor and his squad of misfit superheroes. As does it linger in the climax sequence, with kid-like, metallic vigour. Music played a very important aspect in Thor: Ragnarok (Who can forget Thor's epic battle entrance moment with Led Zeppelin's Immigrant Song as the theme tune?!) and in Thor: Love and Thunder, the Guns N' Roses biggest hits playlist is a masterful addition as is Michael Giacchino and Nam Melumad's electrifying score.

In conclusion, Thor: Love and Thunder finds itself in the loophole of recent Phase 4 outings, like Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Magic, where the MCU tries to branch out from its status quo that it's massively criticised for and 'experiment' in its narrative structure. The Chris Hemsworth starrer doesn't hold a candle to Thor: Ragnarok because of its overambitious, misguided direction, but for MCU fans (This writer has watched all 29 movies, mind you!), Thor: Love and Thunder could very well be a home run because of its trustworthy cast. Barring the screeching goats, who were funny for a like a minute!


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