Thor: Love and Thunder Review
No one wants to say it, but plenty know it’s true: the MCU lacks direction post-Endgame. With Phase Four focused on the post-Thanos world, it lacks an overarching narrative. For now, at least. While this has let Marvel explore different concepts and genres of storytelling, it makes the MCU seem inconsistent in tone. Case in point, we have the newest Thor film, Thor: Love and Thunder. It’s a really fun film, but if people expected it to be groundbreaking and innovative, prepare to be disappointed.
Gorr the God Butcher’s Coming
The MCU’s put Thor through the wringer, hasn’t it? He lost his Dad, mom, homeworld, and adoptive brother in a few years. In addition, failing to stop Thanos left him a broken man, and he’s only started picking up the pieces. At the end of Endgame, he went with the Guardians (and Korg) on a journey of self-discovery. This film picks up where they left off, and despite getting ripped again, Thor still hasn’t found inner peace. So they leave the Guardians and go on their adventure…right as a man who’s channeling his inner Kratos enacts a plan to kill every god in existence.
Yeah, they need to get on that.
More of the Same…
Tone-wise, the film’s consistent with its predecessor, Thor: Ragnarok, due to Taika Waititi returning to direct it. It’s very comedic and relies a lot on gags, hamminess, and lots of 80’s vibes. Guns N’ Roses songs get used a lot in this film. However, the problem with this is that it causes the lead character to suffer from Flanderization. Thor is far less serious and more comedic than when first introduced in 2011. In all fairness, this could be attributed to frequent exposure to modern Earth Culture and his newfound humility, but it’s still a sharp contrast from 10 years ago. It also doesn’t help that Thor’s hung up over his relationship problems. Not just Jane Foster, but with Mjolnir and Stormbreaker.
Love and Thunder takes the return of Mjolnir and frames it like Thor’s Ex getting together with his other Ex. In this case, Jane Foster. Thor’s clearly very confused about it, and not helping is that Stormbreaker seems to get jealous. Yes, the axe gets jealous of the hammer. It’s funny at first, but not so much by the film’s end.
…Some New Improvements
The film’s best aspects, though, are in Jane Foster and the main villain, Gorr.
Natalie Portman’s return as Jane Foster is a much-welcomed one by fans, and she doesn’t miss a beat. Now wielding Mjolnir and Thor’s powers, she’s no longer just Thor’s love interest but a hero in her own right. The films just as much about her as it is about Thor.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, we have the villain, Gorr the God-Butcher, played by Christian Bale. Gorr is a man who’s utterly consumed by despair. His whole world died of famine, and the god he thought would save them didnt just do nothing; he laughed at their plight. This led him to conclude all gods are bad and need to go, and his weapon, the Necrosword, has the power to get it done.
The thing is, Gorr’s not wrong. The gods can be jerks. Thor was a big jerk before he learned humility, and Zeus is even worse. A lot of gods can be very cruel and callous, so one cannot help but sympathize with Gorr’s decision, even if he takes it way too far. Christian Bale still does a great job being a villain, and is a big highlight of the film.
Overall, this film isnt really groundbreaking or game-changing. It doesn’t have to be, though. It’s a Marvel movie. People will watch it either way. Whether that’s a sign that the MCU’s going downhill remains debatable, though. If you want a fun distraction for two hours, this is a film for you.
I Give “Thor: Love and Thunder” a 4/5