Thor: Ragnarok marked a significant tonal shift in the Thor franchise. Moving away from the dark themes (and coloring) of the original Thor movies, it opted instead for bright colors, witty banter, and a rocking soundtrack. Thor: Love & Thunder stuck with this shift – Therese Lacson says it “doubles down on the Ragnarok charm” – and some fans see it as the best MCU: Phase 4 has to offer so far.
Let’s take a look at what people think of Thor: Love & Thunder after the premiere in LA on June 23, 2022.
The Star Power of Thor: Love and Thunder
The MCU is well-known for its high-profile cameos and talented cast. Thor: Love and Thunder plays on the fan’s love of callbacks and introducing critically-acclaimed actors into the franchise.
Natalie Portman returns as Jane Foster and she becomes Mighty Thor. Fans were thrilled to see her back in the franchise following her absence in Thor: Ragnarok. Her transformation into Mighty Thor falls in line with the MCU’s push to include more women in superhero roles, and fans are loving it.
We get not only Thor and Valkyrie returning, but the entirety of the Guardians of the Galaxy team. And who doesn’t love a good crossover? MCU fans certainly do.
On top of that, we get Russell Crowe as Zeus and Christian Bale’s entrance into the MCU as Gorr the God Butcher.
Plus, we get popular director Taika Waititi reprising his cameo role as Korg, the loveable rock creature. He took over the role of director for the second time in the Thor franchise, and many credit Ragnarok’s success to his direction. We aren’t surprised he was able to deliver once again.
And multiple critics, like Maggie Ma, have cited “the two goats” as their new favorite characters. We all love a good animal appearance, so we can’t wait to see what part they play in the film.
What Critics Have to Say About Thor: Love and Thunder
While the rest of the US must wait until July 8, 2022 for Thor: Love and Thunder to release nationally, a lucky few got to enjoy the highly anticipated film at the LA premiere on June 23, 2022. And critics are raving.
Erik Davis from Fandango and Rotten Tomatoes calls Thor: Love and Thunder “another classic Thor adventure! #ThorLoveAndThunder is everything I wanted it to be. Big, colorful, weird Guns N’ Roses-fueled battles to go w/ a hopelessly romantic story about discovering love in unexpected places. Christian Bale & Russell Crowe are especially great. And Korg!”
Matt Neglia calls Thor: Love and Thunder “a rockin’ great time with electrifying action, lots of laughs (the screaming goats!) & a profound story on absent gods & our desire for love. Natalie Portman makes a mighty return & Christian Bale slays it as the terrifying Gorr. The best Thor film yet!”
Lyra Hale agrees, saying the film is “the GREATEST movie Marvel has made so far! I’m not joking. I haven’t laughed that hard since Ragnarok and I feel invested in Marvel again in a way that I haven’t since Endgame. Also, bring tissues. The journey is *chefs kiss* from start to finish!”
Does Every Movie Need to Build Towards a Grand Finale?
However, it isn’t all positive. While Eric Italiano credits Thor: Love and Thunder as “the funniest film in the MCU,” he worries that it isn’t building towards something. With Thanos gone, he says “the plot felt flat and stakeless. Not sure if that’s a #Thor problem or an MCU-without-a-big-bad problem.” However, he says that “Christian Bale, obviously, is also terrifying as #Gorr.” So how does Gorr fill the role of a terrifying villain, but not give the story enough edge? We’ll have to see if Italiano’s seemingly contradictory statement holds true when we watch it ourselves.
Not every movie needs to be a piece of one large, intricate puzzle that only gives a payoff when you watch all 87 movies. Maybe it’s time for a MCU movie that you can enjoy without feeling like you need to do hours of homework first.
Photo Credit: Marvel