Summary

Thor 4 was a fun movie - but it could've been two better movies instead.

Thor 4 should be Thors 4 & 5

Taika Waititi once again proves himself a capable custodian of the Thor franchise – inserting whimsy and humor into a franchise that occasionally risked taking itself too seriously. Delightful visions, quick action, humorous banter, and placing Chris Hemsworth in situations that allow him to show his strengths – physical, as well as comedic. And yet… this latest chapter feels like a missed opportunty.

Thor: Love and Thunder mines two of the best storylines from the comics written by Jason Aaron – the Jane Foster as Thor storyline, as well as a tale about a diety-slaying “God Butcher.”

Both stories could’ve – and in my view, should have – served as the basis for a full feature film. Feige and Waititi could’ve filmed them back-to-back, Back to the Future 2/3 or Matrix 2/3 style (Marvel Studios has even done this with the 3rd and 4th Avengers films, with Infinity War and Endgame).

The “God Butcher” storyline, in particular, is diminished by this half-film adaptation. The comic story is rendered as an epic – featuring Thor at three wildly different time periods in his life – as the young, foolish adventurer, as the prime-aged Avenger, as well as the older, wiser, monocular King Thor.

Furthermore, the “Lady Thor” storyline in Thor: Love and Thunder feels a bit rushed – Natalie Portman barely gets a chance to wield Mjolnir before she’s already facing a sense of finality as a superhero. In Aaron’s comics, the identity of Lady Thor was a mystery – and she got to hold her own and have some solo adventures – creating opportunities for viewing the character in a different prism, as well as seeing others react to the prospect of a feminine thunder god in entertaining ways.

These misgivings aside, Thor: Love and Thunder was a delight throughout: following-up the events of Endgame well, as well as a hysterical middle section in which a perfectly cast guest star steals the show as a mythological legend. And the mid-credits set-up for the next phase in Thor’s ongoing story literally had me break into song as the credits rolled.

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Thor 4 was a fun movie - but it could've been two better movies instead.Thor 4 should be Thors 4 & 5