Thor Love and Thunder is Taika Waititi’s triumphant return to the Thor franchise. This iteration also sees the return of Dr. Jane Foster, Natalie Portman, after her absence from Ragnarok. Portman is formidable and does more as The Mighty Thor than in her two previous appearances, but she is no replacement for Cate Blanchett.
Ragnarok was an about-face after the disappointment of The Dark World and brought Thor into a colorful and fun universe and evolved Thor into a loveable loser and oftentimes goofball. It was a fun change of pace that carried through the Infinity War Saga. Thor is the only remaining original avenger not to have been replaced; Hawkeye’s time is limited after his Disney+ series passed the torch.
The adage, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it applies a little too heavily here. Taika’s fingerprints are all over the film and many of the gags and tone from Ragnarok return but grow a little stale. Taika’s character, Korg, is present throughout the film and overstays his welcome in my opinion. He is no longer the seasoning sprinkled on top to elevate the film, instead, he is the main ingredient.
Ragnarok was enjoyable for all audiences including those that did not follow the MCU closely. Love and Thunder may be similarly approachable if you want to dabble in the MCU. It is also a wonderful music video for Guns and Roses. It is inescapable how much Guns and Roses’ music is in this film. I enjoyed Love and Thunder, but it did not live up to Ragnarok. There is room for humor in the MCU, but it is best when it is new and fresh, not leftovers from the 1980s.