Thor: Love And Thunder
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Due to an enchantment Thor unknowingly placed on it years earlier to protect Foster, Mjolnir reforges and bonds itself to her. Thor arrives in New Asgard just as Gorr's attack begins. Thor is surprised to find Foster wielding Mjolnir, but teams up with her, Valkyrie, and Korg to fight Gorr. The group thwarts Gorr, but he escapes, kidnapping several Asgardian children and imprisoning them in the Shadow Realm. The group travels to Omnipotence City to warn the other gods and ask for their help in creating an army. The leader of the gods, Zeus, is unwilling to help, thinking they can remain safe and hidden from Gorr in the City; he also believes that Gorr will not be able to achieve his stated goal of visiting the realm of Eternity, where he will be granted one wish, presumably to destroy all gods. As a security precaution, Zeus orders the group's capture to prevent them from exposing the City's location to Gorr. When Zeus injures Korg, Thor impales Zeus with his thunderbolt, which Valkyrie steals before they escape to confront Gorr in the Shadow Realm. On the way, Thor learns of Foster's cancer diagnosis, and the two rekindle their relationship.
Upon traveling back to New Asgard, Thor discovers that Foster's Thor form is not allowing her body to naturally fight the cancer. Due to this, Thor travels to Eternity's altar alone, and using Zeus's thunderbolt, imbues the children with his power to fight Gorr's monsters while he battles Gorr. When Foster senses that Gorr is about to kill Thor, she joins the battle with Mjolnir to save him. They destroy the Necrosword, freeing Gorr from its influence, but the three are brought into Eternity's realm. With Gorr poised to make his wish, Thor implores Gorr to revive his daughter instead of destroying the gods. Thor then leaves Gorr to make his decision and attends to Foster, who succumbs to her illness and dies in his arms. Moved by their display, Gorr wishes for Eternity to revive Love, which it grants. As Gorr dies from the curse, he requests Thor to take care of Love.
Deities introduced in the film include Simon Russell Beale as the Olympian god Dionysus, Jonathan Brugh (who appeared in Waititi's 2014 film What We Do in the Shadows) as Rapu, a god from Gorr's home planet who becomes his first victim, Akosia Sabet as Bast, a goddess who is a member of both the Heliopolitan and Wakandan pantheons, Kuni Hashimoto as the Japanese god Jademurai, and Carmen Foon as the Roman goddess Minerva. Also appearing in the film are Kieron L. Dyer as Axl, Heimdall's son, Chris Hemsworth's daughter India as Love, Gorr's daughter, and Stephen Curry as Yakan, the ruler of the planet Indigarr. Cameos in the film include Bale, Portman, and Waititi's children as New Asgard children, Hemsworth's wife Elsa Pataky as the wolf woman who was one of Thor's past lovers, Indiana Evans as one of the Zeusettes, Jenny Morris as a New Asgard citizen, Chloé Gouneau as Foster's mother Elaine in a flashback sequence, Dave Cory as Dwayne, a Kronan who becomes Korg's partner in a romantic relationship, and Brett Goldstein as Zeus' son Hercules in the mid-credits scene.
At the end of July, Waititi said they had been writing the script off and on for over a year and he was taking another pass on it that week. He said it was very romantic, and explained that he wanted to make a romance film because he wanted to make something that he had not done before, and, as such, wrote the film as a love story. He later said the film was \"about love, with superheroes and outer space\", and that he wanted to \"embrace this thing that I was always a bit dismissive of, and explore this idea of love, and show characters who do believe in love\". That October, Hemsworth said Waititi was still writing the script and expressed his excitement for doing something drastically different with his character, as he did in his previous three MCU films. Waititi later described Love and Thunder as the craziest film he had ever made and explained that each element was intended to not make sense. He said it would have its own \"distinct flavour\" from Ragnarok, which he called a 1970s space opera with a festive, party-like tone. He saw this film as a 1980s adventure, taking inspiration from posters for films such as Conan the Barbarian (1982) and The Beastmaster (1982) as well as art seen on vans in Venice Beach, with the works of Jack Kirby and the cover of \"old\" Mills & Boon romance novels also serving as \"visual touchstones\" for the film. He said it was not serious or dramatic, but it did explore themes such as love, loss, and \"our place in the world\" while making the characters ask themselves the questions: \"What is your purpose What is the reason that you're a hero, and what do you do when you have these powers\"
Todd Gilchrist at The A.V. Club graded the film 'B', feeling that it did \"[revisit] the cheeky, sentimental tone of the nearly universally beloved Thor: Ragnarok, and propels its eponymous hero into new adventures that bring full circle a journey that started with the very first, much-less-beloved Thor back in 2011.\" He praised Portman and Bale's performances, with the latter's character being considered \"the most interesting and sympathetic Marvel adversary since Michael B. Jordan's Killmonger in Black Panther\", and Waititi's \"distinctive imagery [in the film] that may disturb and upset some viewers\", outpacing Sam Raimi's accomplishments in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022). Leah Greenblatt at Entertainment Weekly also gave a similar grade, feeling that although \"its cheerful melee of starry cameos, in-jokes, and Cliffs-Notes mythology, feels a lot like franchise fatigue, it also has frequent moments of gonzo charm, thanks largely to the Technicolor lunacy of writer-director [Waititi] and a cast that seems inordinately game to follow his lead.\"
Thor calls out to Gorr and pleads for him to choose love over death as he rushes to Mighty Thor's side. Their love reminded him of the love he had for his daughter, thus deciding to use his wish to resurrect her. Foster soon succumbs to the cancer, vanishing into Valhalla. Thor accepts Gorr's request to take custody of his daughter before he dies from the Necrosword's curse.
Parents need to know that Thor: Love and Thunder is the sequel to 2017's Thor: Ragnarok and the fourth Thor movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This time around, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) bids goodbye to the Guardians of the Galaxy when a new threat appears in the universe: Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale), whose mission is to kill every god. Expect plenty of comic book-style action violence, including weapon use and hand-to-hand combat, as well as two injuries/deaths that are likely to upset younger audiences. The story focuses more on love and romance than most other MCU films, with kissing and affection between a couple and discussions of true love and the \"ones who got away.\" There's also a suggestive scene in the realm of the gods where a planned orgy is mentioned more than once and women literally swoon at seeing Thor stripped of his clothes (audiences see him naked from the rear). Language includes several uses of the word \"s--t,\" plus \"piss off,\" \"hell,\" and \"oh my God.\" Families can check in on the movie's messages about the importance of choosing love, asking for help, and persevering despite the odds.
THOR: LOVE AND THUNDER introduces a new villain for everyone's favorite Asgardian god (Chris Hemsworth): Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale), who wields the god-killing necro sword and is compelled to strike down every god in the universe. With the help of Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Korg (Taika Waititi), and former girlfriend Dr. Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) -- who's now able to wield the reconstructed hammer Mjolnir herself -- Thor sets out to defeat Gorr after the villain manages to kidnap all of the Asgardian children and hold them hostage in another realm. The heroes set off to ask the remaining gods, starting with Zeus (Russell Crowe), to help take down Gorr, but they're too busy feasting and frolicking to care. As Jane, who's keeping an important secret from Thor, and Thor grow closer once again, he begins to wonder whether his old pal Peter Quill is right -- that you need to feel loved, even if that love is painful, to have purpose.
Director Taika Waititi can't quite re-create the alchemic chemistry of Ragnarok in this serviceable but less exciting sequel, partly because Jane and Thor's romance doesn't spark. Putting the romance between Thor and Jane at the center of the story is unfortunate, because as talented as Hemsworth and Portman are, they have a bland on-screen presence together (especially when compared to Tom Holland and Zendaya, or Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany). Both Thor and Jane have far more interesting relationships with their closest friends -- in his case, Thompson's Valkyrie, and in her case, Kat Dennings' Dr. Darcy Miller. The banter and teasing they have in these platonic friendships far outshines the platitude-filled commentary about the power of love. So it's partly the actors (since this issue also existed in the earlier Thor films) and partly the screenplay, which tells more than it shows about love. Portman has always seemed an odd casting choice in this role, and though she finally has more to do in this movie, the fit still seems off. At least Korg and Valkyrie are there to add humor to the occasionally cringey early encounters between Thor and Jane.
On the bright side, this Thor, who's vulnerable and open to love, shows more depth than the young, arrogant, and reckless one who didn't think about consequences. He's no longer a selfish god. Speaking of gods, Crowe adopts a strange, pseudo-Italian accent to play a Greek god, and it just doesn't work, which makes Zeus more caricature than actual character. Still, it's fun to watch the former gl