Thor: Love and Thunder (4DX Experience Review); Grade: C
Before we start this review: Our condolences go out to my brother in law’s Uncle Justin, who unexpectedly passed away Wednesday. He loved his family and loved Jesus, as his family also loved him dearly. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Boag family, as may Justin Rest in Peace, as he’s in a much better place now.
Thor: Love and Thunder tells a story about a bald skinny man named Gorr (Christian Bale), who he and his daughter are in the middle of a hot desert, as his daughter passes away. So then Gorr travels for a bit, which he found a sacred place that featured water and fresh fruit. As Gorr eats the fresh fruit: A God gets mad at Gorr for eating the fruit, as Gorr is confused since he was literally dying in desert, as why would this God poke fun at him after suffering a great deal of pain, heat exhaustion, and deprived of food and water. The God continued to push Gorr’s buttons, as he comes off as a fat lousy prick and… BOOM, Gorr kills him. Gorr gets really really mad, as he vows to kill all the Gods as he’ll be known as The God Butcher. Now it’s up to the God of Thunder Thor (Chris Hemsworth) to put an end to The God Butcher, before all the Gods suddenly are vanished from the earth.
I’m not going to lie: I’m surprised this review exists. After a 2021 year of four Marvel films, which three of the four were mediocre or worse… I wish to no longer watch Marvel films in the theater anymore. The films just leave me unimpressed almost every single time, very repetitive, uninspired, laziness, as they don’t offer you much originality nor creativity whatsoever in providing a unique experience. Now a days it feels like independent cinema such as A24, Neon Rated, Bleecker Street etc. are keeping cinema alive, as they consistently come up with unique films that take on bold risks. The only exception I really have in wanting to see another one of these Marvel films is if a girl insists on going out on a date with me or if my friends invite me out at the movies… Other than that, I really have 0 desire to waste my time in actually going out of my way and seeing these films in a theater anymore, it’s such a draining experience to continue supporting such repetitive crap.
So the question is asked: How the hell did I end up watching Thor: Love and Thunder?! I just got done with a quick and simple job interview, as across the street this movie was playing in a 4DX format. For those who don’t know what 4DX is: It’s a new way to experience film, which it’s actually a motion ride attraction. I’ve had a couple experiences with motion ride attractions in the past. First experience being at Luxor Casino in Las Vegas, as when my Aunt, Uncles, Grandma, and my Cousin visited during Easter… We went on several motion ride attractions, as I can recall one featuring a Robot. Circus Circus also featured a couple motion ride attractions, one featured Dora the Explorer and the other being SpongeBob. I’ve never experience a motion ride attraction that showed a full length featured film, as I was extremely curious about the experience in general.
I would never experience this 4DX viewing experience for a film I was extremely excited or interested in, as I feel the experience would be a massive distraction to fully follow along with the film. So when Thor: Love and Thunder, a film in which I had 0 desire in seeing… I figure this is the perfect opportunity to take on my first 4DX experience.
My 4DX experience t’was actually… Extremely enjoyable. It definitely lives up to the hype in terms of delivering a unique and fun new way of experiencing cinema for sure. The experience includes your chair moving all around like a theme park attraction ride, when there’s a gust of wind the theater suddenly becomes extremely cold with a fan blowing air, you’re hit with air between your head placement when there’s action sequences involved, your seat a couple times hits your back as it felt like a grip of someone's hand, and you’re even hit with water a few times. For films you have 0 desire in seeing or especially Marvel films in this case, where the substance value is equivalent to theme park rides… This is the best way to watch those films. I recommend experiencing 4DX once in your life, it’s a whole lotta of fun I will say, it certainly helped me keep myself in the theater while viewing this film for sure.
When it comes to the Thor franchise… Not much of a fan. Thor was crap, didn’t bother seeing the second film since it gotten poor reception as I had 0 desire to see it, Thor: Ragnarok perhaps is one of the most overrated superhero films of our time. So of course: I had very low expectations of Thor: Love and Thunder, let alone did not want to watch this film at all.
Thor: Love and Thunder for the first couple acts… If it wasn’t for 4DX, I probably would’ve walked out of this film, as my mind kept contemplating on it. The achilles heel for this movie is without a doubt the comedy material… I can see why movie goers are starting to get really aggravated with Taika Waititi, because my God the jokes he’s coming up with are HORRENDOUS. I’m going to have to say: The humor is equivalent to toddler level of humor… If you thought Thor: Ragnarok’s humor was bad with it’s end of the popsicle stick like humor, oh boy it’s gets WORSE with this film.
The thing that is very bothersome about this comedy material, is the fact the comedy material plays a part in unnecessary comedic detours. We experience an extremely random sequence, where there are actors that re-enact a play of what happened with Thor, Loki, their father, and some villain of some sort. Apparently this sequence is to be humorous of some kind, as it featured Matt Damon and Melissa McCarthy. This sequence is not only flat out atrocious in the comedic field, as it felt like someone was bashing my brain with a hammer… But this sequence has no moral purpose of existing, what exactly does this sequence has to do with anything in progressing the plot forward?!
You can almost say the exact same thing when Thor and his gang are visiting Zeus (Russell Crowe), as they’re trying to receive a brand new weapon. I will say the at least that sequence does move the plot forward, however this also felt like an unnecessary comedic detour that was… Terrible. I mean this sequence could’ve been at least tolerable if it was toned down on the comedic tone and was taken seriously, since gathering this weapon will help them in securing kidnapped children… But no: Taika Waititi wants to strap you in a chair, while continually beating your head over his terrible comedic jokes that aren’t funny at all. Oh before I forget: OBNOXIOUS LOUD ANIMALS!!! Can we stop using this as a comedic gag?! It has never been funny and it will never will be funny, for the love of God why are we continuing reusing this garbage form of comedy?!
There’s a couple of sequences in the first two acts that didn’t sit well. Like when Jane (Natalie Portman) gains her powers into becoming Mighty Thor… That sequence felt very unassuming. All Jane did was touch a glass of a broken hammer and POOF, she’s now Mighty Thor. How about constructing a sequence, in which Jane is severely suffering from her cancer, as she approaches the hammer as she emotionally breaks down crying, as she’s falling to the ground. Though Jane is a scientist as most scientists don’t believe in God: Jane this one time prays to God begging God to heal her and to give her immense power, to overcome her sickness, as by doing so she’ll make a massive difference for the world as… BAM, SHE THEN BECOMES MIGHTY THOR! I felt that sequence would’ve been much more exciting, fun, and even moving that prayer can deliver in such crucial times, than just giving her powers by touching the glass. I’m not implying that religious ties should be included based on my beliefs, I would just include it because it does move the audience when constructed properly, I mean it's a much better idea than her touching the glass and gaining powers out of thin air.
The opening action sequence… What a boring way to start your film. The sequence felt like relieving Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace, with those vehicles those weird creatures were driving in, while also Thor destroying a building like structure for the people he helped in the first place. What’s weird about this opening action sequence, is it tries to setup that Thor will later on learn a lesson, to be much more tamed and mature while helping beating bad guys, without causing destruction as yet… It never does gets to that point at all, as we’re left with… What was the point in that sequence existing?! Speaking of this film reminding you of other films: Anyone else caught IT: Chapter 1 & 2 vibes from this film?! Gorr trapping the kids brought out serious It: Chapter 1 & 2 vibes whether it be with the cage or in the grand finale especially.
Suddenly: This film made a comeback around the end of the second act and especially the third act for sure. It really started with Thor and the gang heading into Gorr’s dark planet, which the film suddenly switched to black and white picture which I thought that style of choice was pretty cool, as not only visually speaking but more so tone speaking. They’re coming from a much bright and colorful world filled with hope and love, to now a dark and eerie world where there’s only anger, hatred, and bitterness. You get to fully understand why exactly Gorr is a villain to begin with, as he felt betrayed by the Gods which one God didn’t care about him suffering or his daughter passing on. It made not only sense why he wants to murder Gods, but also makes much sense why he’s open to kidnapping children as his child was taken away, so he felt those should suffer the way he suffered as well. That sequence was well executed despite having one dangling flaw, as it also brought much more depth and meaning towards a fairly written antagonist that has been the much better antagonist compared to the last several Marvel films recently.
The Third Act though has yet again a couple dangling flaws, turned out to be the best part of the entire film. I feel it’s the only act that actually tries to take itself very seriously, without attempting atrocious humor, as when the film actually takes a serious approach… It’s much better. The entire sequence was fun to watch, along with the dark moon planet it was also a much more proper executed action sequence. It also featured an emotional, moving finale in which brings out the feels, as it brings the audience more in tune with choosing love over hate. Imagine if the film would’ve just had a much more serious tone, than trying to be an overly obnoxious bad comedy… Probably would’ve been one of the better Marvel films, but nope Taika Waititi’s ego in thinking he’s some kind of comedic mastermind, when in reality he’s just a complete jackass just really held this film back.
Overall, Thor: Love and Thunder was just ok, thankfully I do not hate myself for watching this yet again repetitive MCU junk. I don’t recommend this film, without the 4DX experience it’s hard to imagine one being heavily excited nor invested in this film as it is kind of lame. Well unless I go out on a date or am invited out with friends… Don’t expect me to see another one of these damn Marvel movies in theaters, unless I have nothing else better to do with my life, as I want to experience 4DX again. -Mitch Smietana