Thor: Love and Thunder reviews are mostly for people who (unlike yours truly) did not buy advance tickets early. Great movies like this are without a doubt as strong and durable as Thor himself.
However, these initial reviews can only serve to force fans to wait for Thor: Love and Thunder’s Disney Plus release. And no, these reviews are not a big bucket of cold water (I see it on Thursday night, and I’m still excited), but they do a pretty good job of lowering your expectations.
Many critics seem to design Thor: Love and Thunder as “more of the same” compared to Thor: Ragnarok. And while we still think it’s probably good, it feels like everyone can be on autopilot.
Thor: Love and Thunder currently have a score of 71% on Rotten Tomatoes (opens in new tab) with 78 reviews counted and more on the way in. So it seems that the critical reaction is very mixed.
Why critics do not like Thor: Love and Thunder
Andrew J. Salazar for discussion film (opens in new tab) was the first to address our concerns. He warns that you may have to wait a bit to feel the love of the film, and writes “It is not until the second half that Thor: Love and thunder really get into their own journey that is worth telling. “
And unfortunately, it seems like they wasted one of the biggest new MCU additions, as Salazar notes “it can not be underestimated how much of a lost opportunity Christian Bales Gorr feels. The character certainly does not fall in the lower half of Marvel’s underutilized villains, but he definitely does not reach the top either. “
However, Salazar’s most condemning complaint came when he wrote “While Thor: Ragnarok almost feels like a magic trick, Waititi proves what can be done with a Thor story in its own unique way, Thor: Love and Thunder feels like a tired act.”
CNN (opens in new tab)Brian Lowry is another of the critics we saw who compared Thor: Love and Thunder to the previous chapter in an unfavorable light. Lowry states: “The impressive mix of tones and styles that director Taika Waititi drew in Thor: Ragnarok mostly melts in Thor: Love and Thunder, which is not as fun as it wants to be, as touching as it needs to be or romantic as it should be. “
More frustrating, Valeries Complex by deadline (opens in new tab) writes that Thor is made a mistake by the film, as “Instead of being the misguided superhero who learned from his mistakes, he is reduced to a clumsy, himbo, Hulk Hogan lookalike.”
But that’s not the only failure in supporting a character: “In Ragnarok, Valkyrie served a purpose. She was a reminder of the old, oppressive ways of Asgard. IN Thor and Thor: The Dark World, Lady Sif is a powerful fighter and defender of Asgard. But in this movie, although it’s good to see both characters in action, they serve no purpose. If none of them were in this movie, it would not have made a difference to the story. In other words, they are wasted. “
Why critics like Thor: Love and Thunder
At Collider (opens in new tab), Therese Lacson frames Thor: Love and Thunder as an ointment for the current muddy situation in Phase 4 of MCU. Among the flowers handed out, some go to Christian Bale, who “We do not break anything new with this character, but it is Bale’s menacing and physical performance that makes it stand out. Bale is obviously no stranger to playing villains (or heroes), but the way he delicately balances the grief of Gorr’s past with his vengeful slaughter of Gorr’s present makes him exciting to watch. “
Lacson also praises Waititis ‘contribution to the script, praising it as “Eccentric and funny, with elements of slapstick, and a heavy dose of heart and a bit of melancholy – it’s a familiar formula when it comes to Waititis’ work, but not one that has lost its charm.”
More importantly, Lacson’s review concludes by saying “So while there may be complaints about the film’s pace or weaker first half, Thor: Love and Thunder recaptured exactly what charmed me with these MCU movies.”
Analysis: Why we’re still excited about Thor: Love and Thunder
In the aforementioned review from Valerie Complex at Deadline, she noted “For every negative mentioned about Thor: Love and Thunder, the comedy, the action scenes and the performances prevent it from cave.” And that was what I personally needed to hear.
I love it when an MCU movie is not only “good for a Marvel movie”, but as long as Thor: Love and Thunder is a good Marvel movie? It’s done its job.
I came out of Doctor Strange 2 with a lot to complain about, but as long as it’s enough to keep Thor: Love and Thunder afloat, I’m not asking for a refund for my ticket.