4.5/10 Taika Waititi continues to prove himself to be one of the most overrated directors currently working in Hollywood (although I applaud his work ethic) and has essentially become a one trick pony of betraying characters and forcing in humor where it doesn’t belong. While there are definitely elements in the movie to appreciate, Marvel continues to overall get worse and worse as bad or mediocre movies/shows are now the norm, with something great like “Spider-Man: No Way Home” being the rare exception. As for what did work, the highlight of the movie is easily Christian Bale as Gorr, the God Butcher. The opening scene with him is well directed and easily the best part of the movie and Bale feels too good for this script. Hemsworth gives it his all, despite a weak script as the acting overall works (Tessa Thompson has nothing to do here and just looks bored). The movie’s score and soundtrack both work really well, although the soundtrack feels a little bit like it is taking the James Gunn approach that he took with “Guardians of the Galaxy”. The movie is certainly entertaining and I did enjoy the color scheme with the bright rainbows balancing out the black/white of the Shadow Realm. Gorr gets a solid character arc and we understand his motivations from start to finish. There are a few elements that act as both pros and cons such as the visuals and the humor. On the positive side of things, a lot of the visuals look fantastic and there are even some great scene transitions with the editing. On the negative side, certain shots look cheesy and unlike a film like “Top Gun: Maverick” with practical effects that look real because they are real, this movie just looks like it came out of a computer and nothing looks real. Even though the visual effects often look beautiful, they still look like 100% CGI with almost nothing being practically done. As for the comedy, I did find some of the jokes landed and this was much funnier than “Thor: Ragnarok”. On the negative side, many jokes don’t land, which I will get more into in a moment. My biggest problem with Waititi is that he doesn’t care about characters. He values jokes more than being faithful to who each character is. My biggest complaint in “Thor: Ragnarok” was that Waititi took one of the few serious characters in Thor and completely changed him into a Deadpool like character, always telling jokes, which was not and is not who that character is. In the scene (seen in the trailer) when Thor gets his clothes blown off and is naked, we see some tattoos on his back. The moment is one of the funnier moments when you look at his tattoos, until you realize that getting tattooed with silly jokes is something Thor would never do and Waititi forces in for more humor while sacrificing what makes Thor Thor. This constant betrayal of characters by having them do unrealistic things that the characters would never do just for another joke is the movie’s greatest sin and reminded me of what Rian Johnson did to the characters like Luke Skywalker in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”. Many of the jokes fall flat, including the screaming goats. Not only were the YouTube videos of screaming goats popular a full decade ago, but while hearing the goats scream for the first time might be mildly amusing to some, each time they scream, the joke gets more repetitive, less funny and it is just beating a dead horse…or…goat. In a movie with a man losing his daughter, stage 4 cancer and kidnapped kids, you’d think there would be some solid serious moments to balance the humor but Waititi even forces jokes into many of those serious moments, making for odd tonal shifts. Many plot points contradict previous Marvel films (going to a special place that grants anyone a wish could have been super helpful for Thanos to defeat the Avengers or vice versa) and Thor suddenly gets powers he never had before. He passes his power onto a bunch of kids at one point, turning them into a mighty fighting force (despite having zero previous battle experience) but since when can Thor just pass his powers onto others? Why didn’t he pass his powers onto every single human being on Earth while fighting Thanos or any previous villain? Seems like billions of people worldwide fighting might have made things a lot easier in the past. Natalie Portman returns as Jane Foster but everything involving her plot line feels so rushed. Pacing is a problem as this two hour movie should have been closer to two and a half hours due to how much was jammed in and Foster’s story arc suffers the most from the rushed, breakneck pacing. There are predictable moments (will Thor endanger the universe by putting everyone in danger to save the love of his life? I wonder!) and just a weak script. While I admire that Waititi is basically putting out one movie per year (super impressive), maybe if he took his time instead of having his hands in a dozen different projects and took more time between each movie he directs, the end results would be better. While not a complete failure and showcasing some great performances, a strong score/soundtrack and some solid and colorful visuals, the weak script, forced woke content, betrayal of characters and Waititi being his own worst enemy makes this ultimately mediocre, like most individual Thor movies.

#LessBloodMoreGorr / #GorribleAttemptsAtComedy / #NotTheGOAT / #MusicByFosterThePeople / #TimeToBaleOnWaititi / #MarvelsWhatSif?

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