Thor: Love and Thunder Is a Brilliant Blend of Humour and Emotion

Waititi questions the importance of having Marvel films during the grievous times we live in
Thor: Love and Thunder Is a Brilliant Blend of Humour and Emotion

Taika Waititi is the best thing to happen to the Thor franchise. The God of Thunder has had a tragic past. He has seen the death of many of his loved ones. This is one of the disadvantages of being immortal. Superheroes either die as heroes or live long enough to see all their loved ones put into the coffin. Logan was one such superhero, and director James Mangold buried him into layers of sadness in 2017. Waititi does not want his audience to drown in sorrow. He makes grief palatable and fun for easy digestion. The pill is sweetened, but the pain is still there if you concentrate on it. Such an approach is suitable for a Marvel movie, as one part of the audience can take the film lightheartedly while the other can appreciate Waititi's maturity.

People complain that Marvel movies tend to crack jokes even in serious situations. In Thor: Love and Thunder, this bug is converted into a palpable feature. Suffering from cancer? Don't lie in a hospital bed with gloomy eyes. Instead, wield Mjölnir and think of a punchline. Are you lonely? Don't be depressed when you can actively deny it by telling yourself you are the glue holding a team of guardians together. Did you lose a loved one on a battlefield? Don't cry. Talk to a rocky face about the hot ways you can produce babies. Is there a galactic killer butchering your species? Ignore him. What's important is that you are well-prepared for the upcoming whatchamacallit event, which I guess is something naughty; that is why our beloved censor board beeped it. But even Waititi cannot always hide that feeling of suffering. When its weight becomes too much to bear, he unleashes melodramatic scenes that aim for your tear duct.

Watching a Marvel movie today has become hectic. You cannot simply jump into a new release before going through previous installments (this is the 29th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe). Waititi addresses this homework-like task and makes fun of it using Matt Damon and his drama team. You might remember them from Thor: Ragnarok, where they performed the events of Thor: The Dark World in front of spectators. They return to do the same thing here by putting up a laughable recreation of that scene from Thor: Ragnarok where Odin died, and Hela entered and broke Thor's hammer. In fact, this time, they become more than just comic relief. Waititi uses them to make a statement. After Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale) kidnaps all the children from Asgard, Damon asks if they can perform a show depicting whatever just happened to them. He says something along these lines of, "Because that is what people need during distress. More entertainment." With plenty of depressing things going on in this world, including the war between Ukraine and Russia, Waititi questions the importance of Marvel movies (or movies in general) during such a grievous time. I was reminded of the recent Cannes incident where a woman was photographed naked, the Ukraine flag and the words "stop raping us" painted on her body. The fact that Damon and the team think of staging their next play instead of pondering over the situation either informs us that our filmmakers are either too busy in their own world or are thinking of turning the ongoing real-life disaster into "entertainment" for the audience.

In Thor: Love and Thunder, gods are selfish, afraid and vulnerable. They don't listen to your prayers because they simply don't care. They say never meet your idol, and Gorr meets the most horrible god who ends up mocking the disciple. So next time, if you think your god is not listening to you, start praying to someone else. There are many of them up there. Pick someone as good as Thor. He not only fulfills his promise of rescuing the children but also provides them with temporary superpowers. That visual sums up why Waititi's film works so well. Like Thor giving powers to children, the director transfers his zeal into us like a shiny yellow current penetrating our senses. The image that follows, of Thor jumping in the air with an army of children as his backup, is ridiculous and gleefully exciting at the same time. Other visual creations like Omnipotence City and space dolphins are beautifully rendered and truly inject magnificence into this celestial adventure. The only element missing is Led Zeppelin's 'Immigrant Song'. It was there in Thor: Ragnarok, and it elevated the action sequences to a whole new exciting level. I kept hoping for its return, but it never made its appearance. I hope Waititi uses it again in a future Thor adventure (it's tailor-made and appropriate for Thor's thunderous fighting scenes).

Thor: Love and Thunder is a comic book movie for both adults and children. It's funny, but it never sacrifices its drama. It pushes all the right buttons and evokes the required emotions from within us. You laugh, you cry, you come out high. If you are planning to watch it in theatres, go for 2D. The 3D version I watched was slightly dark and dampened the vibrancy of the bright colours. You don't need glasses to immerse yourself in this lovely, thunderous production.

Related Stories

No stories found.