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Review Thor: Love and Thunder (2022) and The Marvels (2023)

genre: comic book adaptation, action, adventure, science fiction

It was my intention to rewatch both of the films before I would review them. But honestly, I don't think these titles warrant that time, so I will do this from memory.

First, Thor: Love and Thunder.  After Thor: Ragnarok I thought Taika Waititi could do no wrong. I mean, I already appreciate him for his comedic stuff, But wasn't sure if he had what it takes to make a proper comic book film. And it seemed like that he was a fan. Well, turns out he is not. And like with many recent Marvel films, this one also is suffering from woke crap. When I read that Natalie Portman was returning as the female Thor my heart stopped for a few seconds. What on Earth were they thinking? Gradually, I was getting used to the idea and after having seen Jane Foster's arc I am not as opposed as I was in the beginning. But was her subplot even necessary? Did it anything new or creative in the MCU? Not really! Sure, some people got their wish concerning the cosplay gender reversal. Isn't that a niche thing? My objection to the female Thor is not that she is female. I mean, naturally a female version is sexier and more pleasant to look at. The fact that she can do everything better than Thor, who has been Thor for a long time, while she has been Thor for a few hours, is insulting. Set aside how she becomes Thor in the first place. The concept of it is beyond stupid. 

That being said, I could have lived with this had the film been fun and action packed as previous films. And for whatever reason, Waititi decided to go full comedy. Christian Bale is good when he is on the screen but is done such a disservice since his screen presence is pretty limited. He is just the villain of the week and apparently so powerful that he can slay gods. A figure like that deserves more and better.

Overall, this film is a big middle finger towards people who have enjoyed the Marvel film thus far. And as much as I liked Taiki Waititi I can't condone that kind of betrayal.

When they had announced The Marvels (long before the trailer) I honestly thought that Marvel was going to send off Captain Marvel. Quite a lot of rumours were suggesting that they weren't happy with Brie Larson and with two other Captain Marvel persona's around she could have been replaced by them. In my mind, they would have to deal with a galactic threat and the only way to stop it was Captain Marvel sacrificing her life. I think this would have been a good solution if there was any truth to those rumours.

What we got instead was not even close. The story is so bland that it's hard to make out what they were going for.  It was pretty generic. I can appreciate female power from time to time. But not if it is boring and bland. Why not give these three threats unlike they faced before and where they truly had to work with each other to fight the evil forces. They kinda do, but not satisfyingly. The whole powers switching gimmick got on my nerves pretty quickly.

I am probably one of the few who likes Ms. Marvel. I do think that the show did more than the usual superhero stuff. It actually put attention to the separation of India and Pakistan. It showed how impactful and disruptive this was. But it also gave us a very sincere origin story. Kamala Khan provides most of the comic relief, and again her sincerity is what fuels most events. Too bad that the other Marvels had different ideas. 

Still, I can't say that the overall viewing experience was horrible. For the most part, I found myself entertained while it lasted. It's not a memorable film, nor does it feel like it has any meaning in the grand scheme of things. But that is more due to the lack of foresight and world building Marvel had in the first three phases. It's decent once you are able to let go of the wokeness and lack of story.

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