After a fit of rage that almost thrusts his people in to all out war, Thor, the Norse god of thunder, son of all-father, Odin, and brother of Loki, is banished from his Asgard-ian home. Vulnerable and disoriented in Midgard (known to some of us as Earth), Thor must find a way to redeem himself and restore peace to Asgard.
Thor falls flat on several critical marks. First, it falls prey to that great temptation of many an adaptation: to tell when one should show. Expect to be cheated out of the following interests: Loki’s jealousy of his brother, Thor’s love for his father, and the audience’s admiration for Thor himself. (Seriously, just wait for Hawkeye’s line, “I think I’m starting to root for this guy.”) Second, essential emotional elements are either entirely missing or shoddily constructed. I defy you to tell me why Thor should be in love with the Natalie Portman character by the end of the film. Of course we are all in love with Ms. Portman, which is probably the sleight-of-hand the filmmakers were hoping to pull off in casting her. Finally (and I really could go on here), the cockeyed camera work loses its linguistic efficacy when applied with such liberality. Too often soaring or floating off, making a misnomer of depth of field, Branagh’s camera robs us of the same weight and depth that are missing from Thor's simplistic narrative.
- Thor (Branagh 2011) @ AMC Loews Metreon 16