Are you suffering from superhero movie fatigue? Judging from the box office numbers, most of you probably aren’t. But we are. We contracted this illness back in 2013, when “Thor: The Dark World” offered a lot of forgettable, clangy nonsense, and made it official that each entry in the deathless Marvel Cinematic Universe would exist primarily to set up endless further installments. As it stands, we like the weird ones (“Ant-Man,” “Doctor Strange”), though they’re still compromised. We aren’t even buying that self-satisfied, smug renegade comic book movie “Deadpool.” All that being said, and we may live to regret saying this, we’re actually semi-hesitantly excited for another movie about Chris Hemsworth’s ripped Norse god, namely “Thor: Ragnarok.”
Our confidence in this perhaps foolhardy opinion is exacerbated by the new trailer (see below). While most of the MCU films are now jam-packed battle royales, stuffing any number of Marvel superheroes into stories filled with too much exposition, “Ragnarok” is just Thor (and eventually Hulk). And it lets its freak flag fly. It’s set in Thor’s own alternate dimension, where Cate Blanchett looks like a goth and Jeff Goldblum wears eye-shadow. Drippy love interest Natalie Portman is gone, allowing Hemsworth — an eternally underrated comic actor — to goof it up almost as much as he did in last year’s under-seen “Ghostbusters.”
Another reason we’re stoked is because of its director: Taika Waititi, the deeply eccentric New Zealand filmmaker and actor of last year’s delightful bush romp “Hunt for the Wilderpeople” and the epically quotable vampire mock-doc “What We Do in the Shadows.” Outside-the-box directors don’t always mesh well with Marvel; the great Edgar Wright infamously jumped ship on “Ant-Man” right before filming commenced. But since Waititi made it all the way through to a finished product, we’re going to assume or at least hope that it still feels very him. And judging from the dorky-hulky trailer, it doesn’t look like business as usual. And besides, it features the very awesome and very welcome Tessa Thompson, looking very badass as Valkyrie.