Thor (2011)

Among the early Marvel movies, Kenneth Branagh’s “Thor” is easily the most visually stunning entry. Branagh’s camera is as much a character here as anybody else, moving fluidly across the movie without drawing attention to itself, and heightening the movie’s themes and visual iconography along the way. Additionally, Chris Hemsworth is perfectly cast in the titular role, bringing considerable charm and superstar charisma to an otherwise unmemorable role, but it’s Tom Hiddleston’s electrifying performance as Loki that manages to grip the viewer’s attention in every scene he’s in.  The story itself is almost negligible because the Marvel movies concentrate more on moving the overarching narrative forward, but “Thor” manages to demarcate itself from its brethren through Branagh’s extraordinary direction and his knack with actors.

Rating: ★★★★ (out of 5)

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