Friday Box Office – THOR Scores $25.7 Million on Opening Day

OK, so we all know that “summer” started early this year with the $86.2 million launch of Fast Five.  The only question was how last weekend’s massive debut would impact Thor – the superhero flick that, according to the calendar, should have been this year’s first blockbuster.  Thorearned an estimated $25.7 million from its 3,995 locations on Friday including the $3.25 million he took in from midnight screenings.  That puts the Marvel hero on track for a $60 million first weekend or, right about where the big guy was expected to land after Vin Diesel’s crew drove off with his start-of-summer thunder seven days ago.  That same crew came in second on Friday, falling off by 70% for an estimated $10.5 million.  With its new domestic total of $117.8 million, Fast Five should be passing Rango to become the highest-grossing release of 2011 right about… now!  This week’s two romantic-comedy counter-programmers – Something Borrowed and Jumping the Broom – brought in $4.8 and $4.1 million respectively.  Full details and analysis tomorrow.

2Fast Five$10,500,000$117.8
3Something Borrowed$4,800,000$4.8
4Jumping the Broom$4,175,000$4.1

Ethical Braxton in dilemma choosing between children and nude Playboy offer!

 Toni Braxton, the American Rand B singer, even though struggling with a financial crunch, wants time before finalizing on the offer of posing nude for the Playboy Magazine due to any possible negative impact on her two sons.
Editors of the men's publication approached the 'Un-Break My Heart' hitmaker to strip off in January after she filed a report for bankruptcy three months earlier in October.ut the star is hesitant to agree to the lucrative deal because she worries her young boys Denim and Diezel will get teased about the sexy spread at school.
"I'm thinking about it. I haven't said yes. One of the reasons why I'm considering, or I guess I should say basking in the moment, is because I'm older now" Contact Music quoted her as saying in a US talk show.
"I'm totally flattered, like, 'You want me to be a cover girl?' I haven't made a decision, because my kids are in the booby stage (at) eight or nine (years old). They just discovered (them). 'Mummy, boobies, boobies!' I don't want their friends to say, 'I just saw your mum's boobies," she added.
"I would love to pose with (Playboy founder) Hugh Hefner though. He's the sexiest guy I know over 30... Of course it will be tastefully done... Just a lil T (t**s) and A (a**). They have asked me about 3 times before" she twitted earlier.

Exclusive:Robert Pattinson second richest Brit actor with 32 million pounds fortune

 'Twilight' actor, Robert Pattinson is the second richest British actor with a total fortune of 32 million pounds, according to the Sunday Times Rich List.
Harry Potter's Daniel Radcliffe, 21, tops the list with 48 million pounds, including last year's earnings of 6 million pounds, reports The Sun.
Pattinson was 2010's top earning young Brit star with 19 million pounds, and is reportedly set to net 2.5 pc of the next two Twilights' takings.
Keira Knightley, stands third in the list of richest Brit actors with 30 million pounds.
Whereas, Kiera Chaplin, Charlie Chaplin's granddaughter is at the fourth position with 28 million pounds. 'Harry Potter' stars, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson are joint fifth with 24 million pounds.

'Glee' Cover of Rebecca Black's 'Friday' and Adele's 'Rolling in the Deep'

"Glee" has kicked off the first weekend of May by releasing their take on "Friday". The male stars like Chord Overstreet, Kevin McHale and Mark Salling get auto-tuned in this cover version. They are going to perform the revamped tune on "Prom Queen" episode which airs next Tuesday, May 10. 

Soon after their rendition was out for Gleeks' listening pleasure, Rebecca Black, the singer who recorded the original viral hit and made it famous via YouTube, took to her Twitter to reveal her excitement over the re-recorded song. The teenager wrote, "Just heard Glee's version of Friday!! :D." 

Beside having Sam, Artie and Puck on "Friday", the upcoming "Prom Queen" episode will also feature Rachel Berry singing Adele's hit "Rolling in the Deep". The female New Directions member played by Lea Michele teams up with Jonathan Groff's Jesse St. James for the cover version. 

The other songs on the next week setlist are "Dancing Queen" from ABBA, "Isn't She Lovely" from Stevie Wonder, "Jar of Hearts" from Christina Perri, and "I'm Not Gonna Teach Your Boyfriend How to Dance With You" from Black Kids. 

Paris Hilton Issues Apology for Verbal Jab at Lindsay Lohan

Paris Hilton is apparently ridden by guilt for poking fun at Lindsay Lohan's jewelry theft case. A day after a clip of her making the verbal jab at the troubled actress surfaced, the hotelheiress/media personality issued a public apology via TMZ. 

"I apologize to Lindsay for the comment that I made. I was joking around but it was thoughtless and unnecessary," said the 30-year-old socialite when expressing her regret for her remark. She additionally mentioned, "I am reaching out to Lindsay so I can tell her myself." 

On Thursday, May 5, TMZ put out a clip of Paris' new reality show, "The World According to Paris". In it, the "Repo! The Genetic Opera" actress gives a homeless woman her earrings, but the woman mistakes her for Lindsay. In a voiceover afterward, she said, "If I were Lindsay, I would be stealing earrings ... not giving them away." 

Hours after the clip was put out, TMZ came out with the story that Lindsay, who was accused of stealing a $2,500 necklace from a Venice, California jewelry store in January, is furious over the remark. She reportedly told friends, "[Paris] is mean. You don't have to make fun of serious matters in people's lives to be funny." 

Demi Lovato Dyes Hair Back to Brunette

Demi Lovato has recently changed the color of her hair for a lighter look. The young actress, who pulled out of her Disney Channel hit series "Sonny with a Chance" for the sake of her recovery, returned to being a brunette after dying her locks black post her rehab stint. 

The former girlfriend of Joe Jonas unraveled her hair transformation by posting a photo of herself with the new hair via Twitter. Along with the image, she posted a caption that read, "Bee-tee-dubz.... Back to brown hair!!!" In a tweet that came following, she wrote, "Looks lighter in the sunlight.. Yayyy summer..." 

In another news, Demi has unveiled her "ultimate stay strong playlist". A contributing editor for Seventeen magazine, she first explained in the introduction, "Music has always been a huge part of my life and has helped me some tough times. Certain songs always give me confidence, put me in a good mood, and inspire me." 

The 18-year-old songstress went on to reveal that Eminem's "Not Afraid", BarlowGirl's "Surrender", Stacie Orrico's "Strong Enough" and Sam Cooke's "A Change Is Gonna Come" are some of the songs making the cut. Speaking of "Not Afraid", she shared, "This song is really inspiring to me because Eminem's album was based on his recovery. This song made me feel confident in conquering my diseases." 

First Set Photos of 'The Dark Knight Rises' Leaked

Pictures claimed to be the first set photos of "The Dark Knight Rises" have leaked online. The images show a pit filled with what is seen as green screen, which makes the place looks like a green "pool". 

The "pool" is believed to be the Lazarus Pit, the place which Ra's al Ghul visits when he needs to heal himself and keep his youth appearance. The Lazarus Pit rumor surfaces following recent report that Josh Pence is cast as young Ra's al Ghul. The character is said to appear in a flashback. 

A sequel for "The Dark Knight", "The Dark Knight Rises" will be released across the nation on July 20, 2012, with Christopher Nolan serving behind the lens, and Christian Bale reprising his role as Bruce Wayne.Anne Hathaway and Tom Hardy are added as new cast members to play Selina Kyle a.k.a. Catwoman, and villainous Bane respectively. 

Imagine Denies 'Dark Tower' Turnaround, Universal Remains Mum

Soon after words leaked that Universal, Imagine and NBC's ambitious project "The Dark Tower" is in trouble, Imagine president Michael Rosenberg came with denial. "Dark Tower is not in turnaround," he told THR, adding "there are issues and on-going budget discussions with almost every film in development." 

The movie based on Stephen King's novel of the same name was developed as a film trilogy with a TV component in between the movies. The latest report said that Universal and its new owners at Comcast are facing "serious" budget issues which stall the project. In addition, sources said that the final portion of the trilogy has been found "creatively lacking". 

Universal paid $5 million for the rights only. Having Ron Howard and Brian Grazer as well as writer-producer Akiva Goldsman on board won't be exactly cheap. Oscar winner Javier Bardem is also in talks to star in the first movie and the first TV component, with options for the other two movies. His salary in the movies may be reasonable but there's a chance that he would be paid more than average TV star. 

Universal is yet to comment on the turnaround rumor. If the studio indeed puts the project in such position, then it would have to pay a $10 million penalty. 

'Modern Family' Preview of Lady GaGa Tribute Episode

"Gossip Girl" and "Glee" had done it, and now it's "Modern Family" turn to make a tribute to Lady GaGa. In the May 11 episode titled "Good Cop Bad Dog", Cameron is bedridden with the flu, leaving Mitchell torn about the Lady GaGa concert tickets they have for later that night. 

"Cam and Mitch have tickets to a Lady GaGa concert and Cam gets sick, and I desperately still want to go," Jesse Tyler Ferguson teased to TV Guide last month. "So I do everything in my power to get him to let me go, and that might include slightly drugging him a little bit, so maybe he falls asleep. And I sneak out. And Lady GaGa may or may not be on the episode. I'm just kidding. She's not." 

Also in the episode, Phil and Claire swap parenting roles for the day, Claire will be the fun-loving good cop and Phil the disciplinarian bad cop, and it's literally a shock to each kid's system. Meanwhile Gloria is at it again, taking in every sob story and stray she comes across, Jay finds himself dispensing business advice to an overzealous entrepreneur about his dog training business scheme. 

The episode would be directed by former child star Fred Savage who is best known for his work on the classic sitcom "The Wonder Years". Tony Award-winner Lin-Manuel Miranda, who starred in "In the Heights," is to appear in the episode as the overzealous entrepreneur. 

Taylor Swift Is Broadway Star in 'Mean' Music Video

 Taylor Swift makes it clear in her newly-debuted music video for her latest single "Mean" that she has no love for bullies. The country music singer sends inspiring message to her fans about not letting those, who are "mean, and pathetic", to take them down.

The music video was directed by Declan Whitebloom, and was filmed over two days at the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles. It features Taylor playing banjo in a classic set, similar to that of 2011 Academy of Country Music Awards, before later performing on a "Broadway" set.

Taylor chose the concept and was involved in developing the treatment for the video. "We got on really well. It's rare when you connect with an artist that quickly, but we share a quirky, offbeat sense of humor." Declan said. "She was keenly involved in writing the treatment, casting and wardrobe. And she stayed for both the 15-hour shooting days, even when she wasn't in the scenes."

'Twilight' Director Catherine Hardwicke to Helm 'Bitch Posse'

 Catherine Hardwicke's next directorial projects after "Twilight" continue to get highlights. After tackling "Red Riding Hood", she is now on board "The Bitch Posse" which is a movie based on Martha O'Connor novel and which script is penned by actress slash scribe Tristine Skyler.

The novel which was published in 2006 follows the story of three friends, Cherry, Amy and Rennie, high school seniors who come from troubled homes and form a dangerous alliance called the Bitch Posse. Something occurs that rips apart the friendship and haunts them into adulthood. One of them ends up in a mental institution, one is a promiscuous failed writer and the other is having trouble in her marriage.

The book's style is to switch between high school years and adulthood. "After pages of vodka, cocaine, 'f**king' and 'cutting' (in both past and present narratives), the friends' terrible secret finally comes to light," says the novel's description via Publisher's Weekly.

Virginia Madsen and Karly Meola, whose production company Title IX optioned the book, will produce along with Miranda Bailey and Matthew Leutwyler through their Ambush Entertainment banner.

Lady GaGa and Stevie Nicks to Perform on 'American Idol' Finale

 Lady GaGa is going to perform on "American Idol", according to Perez Hilton. The report comes hot on heels of news that the Mother Monster has been tapped to mentor the four remaining contestants of the singing competition.

While GaGa's help in mentoring is needed for the top 4 performances, her performance is reportedly set for the finale of the singing contest. The "Born This Way" hitmaker is rumored to be joined by Fleetwood Mac singer-songwriter Stevie Nicks.

Aerosmith have also been mentioned as a musical guest of the finale. In a recent interview with Billboard, "Idol" judge Steven Tyler said, "We're playing the last show of the season. When I came on board, of course they were talking about, 'Are you going to sing with the contestants?' I said, 'I'll do a song, sure,' but it was always my intention, always, to get Aerosmith on the show."

Nothing has been confirmed just yet. A few days ago, Lady GaGa was scheduled to premiere her "Judas" music video on the Ryan Seacrest-hosting show. The plan was scrapped without further explanation though.

Pics: Katie Holmes Turns Unsophisticated for Retail Therapy

 Katie Holmes has gone from glamorous to unsophisticated. After turning heads on a recent red carpet appearance with her stunning black dress, the Jackie Kennedy of "The Kennedys" was snapped looking way too casual as she went shopping at Barneys in Beverly Hills on Friday afternoon, May 6.

For the retail therapy outing, the 32-year-old wife of Tom Cruise opted to go with a form-fitting red tank top. She paired up the belly-showing top with snug jeans and a pair of black flats. Going solo without daughter Suri, the actress was seen cruising around the shoe section of the store with a wallet in hand.

On Thursday night, May 5, Katie accompanied husband Tom to the Simon Wiesenthal Center's Annual National Tribute Dinner at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, where he picked up the Humanitarian Award. Coming to the event, she looked stunning in a low-cut black dress with green satin waistband. She completed her look with black sandals and gold earrings with bright green jewels.

Katie's husband Tom was honored with the award for his support of the Jewish rights organization. Upon receiving the kudo, he said, "It's a tremendous honor. For me and my family this is really a very special evening and I look at what Simon Wiesenthal accomplished with his life, what this museum represents." 

Warner Bros. Developing Two 'Tarzan' Films

 Warner Bros. Pictures is reportedly planning to make two "Tarzan" movies. The first film will be written by Adam Cozad, who provided script for "Archangel", while the second flick will be written by Craig Brewer, the director and scribe for "Black Snake Moan".

Deadline reports that after the writers finish the scripts, the studio will decide which one will be turned into a film first. The site also mentions that the rejected one will serve as a draft for the film sequel.

Hollywood studios have been trying to make a movie about Tarzan. Back in December 2006, a project about the jungle man was developed by Universal Pictures with Mexican director Guillermo del Toro as a possible director. Later in September 2008 when the project has been set up at Warner Bros., Stephen Sommers was reported to take over del Toro's place.

I don't smooch in movies, never will: Shah Rukh Khan

In 22 years of his showbiz career, Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan has perhaps hardly ever locked lips with his heroines and says he never will. He admits he is not just uncomfortable about kissing on screen, but doesn't even know how to do it.
"I don't kiss on screen because I don't know how to do it. I don't do it because I feel weird...and I feel those who do it in films, do it well already," Shah Rukh told reporters here Friday.
"I feel discomfort in doing two things for films. When anyone comes to narrate a story to me, I tell them two things - main ghoda nahin chalaunga aur main choomunga nahin (I won't ride a horse and I won't kiss)," added the 45-year-old.
Shah Rukh's well-known witty side came through when a young journalist asked him if reports that he has kissed Kareena Kapoor for his upcoming sci-fi superhero film "Ra.One", are true.
Looking dashing in a formal black suit, he seemed to be quite amused at being asked such a question at a press conference meant for the formal announcement of Tag Heuer's tie-up with Buddh International Circuit, the host of Formula One in India.
"Where did you read these reports," he asked.
"They are all over the internet, probably reported from Mumbai," she said nonchalantly.
"How old are you my dear?" asked Shah Rukh, and the lady responded: "I am 25. But you shouldn't ask a girl her age."
Came SRK's quick rejoinder: "Well, dear, you don't ask such questions to men! You've asked me this, I am a simple guy, married man with kids...but don't ask such a question to men on the street! But, because you are young, and possibly just stepped into journalism, please don't believe whatever you read on the internet. It may not always be true."
Shah Rukh says if a film requires him to do things which make him uncomfortable, he quits it.
"I don't kiss simply because I am not comfortable doing it. I am pretty uncomfortable even at laughing in my whenever there is a scene where I have to laugh, or where there is a scene where I am uncomfortable or I feel I will not be able to do justice to it, and whenever there are animals involved and I feel they might be mistreated, I quit the film in its narration itself."

Natalie Portman's strange pregnancy cravings

Natalie Portman is going gaga over pickle as she is all set to change her breakfast habit due to her pregnancy cravings.
The 29-year-old Hollywood actress in fact ordered about half a dozen giant pickles and relished it with the additional taste of ketchup.
“Her friend ordered a breakfast with eggs. Natalie told her she couldn’t look at the eggs because they were too slimy,” the Daily Express quoted a source who saw the actress at LA deli Canter’s, as saying.
“Her friend told her that her own wacky eating habits were making her feel ill,” the source continued. 

I used to have two hour sex sessions daily: Kirstie Alley

Actress Kirstie Alley has boasted that she used to have sex for two hours every day.
Alley, 60, made the revelation while speaking on ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’.
“I really hadn’t had a boyfriend for the last ten years - a serious boyfriend. It was the best ten years of my life. I had a lot of freedom,” Contactmusic quoted her as saying.
“The way I used to pick guys was so shallow. Hot? OK, that’ll be my husband.
“Here’s my big revelation. I decided that in the best of times you have two hours of sex a day, so you have 22 hours left,” she said.
At this point show host Ellen stopped the former ‘Cheers’ actress to clarify her statement
“Whoa, whoa, what? Two hours a day?” Ellen asked.
Alley, who has been married twice, to high school sweetheart Bob Alley and actor Parker Stevenson - jokingly replied: “Not enough?”
She later clarified her estimated time spent lovemaking, saying: “There’s the prelude, the sex and there’s the winding down.”

Robert Pattinson has revealed that he 'never' uses Twitter

Robert Pattinson has revealed that he ‘never’ uses Twitter.
At a press conference in Sydney with ‘Water For Elephants’ co-star Reese Witherspoon, the ‘Twilight’ star spoke of his views on social networking site.
"I never use it," the Herald Sun quoted him as saying.
"I have never found anything interesting on it. I don't know how it works," he added.
His only Twitter experience was being in a restaurant and seeing fellow diners tweeting his location.
"I wanted to shove the phone down their throat," he said.
"Do they want it to be complete mayhem when they leave the restaurant?" he added.
He said he doesn't understand why his fans don't just come up and say "hello" the old-fashioned way, adding, "What I don't like is people being sneaky, tweeting and taking photographs."

Johnny Depp Had a Hard Time Following the Plot in 'Pirates' 2 and 3

If the second and third Pirates of the Caribbean movies left you feeling confused, you're not alone. Johnny Depp admits in a new interview that he felt lost on the set of the two sequels.

“They had to invent a trilogy out of nowhere,” he toldEntertainment Weekly. “It was plot driven and complicated. I remember talking to [director Gore Verbinski] at certain points during production of two or three, and saying: ‘I don’t really know what this means.’ He said, ‘Neither do I, but let’s just shoot it.’ This guy is this guy’s dad, and this guy was in love with this broad. It was like, ‘What?’”

Depp explains that for the fourth movie, the material was stripped down to its basic components, and a new, simpler story was developed to avoid overlapping plot lines that might lose the audience. Depp, whose Jack Sparrow character is the heart of the franchise, said he doesn't know how those other two sequels turned out.

“To be perfectly honest, I didn’t see them,” he said.. “I did see the first one. I have not seen the second one or the third one.”

Prince William and Kate Middleton Heading to Hollywood!

They're Hollywood stars in their own right now, so it's suitable that Kate Middleton and Prince William would take a trip to La-La land. After rumors of a possible Hollywood visit started buzzing, the English palace has released a canned statement confirming the whispers. 

 "The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will visit California, United States of America, following their tour of Canada in July this year," a statement from St. Jame's Palace said.

They'll apparently be in The Golden State from July 8th to the 10th, after their extensive tour of Canada, and a very detailed itinerary of their travels will be released "at a later date." Can't the Palace just say they're going to go bask in the sun, stay at a beachside 5-star resort, and meet some stars? We're just assuming that's most accurate. 

Kate's never been to the big ol' USA, so the Los Angeles boardwalk roller blading is destined to be a culture shock for the Brit.

Kajol Devgan is joining back to work after her delivery

The beautiful and versatile Bollywood diva Kajol is back to work, shooting for different ads. The actress had taken a maternity break since last year September and had given birth to her son Yug on September 13. But when work came calling to her she did not lack behind in showing her professionalism and is working on 8 brands everyday back to back. The actress’s contracts have been renewed and she’s been even signed up a new brand, Lifestyle.
She was seen out of action since last year but is seen back in action again, though at this time she is shooting for ads only. The actress has made sure to commit time to her family on weekends. She had even informed her brand manager that family will always remain her first priority. The diva has always been very choosy about her outfits, work and everything else. She has always looked at the creative aspect of every venture which makes her work look simple yet stylish. Manish Malhotra who has been designing her outfits for films as well as endorsements agrees to the point that she has been very selective about everything. Now since she is back into shooting for brands, we hope to see her shooting for films too.

Salman Khan Kissed 108 Times, A new World Record!!

The Bollywood actors will be envying our handsomebachelor Salman Khan who was kissed 108 times in the show named ‘Guiness World Record- Ab India Todega’ aired on Colors channel which is hosted by the beautiful Priety Zinta. The star broke an old record of an actor from Japan who was kissed 87 times in one minute and to breakthat record Salman Khan had to be kissed more than 87 times in the same duration. Now this was big challenge for the group of girls who kissed him.
Why would they lack behind? Living up to the standards of the task the girls helped Salman set a new Guiness World Record. Well we are thinking what Salman had applied on his face before coming to this show? Not 87 times, not even 97 times but 108 times he was kissed. Must say the finale of this show was really kissable and surely must have envied the girls all over the world. In this show people from various parts of India had come and showcased their talent and had broken old Guiness records to set new ones. Till date 45 records have been broken and with setting up a new in the finale, just add another feather to the cap.

Katrina Kaif, Salman back again in 'Ek Tha Tiger'

Whether we see them as a couple off screen or not but we really can’t strike out their chemistry on screen. Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif will be seen romancing each other yet again under the Yashraj banner in the film titled ‘Ek Tha Tiger’. This is a romantic thriller which will be directed by Kabir Khan who made his presence strongly felt with the movie ‘New York’ and will be produced by iconic Aditya Chopra. Salman will be working with Yashraj films for the first time although Aditya Chopra and Salman Khan discussed on various projects in the past.
Post Salman and Katrina’s break up, the duo will be seen together romancing it all out after a long-long time. The story of the movie is written by Aditya Chopra whereas the screenplay and dialogues are written by Kabir Khan and Neelesh Mishra. The music of the film will be given by our very own, known music director Pritam. Mr Yash Chopra who had earlier worked with Salman’s father Mr Salim Khan on various projects like Trishul, Deewar and Kala Pathar is very much excited to have his son on board. The shooting hits the floors early this July and is slated to release in mid 2012.

THOR Review

Marvel’s Thor is the toughest of the lead Avengers to bring to the big screen.  He’s a cross between a space alien and a Norse god, he wields a hammer named Mjolnir instead of standard superhero weapons like guns or swords, and he wears a cape.  The character could fall so easily into camp territory, but director Kenneth Branagh takes the bold approach of playing the character completely straight but still keeps the movie fun and light.  This balance of broad comedy and bombastic action mixed with straight-faced drama comes from the perfect combination of lead actors Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston.  While the film does have some problems in developing the supporting characters, its biggest sin is in the 3D post-conversion which turns the bright shining lights of Asgard into a dim, blurry mess.  But if you catch the film in 2D, Thor is going to be some of the most fun you have in a theater this year.
Decades after the Asgardian king Odin (Anthony Hopkins) makes a truce with the Frost Giants of Jotunheim, Odin’s son Thor (Hemsworth) is set to take the throne.  Thor is cocky, brash, and vainglorious—the polar opposite of his brother Loki (Hiddleston) who is quiet, calm, and calculating.  On the day of Thor’s coronation, a trio of Frost Giants interrupts the party by attempting to steal back a superpowered casket that Odin took as the spoils of war.  The thieves are quickly obliterated by a giant mechanical guard known as “Destroyer”, but Thor is thirsty for vengeance.  Along with Loki, female warrior Sif (Jaimie Alexander), and the Warriors Three (Tadanobu Asano, Josh Dallas, and Ray Stevenson), Thor travels to Jotunheim, battles with the Frost Giants, and almost destroys the fragile truce that’s existed between the two realms.  Odin, disappointed with Thor’s actions, strips the warrior of his powers and banishes him to Earth.  Meanwhile, Loki remains in Asgard and continues to scheme his way to the throne.
Watching the trailers, my biggest concern about Thor was how the film would handle the character’s life on Earth.  Everything on Asgard looked grand, but I was worried that sticking the character on our planet without his superpowers would lead to a dull story that would strip away what makes the character unique.  But Hemsworth’s performance always lets us know that Thor is there.  He may not be summoning down lightning bolts, but Hemsworth conveys the character’s easy charm, rugged nobility, and astounding confidence to the point where we always see the cape and armor even if they’re not physically present.  Thor’s attitude and the way he plays off astrophysicists Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) and Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgard) provides the bulk of the film’s humor and keeps the film from falling into tired “fish out of water” jokes.
Where Branagh keeps the movie serious is with Loki’s story.  Thor may be the title character and the hero, but Thor is just as much about Loki’s origin.  Hiddleston does an outstanding job of defining the character without having Loki fall into a predictable performance.  Lesser actors would have turned Loki to either the familiar moustache-twirling schemer or put the character into a constant sate of petulant jealousy.  But Hiddleston makes the wise decision to bring a great sadness and regret to Loki and that choice pays off in a big way.  Hiddleston forces us to empathize with the villain and while the story is broad enough that there can be no debate as to whether or not Loki is the “bad guy”, we can also understand where the character is coming from and that his motives aren’t “Evil” in big flashing letters.
But between the character arcs of Thor and Loki, the film has some difficulty in squeezing in all of the supporting characters and relationships.  The presence of SHIELD and the foundations for The Avengers are integrated far better than they were in Iron Man 2 and the film is even able to introduce a new Avenger without slowing down the plot.  However, the relationship between Thor and Jane—the movie’s romance subplot—is kept afloat not because the characters spend so much time together, but because of the strong performances and chemistry between Hemsworth and Portman.  The Warriors Three and Sif are also undeveloped and the movie misses a key opportunity to define the Asgardian warriors during the battle on Jotunheim.
But the battle on Jotunheim has far bigger problems than a lack of character development.  Marvel made the greedy decision to give Thor a 3D post-conversion that only served to jack up the cost of ticket prices while providing a worse visual experience in return.  The battle on Jotunheim is the movie’s first big set piece.  It shows us what Thor can do when he’s wielding his hammer and it’s one of only three major action scenes in the movie.  The 3D reduces the battle to a blurry grey mess by draining all of the color and definition from the visuals.  There is not a single moment inThor where I thought “The 3D made this better,” but there were plenty of moments where I thought “The 3D is ruining this movie.”  If you see Thor—and you should—save your money, see it in 2D, and let Marvel and the rest of Hollywood know that we’re sick of shitty 3D post-conversions.
Thor proves two things: First up—the character and his universe can be successfully adapted to the big screen, and in the hands of a director like Kenneth Branagh who knows how to play up a Shakespearean angle while still keeping the film relatable to modern audience, Thor works wonders.  Hemsworth and Hiddleston keep the film anchored in honest character moments that allows Branagh to paint on a huge canvas in Asgard and keep the action light and silly down on Earth.  But the other thing that Thor proves is that studios need to stop with 3D post-conversions.  They hurt the movie, rip off audiences, and it will ultimately only serve to drive audiences away from theaters.  The 3D in Thor isn’t worthy of fans, of casual moviegoers, or the gods.
Rating: B+

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