Chris Hemsworth’s biceps?
This weekend, the Avengers’ resident thunder god returns in the fourth Marvel “Thor” film, reuniting Hemsworth with Natalie Portman against a villainous Christian Bale. Karl Urban (“The Boys”) voices a monster-hunting seafarer in a new animated adventure on Netflix, and the streaming service adds to its growing list of young-adult romances with a teen-oriented film starring former “Dancing With the Stars” champ Jordan Fisher.
Here’s a guide to new movies that will satisfy every cinematic taste, plus some noteworthy theatrical films making their streaming and on-demand debuts:
‘Superhero summer camp’:How ‘Thor’ stars Natalie Portman, Tessa Thompson bulked up for their roles
Director Taika Waititi’s latest “Thor” outing is the best solo effort yet for Hemsworth’s blond hero. Thor’s path in the Marvel movies has led him to a bit of an identity crisis, and on top of that he runs into his ex Jane (Portman), now a powerful goddess herself wielding Thor’s old magic hammer. The cosmic adventure marries metal tunes and retro influences with rom-com high jinks, feel-good vibes, a few profound themes and a standout turn from Bale as a deity-killing menace.
Where to watch: In theaters
‘Thor: Love and Thunder’ review:Magic, music and muscle fuel Marvel’s heartfelt superhero jam
The adaptation of Jennifer E. Smith’s young-adult novel casts Fisher and Talia Ryder as a high school couple who spend their senior year together with one caveat: They make a pact to break up before college. The pair intend on revisiting a bunch of their “firsts” on a final date that naturally doesn’t go as planned – though it’s not the only failure here. Fisher and Ryder lack spark in a coming-of-age story more interested in throwing obstacles at its main characters than it is in caring about them.
Where to watch: Netflix
“Moana” fans will get a kick out of this comedic animated adventure with colorful creatures and a big heart. Jacob (Urban) is a captain-to-be on a legendary ship hunting an infamous gigantic crimson sea monster but when he meets a spunky orphan girl (Zaris-Angel Hator) – and they have a run-in with the beast – the sailor gains a new perspective. It’s a bold and often funny film that offers an important lesson about mankind and nature.
Where to watch:Netflix
Seth McTigue writes, directs and stars as the leader of a shady group hired to kidnap a young CEO (Sam Song Li) as a birthday prank by the guy’s black-sheep older brother (Roy Huang), a plan that goes sideways when the criminals get greedy. There’s an interesting narrative thread about family legacy and siblings that ends up taking a backseat to plot swerves in this decent but flawed thriller.
There are echoes of “Get Out” and “Ready or Not” in this darkly comic horror film, which features “Hamilton” alum J. Quinton Johnson as a singing mechanic who goes with his rock-star girlfriend (Emma Fitzpatrick) when she’s chosen to take part in a posh self-help retreat for the rich and famous. However, there are some seriously dark secrets afoot alongside the therapy in a blood-spattered chiller that smartly tackles fame and success.