Thor may be the god of thunder, but Thor: Love and Thunder is about to make it rain. Disney and Marvel Studios' fourth Thor solo movie, reuniting Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) as the new Mighty Thor, is tracking to electrify the global box office with upwards of $300 million. According to numbers reported Tuesday by Deadline, the next installment in Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe could thunder to a $140m-$160m start in the United States and Canada and $150m internationally for the $300 million worldwide opening. In the U.S., Thor: Love and Thunder rolls out Thursday, July 7, in an estimated 4,300 locations.
On the heels of the $1 billion-hot streak of Tom Cruise's Top Gun: Maverick and the rise of Universal and Illumination's animated Minions: The Rise of Gru — which broke box office records over the four-day Fourth of July holiday — Thor 4 will enter the box office rumble to win the weekend. Director Taika Waititi's return to the MCU comes five years after the New Zealand filmmaker reinvented and reinvigorated the Asgardian Avenger in Thor: Ragnarok, which opened to $122.7m domestically before going on to gross a worldwide total of $854m after releasing in November 2017.
The first Thor: Love and Thunder reactions out of its June 23 Hollywood premiere called Waititi's Ragnarok follow-up hilarious and heartfelt, but there's been less love from critics on Rotten Tomatoes. So far, Love and Thunder is "fresh" with a 71% approval from critics on Rotten Tomatoes following the lift of Disney's review embargo on July 5. That's lower than 2011's Thor (certified fresh at 77%) and Thor: Ragnarok (certified fresh at 93%), but better than 2013's Thor: The Dark World ("fresh" at 66%).
Reads the critics' consensus, "In some ways, Thor: Love and Thunder feels like Ragnarok redux — but overall, it offers enough fast-paced fun to make this a worthy addition to the MCU."
Writes Jenna Anderson in ComicBook's spoiler-free Thor: Love and Thunder review, the Thor-quel is an "electrifying and erratic encore" to Ragnarok is "unabashedly big-hearted and gleefully outrageous — even if it occasionally gets crushed by the execution of its own ambitions."
Thor: Love and Thunder finds Thor on a journey unlike anything he's ever faced — a search for self-discovery. But his retirement is interrupted by a galactic killer known as Gorr the God Butcher (Christian Bale), who seeks the extinction of the gods. To combat the threat, Thor enlists the help of King Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Korg (Waititi), and ex-girlfriend Jane Foster, who — to Thor's surprise — inexplicably wields his magical hammer, Mjolnir, as the Mighty Thor. Where will this quest take them? On a trek to Olympus where Zeus (Russell Crowe) reigns supreme, for starters. Together, they embark upon a harrowing cosmic adventure to uncover the mystery of the God Butcher's vengeance and stop him before it's too late.
Starring Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Christian Bale, Tessa Thompson, Taika Waititi, Russell Crowe as Zeus, Jaimie Alexander as Sif, and Chris Pratt, Karen Gillan, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Sean Gunn, Vin Diesel, and Bradley Cooper as the Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel Studios' Thor: Love and Thunder opens July 8 in theaters.