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Hammer Time 

Thor kicks off a summer of butt-kicking superheroes

It’s going to be a busy summer for superheroes, with Captain America, the X-Men, and Green Lantern all heading to the big screen. First up is Thor, the hammer-wielding god of thunder, who stumbles in his movie debut.

Director Kenneth Branagh attempts to bring his usual and impeccable sense of Shakespearean heft to the Marvel Comics realm but doesn’t quite succeed. Thor (Chris Hemsworth), his brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston), and Thor’s mortal pal Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) never really seem more than comic-book cutouts here.

There’s lots of exposition, as Thor is cast out of the land of gods to live on Earth, leaving very little room for any kind of real plot to develop. Hopefully next year’s Avengers will bring out Thor’s true thundering potential. --Justin Brenis

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