The next Thor is the meat in a sequel sandwich, with Iron Man 3 arriving in mere days and Captain America: The Winter Soldier is scheduled for April 4, 2014. So far, Marvel has had plenty of luck rolling out its cross-pollinating franchises in summer, the unofficial superhero movie season, but Thor: The Dark World hits theaters on November 8th. So perhaps hardcore Thor fans will have something to be very thankful for this Thanksgiving.
Based on this trailer, that seems likely. The sense here is that Thor: The Dark World could be a huge leap from its predecessor, which wasn't too shabby itself. The scale is bigger, the stakes higher, the emotions more wrenching. The Dark Elves, led by Malekith the Accursed (Christopher Eccleston), are attacking against Earth, while Thor (Chris Hemsworth) returns to whisk his lady love Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) off to Asgard. The trailer gives a sense that their star-crossed relationship is the source of some tension, particularly from Sif (Jaimie Alexander). When Malekith makes his move and the going gets tough, Thor must turn to an unlikely ally.
It's packed with cool stuff, and the style of Alan Taylor feels more textured, lived-in, and epic than that of the first film. Freed from his duties as a fish out of water, Hemsworth's Thor strikes heroic poses like a more mythic figure than we've yet seen from him. And that's good, because he's, you know, Thor.
You have to love that over a few minutes peppered with big action visuals, fantastical worlds, Natalie Portman, godly gravitas, and magic hammer-throwing, the crowd-pleasing "oh shit!" moment is a simple reveal of a skinny British gentleman in a white room.
Seriously, though, the prospect of Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston playing off each other again after Hiddleston proved so effective a foil in The Avengers is genuinely exciting. Hiddleston clearly relishes every word he says as Loki, and it'll definitely be a treat to see him back Loki's rock star hair.
Thor had a very difficult task, establishing a believably universe that could fit together with the reality introduced in Iron Man. With the world-building out of the way, Thor: The Dark World might just strike superhero gold, telling a more ambitious story with more emotional heft.