For the most part, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has delivered solid, entertaining films…with the exception being the Thor franchise. While the character always had potential, neither Kenneth Branagh nor Alan Taylor could do justice to the God of Thunder. So thank Odin for Taika Waititi, whose Ragnarok is an apocalyptic good time featuring a giant wolf, gladiator battles, and Jeff Goldblum at his Goldblum-y best.
The plot follows Thor (Chris Hemsworth, rippling with muscles and killing it with comedy) as he's trying to stop Hela (Cate Blanchett), the goddess of death, from taking over Asgard. Unfortunately, his superhero plans don't pan out, and after his hammer is crushed into tiny pieces, he finds himself imprisoned on a planet where he's forced to do battle with the Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo). Thanks to Taika Waititi's genius for improv, the scenes between Hemsworth and Ruffalo are comedy gold; plus, Tessa Thompson is an amazingly badass Valkyrie, and Tom Hiddleston gets to ham things up as a slightly goofier Loki, god of mischief.
Accompanied by a memorable score from Mark Mothersbaugh (a true first in the MCU), Thor: Ragnarok is possibly the funniest movie in the entire Marvel franchise and one with a surprising amount of heart. Unlike the previous two films, Ragnarok actually has something to say about the destructive influence of colonialism and how great nations often hide their bloody pasts. And most importantly, Thor is no longer a Shakespearean straight man. Instead, he's a good-natured goof who's forced to truly reckon with his own godhood, all while battling skeletons, aliens, and fiery demons. Because that's what heroes do.