Kenneth Branagh comes from a Shakespearean background in acting. He is now the unlikely director of "Thor," a big-budget superhero movie. To his credit, he successfully blends his classical training with the more mundane demands of a comic book action flick.
It doesn't hurt that he has Oscar-winning actors Anthony Hopkins and Natalie Portman in the cast. But he also has the relatively unknown Australian hunk Chris Hemsworth playing the mighty Thor. He brings a welcome boyish charm and naïve innocence to his role as the Norse God of Thunder.
The palace intrigues and character flaws of the gods reflect the Shakespeare influence. The whiz-bang special effects are right out of the Marvel comics tradition. The predictable events in the formula plot will please action hungry fans. The target audience should end up exactly where the producer's want them to be: waiting for the sequel that's sure to come.