Thor: Ragnarok

New Zealand actor-filmmaker Taika Waititi (What We Do in the Shadows, Hunt for the Wilderpeople) brings his anarchic sensibility and cheeky humor to this third entry in the Marvel Studios franchise, proving himself just as skilled at action-adventure as at quirky indie comedy. Thor (Chris Hemsworth), the Norse god of thunder, spars again with his trickster stepbrother (Tom Hiddleston), whose usurpation of their father’s throne has created a power vacuum in the realm of Asgard, allowing the rise of their evil sibling (Cate Blanchett, vamping in a catsuit and antlers). The story unfolds largely on a planet ruled by a fey gadfly (Jeff Goldblum), which makes this colorful mashup of Scandinavian myth, interplanetary sci-fi, Old Testament references, and crossover comic book characters (Hulk, Doctor Strange) a goofy lark. With Anthony Hopkins, Mark Ruffalo, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Tessa Thompson.