Taika Waititi Chris Hemsworth Jean Claude Van-Damme Action UPS Marvell Taika Waititi Chris Hemsworth Jean Claude Van-Damme

Chris Hemsworth ‘does’ the splits in new Thor: Love and Thunder trailer

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Taika Waititi’s movies in the Thor franchise have taken a decidedly ‘80s approach. There’s an emphasis on neon coloring, a sense of humor akin to many action comedies from the era, and the new trailer, released Thursday, is even set to the 1987 Guns ‘N Roses classic “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” There’s a different ‘80s-inspired part of the trailer that caught my attention, though: Chris Hemsworth’s pretending to do the splits.

Clearly influenced by Jean Claude Van Damme’s incredible exploits, we see Thor jumping up in the air to intercept two speeding vehicles heading towards him, holding them in place with just the power of his legs.

Here’s the thing, though: Van Damme actually did the splits in his movies, and this is pretty clearly a stitched together CG effect, a tactic Marvel productions rely on heavily.

The homage is nice, but it lacks the beauty and truth of the original. Van Damme is one of the great performers of his generation at using his body in exciting and enthralling ways, and it feels like a missed opportunity to recreate some of that magic, if the reference is what they were going for.

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