Re: Is Thor "Too Difficult" A Character To Do Well?
"Too difficult" is not the issue, but the issue is "more difficult." Because Thor has so few physical problems, and so few social problems on Asgard, it takes more work and creativity and suspension of disbelief to put Thor through the wringer. It might take 3 months to beat out a truly great Thor story, but it only takes 3 days to beat out a great Iron Man story. Thor 1 did this by taking away his powers, which was suitable thematically for an origin story. Avengers did okay, mostly sidelining him, as the comics often do, but he got to wring his hands over dealing with his brother.
Thor the Dark World was more interested in Loki than Thor. The film considered Loki more relatable to the audience, and it showed. They didn't know what to do with Thor, as a person, and as a result, he sort of middled between Earth and Asgard and so on, being bandied about by the whims of others. Truly an uncompelling figure.
Doing him right would have required a lot more location scouting for the nine worlds. It would have required more CGI and prosthetics and design for the creatures of those worlds. There's also the issue that the much better funded Lord of the Rings is a current even competing franchise in the Hobbit. And while you don't want Thor to look like a poor-man's Hobbit, tt would not have taken 300M dollars keep things to Asgard, The Dark World, a revisitation of Niffleheim and perhaps Hogun's world as a nice classical fantasy tavern-filled world, with hinting at others. You can do an adventure movie without actually doing Lord of the Rings. Once you show that Thor's powers are useless to save Jane or kill Kurse who pursues them, you've got something truly awesome. More of Thor, Warriors Three, Sif, prisoner-Loki and Jane, all back and forth interacting with each other. Those were some of the best movments in the movie... maximize those. Leave Darcy and Svelwig on Asgard for comic relief. Have Heimdall babysit them. Hilarity ensues.
And it would have required finding a new way to make Thor vulnerable. They were hinting in the right direction by having Jane travel with him, and her kinda dying or something, with him trying to protect her, but at the same time not being able to, a perfect metaphor for his relationship with Midgard... but then they deflated all that to finish things on Earth, basically removing Thor from the movie emotionally. What might have been interesting is if his major test had involved him becoming temporarily unworthy to wield the hammer. That would have cemented Malekith as a truly awesome dude to corrupt Thor in that way.
Oh well, they were more interested in Loki. Too bad being a great supporting cast member doesn't mean you can take over a movie.