Marvel returns with another big budget super hero adventure bringing back Chris Hemsworth in Thor: Ragnarok. The third Thor installment is a rousing, colorful, and quite frankly very bizarre affair. Director Taika Waititi brings his comedic flair to the Thor universe swapping the humdrum Shakespearean tone with Monty Python.

Taking a page out of the Guardians of the Galaxy handbook, Thor: Ragnarok plunges into a quirky universe with offbeat characters, vibrant sets, and a retro musical score. It’s a much-needed boost of adrenaline for the Thor franchise which results in a breezy, candy colored action comedy that is one of the most fun movies of the year.

The premise is a basic nuts and bolts of good guy versus bad guy. God of thunder, Thor, discovers his banished sister Hela has been set free. Hela is the god of death and is on a mission to claim her throne on Asgard. Unable to defeat her, Thor is imprisoned on a distant planet which leaves him not only weak but also hammer-less. There he is coincidentally forced to battle his Avenger teammate Hulk in a gladiator type arena. As Hela subdues Asgard, Thor rallies to return to his home and defeat his powerful sister.

Hiring Waititi to execute a more comedic side of Thor is a brash choice. It begins a little awkward but like a trick of the hand you wonder why it took so long to make Thor this entertaining.  Thor has transformed from a fish out of water mythological do-gooder into a charming yet clumsy athlete. It may feel like a minor betrayal of characteristics past Marvel entries have established but it works because Hemsworth is a surprisingly skilled comedic actor. His charismatic persona mixed with natural comedic talents is a winning combination. Hemsworth appears more relaxed and frankly happier in this third installment.

But Thor is not the only altered character. Tom Hiddleston’s mischievous Loki is back in more of an antihero role. His villainous side has been neutered but Hiddleston looks like he is having a blast. Him and Hemsworth have great chemistry as allies that result in a cool and playful relationship. Mark Ruffalo’s destructive Hulk is given the most screen time since his 2008’s Incredible Hulk. For the first time we see the Hulk tackle on dialog and banter rather than just destroying buildings. It’s a convenient coincidence that the Hulk shows up but he is given much more material to work with.

Two-time Oscar winner Cate Blanchett takes on Thor’s villainous sister Hela. Unfortunately, the script doesn’t give Blanchette much to do other than wreak havoc. She is a whirlwind of fury but it’s a pretty standard  affair. Thankfully Blanchett’s panache saves the character from being totally forgettable- other than her antler influenced outfit that looks like something straight out of Rupaul’s Drag Race.

But the biggest scene stealers come from two new characters. Teesa Thompson’s Valkarie is a hard-drinking warrior with great fighting and mechanic skills. She is a much-needed addition to Marvel’s female canon and Thompson struts into the Marvel universe as if she’s been there the entire time. And then there is Jeff Goldblum as the Grandmaster. He is one of the strangest characters emerged in peculiar delight.  You get Goldblum in all his quirks and smart-ass line delivery. This character should not work but he fits right in Ragnarok’s manufactured offbeat context. He will surely be a fan favorite.

This movie looks like a box of fruity pebbles exploded on the big screen. It’s dazzling, exciting, and flat out entertaining. It’s not for those who prefer their superheroes dark and brooding. And it doesn’t want to be nor does it care. It’s a syrupy burst of confetti that just wants you to have a good time. It mixes some killer action sequences, special effects, and humor. The final fight battle sequence is one of the best put together action sequences in any super hero movie. It fits in the Marvel catalog while managing to be an odd ball that pokes fun at everything including itself. It’s a ridiculous spectacle of a movie that induces so much joy and charm that you can’t help but cheer for it.