At The Movies

Top 10 Chris Hemsworth Performances

To celebrate Chris Hemsworth's birthday, we rank his top performances.


AUGUST 11th, 2020

© Getty Images

The Australian star, Chris Hemsworth, is renowned for his role as the God of Thunder, and yet the Thor star has forged a pretty successful catalogue of performances outside of the Marvel Universe. From him entering the world of fairy tales in Snow White and the Huntsman, to his brilliant performance as F1 Driver James Hunt, Hemsworth has proved he has much more talent than just swinging a hammer.


10. Owen Chase – In the Heart of the Sea

© Warner Bros.


This Ron Howard epic would be the second time the actor would work with the acclaimed director, and for the movie Chris would have to embark on a physical transformation unlike any he had been through before. Losing 30 pounds for the role, the actor plays Owen Chase who along with the crew of the whaleship Essex are marooned on an island after battling a white sperm whale.

The real-life story on which the film is based on became the inspiration for Herman Melville’s iconic novel Moby Dick.

The film received mixed reviews, though Hemsworth was noted positively for his performance, impressing critics for his versatility as an actor. In the Heart of the Sea would also become the first time Chris would partner up with Spider-Man actor Tom Holland.



9. Kevin – Ghostbusters (2016)

© Sony Pictures


Before its release fans savaged the rebooted, all-female Ghostbusters. The initial trailer is the most disliked video on YouTube to this day, though upon its release in cinemas, critics praised the movie – especially Chris’ turn as lovable, yet stupid secretary Kevin.

The actor was applauded for his comedy timing and ability to improvise scenes. One of the movies funniest moments including Hemsworth joking with a pair of glasses was revealed to be completely improvised by the actor on the day.

Ghostbusters provided a new acting arena for Chris to explore, comedy, and he proved he was a natural.



8. James Hunt – Rush

© Paramount Pictures


Chris’ first outing with director Ron Howard appeared in the form of F1 Racer James Hunt. The iconic British sportsman was brought to life on screen by Hemsworth, with critics and fans praising the Australian for his authentic and believable performance.

Rush was a box office success, and although sometimes historically inaccurate, the movie was Hemsworth’s first major success away from the Marvel Universe. It proved that the actor was more than capable of successfully portraying dramatic diverse and complex characters.



7. Thor – Avengers

© Marvel


Being part of an ensemble movie, it is difficult to stand out, yet Hemsworth’s performance as Thor in the first Avenger’s movie was a highlight. The movie enabled the god-like character to develop, specifically the relationship with Tom Hiddleston’s Loki.

The movie was a guaranteed box office smash, becoming one of the biggest movies ever made and further solidified Hemsworth’s status as a Hollywood heavyweight.



6. Billy Lee – Bad T imes at the El Royale

© 20th Century Fox


In 2018, Chris would portray Billy Lee, a cult leader in the modern-day film noir, Bad Times at the El Royale. The movie would highlight Hemsworth’s ability to portray a villain, and critics remarked how his performance was a standout positive from the movie.

The film would see Chris partner with director Drew Goddard for a second time after their successful first collaboration, Cabin in the Woods.



5. George Kirk – Star Trek (2009)

© Paramount Pictures


Every Hollywood career starts somewhere, and for Chris Hemsworth playing the role of George Kirk was his first foray into blockbuster movies. Although Chris was only in the opening park of the movie, his performance garnered universal praise from the critics and was a hit with fans.

In the now scrapped sequel, Hemsworth was expected to return to the role though due to scripting complications it looks as if fans will have to wait indefinitely.



4. Curt Vaughan – Cabin in the Woods

© Lionsgate


It is perhaps the most unique movie Chris has ever been a part of. Written by Joss Whedon, Cabin in the Woods takes the typical horror-slasher movie and twists it on its head.

The movie was filmed before Chris was cast as Thor and received universal praise for its unique plotline. Although his character meets a brutal end in the movie, his performance was praised by critics and showcased how talented of an actor Chris is.



3. Thor – Thor

© Marvel


It is the role which catapulted the Australian actor as a Hollywood heavyweight and garnered Chris universal acclaim. Thor would be the first time the god of Thunder would be successfully visualised on-screen and Hemsworth would be perfectly suited for the part, even though he almost wasn’t cast.

Chris would have to compete with his younger brother Liam for the part, and eventually won the coveted role.

Hemsworth would put on 20 pounds of muscle to transform into the superhero and have his hair, eyebrows and beard bleached. Thor would the first of seven times Chris would play the role which had made him a movie star.



2. Tyler Rake – Extraction

© Netflix


Chris’ most recent movie Extraction has become Netflix’s biggest hit with nearly 100 million views online. Written by the Russo Brothers, Hemsworth proved his action star prowess by showcasing some of the most high-octane and brutal movie stunts seen on film (and also how hardcore his stunt double Bobby Holland Hanton is too).

The movie was received well by fans, with a sequel already in the pipeline and Hemsworth is expected to return as the lead. Chris was applauded for his performance as Tyler Rake and showcased his evolution as an actor.

You can read our review of Extraction here.



1. Thor – Thor: Ragnarok

© Marvel


After the lacklustre Thor: The Dark World the role of Thor had grown stale for Hemsworth as well as Marvel. It would lead to the popular movie studio hiring Taika Waititi to take the helm of the third instalment, Thor: Ragnarok.

With a new tone and style, Ragnarok would redefine the beloved God of Thunder and expertly showcase Chris’ comedy talents. Thor would have a new look and haircut, and the movie would become one of Marvel’s biggest successes, both at the box office and with critics.

Fans also adored the new Thor and Waititi would be brought back to direct the next instalment – Love and Thunder.

Such was the adoration for the movie that many have claimed that Chris’ performance is one of the best to come out of the Marvel Universe.

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