Guardians of the Galaxy

So we’ve had Iron Man, Thor and co in their solo films and together in the mighty Avengers movie, now Marvel brings out the newcomers. But as one of their lesser-known properties can Marvel work their magic on this band of heroes.

Abducted from Earth as boy Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), otherwise known as Star-Lord was brought up among thieves. As an adult he finds himself in trouble when he steals a sphere shaped artifact with unknown powers, which everyone seems to want. He soon crosses the path of an array of aliens including Gamora (Zoe Saldana) a remorseful assassin, Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista) whose looking for revenge, Groot (Vin Diesel) a tree-like humanoid who can only say “I am Groot”, and Rocket (Bradley Cooper) a genetically engineered talking raccoon. These strangers soon have to work together when an enemy bigger then themselves start looking for the artifact, hoping to use it to cause as much death and destruction as possible.

The basic plot may not be original-a ragtag bunch of misfits must overcome their differences to work together against a common enemy. It could basically be the Avengers-in space! But what marks out Guardians of the Galaxy is the sense of pure fun and weirdness that ensures that this superhero movie is anything but a bog standard adventure.

James Gunn was considered quite the risk as a director having directed mostly indie films such as the body-alien horror Slither. But just like Joss Whedon before him Marvel have proven that the risk has payed off. Gunn clearly enjoys the sense of anarchy and wackiness that is embodied in this film. When your main characters include a talking raccoon you must have a director that has the balls to run with the weirdness and make it into something that is funny, exciting and at times quite touching without diluting all the oddness that comes with it.

It helps that our guardians are all equally as engaging as each other. There is no weak link here and everyone has a chance to shine. Chris Pratt has had quite the year being the lead in the mega hit The Lego Movie (another film that was a lot better than everyone expected it to be), and as Peter he’s the everyman that the audience can identify with. He’s not a squeaky clean goodie-goodie and is all the better for it. Peter is funny, likeable and probably gone a bit mad having listen to the same music (Awesome Mixtape 1) for the past 26 years. Saldana gets a lot of excellent fight scenes as the remorseful Gamora and has good chemistry with Pratt. Burista is surprisingly funny and has a sad back story that drives his anger. Vin Diesel as Groot is sweet and conveys a lot for someone whose character has a limited vocabulary. Rocket will probably be a lot of people’s favourite character and Cooper manages to make this talking raccoon as twisted and hilarious as you imagine he would be but also more than just a one joke character that could have been very annoying.

As for the villains we get Lee Pace as the main baddie, the psychotic Ronan The Accuser, and former Doctor Who assistant Karen Gillian as Nebula his right hand woman. Between them they don’t make things easy for the Guardians and get lots of good fight scenes and plenty of boo-hiss moments to get you rooting for their comeuppance. Also one of my favourite bits of the movie is Ronan’s reaction to Peter’s interesting attempts at distraction. How Pace did not crack up during filming I don’t know.

It’s a movie which on paper probably looks mad, and it is but that doesn’t make Guardians any less enjoyable. In fact it’s to be commended for being a bit different to its other Marvel siblings. Plus any film that mentions the awesomeness of Footloose and Kevin Bacon has my vote.

Rating 4/5 – give the crazy lesser known heroes a try and I guarantee you’ll be hooked, and if nothing else it’s the best movie featuring a talking raccoon this year!

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18 Comments

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18 responses to “Guardians of the Galaxy

  1. Glad you enjoyed it! I must be the only person in the world that hasn’t seen it yet!

  2. Can’t say I had many problems with this. Instead, just plenty of fun. Good review.

  3. I loved this movie, easily the best of the run behind the Avengers 🙂

    • It managed to give enough time to all it’s main protagonists which I was impressed with, and it was funny! Be good if somehow the Guardians could cameo in Avengers 2.

  4. Releasing here this coming friday. Will definitely go see it while only few weeks ago, I was sure of skipping it. The positive reception has greatly surprised me. Wonderful review, Lauren.

    It’s kind of funny that whatever Marvel is touching these days is becoming a huge success for them while DC is too desperate for even a hit!

    • Thank you. I hope you do enjoy it when you see it. It all sounds a bit mad on paper but I quite enjoy mad! I think the fact that James Gunn was not afraid of all the weird bits-like a talking raccoon-and just went and approached it with lots of humour and heart helped.

      Definately prefer Marvel’s output in general to DC although there has been some I enjoyed. Not too sure about the Batman/Superman film but I’ll watch it anyway. Maybe it will surprise us all.

      • The only good thing to come from DC in the 21st century has been Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy & even in that the last chapter was a huge disappointment for me.

        Not positive about the upcoming Batman vs Superman feature but I loved the teaser (that fucking rhymed :D). The problem with DC is that ever since the enormous success of Marvel’s Avengers… they’ve been way too desperate!

      • I wish Nolan was doing the Batman/Superman film. That would have been great. I did like the last Superman movie but got bored during the last half hour which dragged. I’m also concerned that they are putting way too many superheroes into this movie when they haven’t been established yet.

      • News just came in… Warner Bros. shifts Batman vs Superman to March, 2016 to avoid 2015 summer clash with Marvel’s Captain America 3 😀

        And agree with the stuffing of too many superheroes… mostly has to do with DC wanting to do a Justice League film ASAP …At the moment, it feels like this will backfire!

      • Not surprised that they don’t want to be up against Marvel! I wouldn’t want to be up against them.

  5. I’m looking forward to the blooper reel and out-takes for GotG. I’d imagine there’s lots of hilarious Chris Pratt ad libs and improv that didn’t make the final cut. Good review!

  6. Hi Lauren! Great Post!
    Fun, enjoyable movie, but would have liked to see more development of Gamora’s character, as well as Ronan, The Collector, etc.
    For me, Rocket stole th show – u are welcome to pop along & view this:
    http://bradscribe.wordpress.com/2014/08/05/life-and-crimes-of-rocket-raccoon/
    Yes, Long Live Kevin Bacon!
    Cheers!

    • Thanks! I’m glad you liked my review. My favourite character was probably Groot and StarLord but Rocket was good too. And I’m bound to like a film that references Kevin Bacon!

  7. Sorry for the late comment. I forgot to do the review and I have bookmark folder with all the reviews in.

    Anyway great review. I Loved the film. Great music and very funny 😀

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