Movie Review: Guardians Of The Galaxy

Jean-Paul’s Rating: 4/5 stars

Bottom Line: A very enjoyable variation on the Superhero theme of movie.  Lots of likeable characters, some good humor, slightly touching.  The larger ship fight action scenes fall flat because they are mostly impossible to follow.

Well, Marvel has yet another winning franchise.  Who’d a thunk that a movie about a bunch of misfit heroes with pretty much zero name recognition would be both a success and as good as it actually was?  A lot of this has to do with the fine cast of second tier stars.  Chris Pratt started off a little soft and appeared to be a little uncomfortable as Peter Quill (Starlord), but he very quickly pulled it all together to create an incredibly likeable character.  The interactions between Gamora (Zoe Salander) and Drax (Dave Bautista) were entertaining.  Vin Diesel gives the acting performance of his life as Groot.  And Bradley Cooper steals scene after scene as the raccoon, Rocket.

The key to this film’s success is actual, honest to goodness character development.  Marvel seems to be really good at this, but this is really the first time they have gone full-bore introducing five new heroes and yet still cram the story full of character development for all five of them while at the same time telling a pretty decent story.  Another key factor to this movie’s success is the lightness of the story.  Yes, serious stuff is happening all around, but there’s also always time for a well placed and very well-timed joke.  Like when Rocket says he needs the prisoner’s mechanical leg to help them escape.  Classic.

The only real downside to the movie were the way too hectic battle scenes.  The close up action worked really well, but get more than a few ships speeding across the screen at the same time and you really can’t tell what’s going on.  Messy visual spectaculars are all the rage these days, unfortunately.  Of course, it doesn’t really matter what’s going on in those scenes so it’s easy to look past it.

Yep, there will be another “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie, you can all but guarantee it.  This one was too fun and appears to be as successful as it needs to be to make it happen.  It’s a great group of characters and I’m looking forward to seeing their next adventure.  In the meantime, I’m sure I’ll watch this movie again once or twice.

5 thoughts on “Movie Review: Guardians Of The Galaxy

  1. Steven Scott

    Two things.

    1) They already announced a Guardians of the Galaxy 2 coming out in 2017. They announced that before the first one even came out. (Side note: Marvel has huge brass balls).

    2) I’m developing a pet peeve for people mislabeling these movies. Just because it takes place in the same universe as ‘The Avengers’ does not make this a superhero movie. This was a Sci-Fi/Fantasy film like a Star Wars.

    Colorful aliens that get into fist fights with one another. Techno wizards who hack into computer systems, fly space ships, and macguyver up make shift weapons. Rakish rogues who wear stylish outfits, sleep with exotic women, and pull out a hold out blaster while running away from an army. A super weapon with the power to destroy whole planets.

    Not a superhero movie.

    1. Jean-Paul Post author

      Not a superhero movie? Then explain to me the difference between Star-Lord and Ironman, or Groot and Mr. Fantastic, or Drax and Hulk, or Gamora and Captain America, or Rocket and, um, well, he’s a freakin’ genetically modified raccoon which sounds pretty super to me!

      1. Steven Scott

        Are you saying Star Wars is superhero movie, because I can draw much better connections between the characters of “Guardians” than I can to those heroes.

        Star-Lord – Point of View character who gets caught up in a larger plot involving war and politics. The people he is with think of him as an idiot – but really he is an orphan, only there is something mysterious going on with his father. Star-Lord is Luke Skywalker.

        Rocket Raccoon – A scoundrel who is just looking to make a buck, even at the expense of his friends. Up until this story, he has only been out for himself and his large non-verbal partner whom only he can understand. Oh yeah, he is also the coolest character in this movie and what we will all think about when remembering this film for months to come. Rocket is Han Solo

        Gamorra is a sexy, tough-as-nails female who drives the plot by pointing the above two at the big villain. She can handle herself both in combat and in dealing with said big villian, but she would have died if not for the Point of View character convincing the scoundrel he would be very rich by helping her. Gamorra is Leia.

  2. Jim

    I think whether something gets labelled a ‘super hero movie’ vs a ‘science fiction movie’ mostly depends on the setting, not on the background of the characters. If you have characters with some kind of super-human ability, and they are set in a roughly 20th-21st century earth-like setting, then it’s labelled a super hero movie. If the same characters are set in a future time period in space with space ships, then it’s science fiction.

    For example, if a movie had been made set on earth in 2014 with a character that had mysterious powers called ‘the force’ (Luke Skywalker), and he was fighting a bad guy wearing black body armor and a cape, who could use ‘the dark side of the force’ (Darth Vader), it would have been labelled a super hero movie. Conversely, if you made a movie set in the future in outer space, with a character who was an alien from planet Krypton with super-human strength, shot laser beams out of his eyes, and could see through walls (Superman), but you put him in a space ship and had him fly around to different planets fighting aliens to save the galaxy instead of flying around on earth fighting Lex Luthor, it would have been labelled a science fiction movie, not a super hero movie.

    I think, as with a lot of things, movies do not always fit neatly into one single category.

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