An effortlessly funny and character-driven space adventure
James Gunn’s ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ is a solid new entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It overcomes blockbuster tropes by infusing some nerdy goofiness into the mix. And with a compelling cast and a breed of humor rarely associated with superhero films, it’s a refreshing and welcome detour from the Thor, Cap and Iron Man sequels we had to get by on our way to the next Avengers.
Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” expands the Marvel Cinematic Universe into the cosmos, where brash adventurer Peter Quill finds himself the object of an unrelenting bounty hunt after stealing a mysterious orb coveted by Ronan, a powerful villain with ambitions that threaten the entire universe. To evade the ever-persistent Ronan, Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a quartet of disparate misfits-Rocket, a gun-toting raccoon, Groot, a tree-like humanoid, the deadly and enigmatic Gamora and the revenge-driven Drax the Destroyer. But when Quill discovers the true power of the orb and the menace it poses to the cosmos, he must do his best to rally his ragtag rivals for a last, desperate stand-with the galaxy’s fate in the balance. (C) Walt Disney
The characters are remarkably fleshed-out, each with their own charms. Chris Pratt and Zoe Saldana are attractive specimens, exhibiting charisma like it was their superpower. Surprisingly, WWE superstar David Baustista (Batista) had the best comedic moments, while Groot and Rocket are likely candidates for bromance of the year. On a side note, the CGI work on those two anthropomorphic creatures is insane, and I can say the same for the overall visual effects of the film.
On the downside, the plot is just as ridiculous as that of Thor: The Dark World, though I’d say the execution is more polished here and there are more things to adore and enjoy. However, its main weakness is that it’s kept short, probably because they want to reserve more material for the forthcoming projects. Marvel’s inability to conceal the bigger picture in any of their films leaves you craving for more yet at the same time makes you wonder if we’ll ever get a complete, standalone movie from them (to be fair, ‘Guardians’ doesn’t end with an obvious cliff-hanger, but it still gives off a vibe of a franchise starter). Most people will enjoy their assembly line of movies, but it will be an endless cycle of excitement and disappointment until something totally unexpected and amazing comes along. ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ is not quite that, but at least it adds some variety to our future.