First appearing in Marvel Super-Heroes #18 in 1969 the original Guardians of the Galaxy seemed to be Marvel Comics’ answer to DC Comics’ Legion of Super-Heroes, in that both were about a superhero team operating about one thousand years in the future. GOTG was more of a rebel faction fighting against an alien empire rather than a team of super-teens fighting future crime. This incarnation of the team lasted for some time but was never really popular outside its niche audience and never received an abundance of attention outside the hardcore comic book fanbase (which is why you’ve probably never heard of Charlie-27; I sure as hell hadn't).
|Cult worthy title or Silver Age silliness?|
While the book has been off and on the radar since it's initial launch someone over at Marvel Studios thought it’d be an a awesome idea to make a film version based on the cult title that features characters that no one in the general public had ever heard of. And as the film has made millions and millions of dollars it’s hard to say that wasn’t a brilliant move. This film was directed by James Gunn who also directed the cult films Slither and Super, which makes him an interesting choice to helm this flick. Many people are saying this movie was very good but there are also people who are saying it’s highly overrated. Seeing as I can think of at least one other film that was highly overrated by the internet in recent memory (coughcoughfrozencouch) I think it’s best I examine it myself.
|They're like the Avengers...IN SPAAAACE!!|
[WARNING: This review contains some spoilers. Nothing too bad, and really nothing that hasn't been floating around already, but they are still there and unmarked. Read at your own risk.]
|Pretty much everything Groot does is weird and freaky|
If I were to summarize my feelings about this film in one sentence I would be “Guardians of the Galaxy is the most fun I’ve had in a summer blockbuster in a long time”. There are so many soulless, heartless films that Hollywood throws at us during the summer that it’s easy to forget that good movies can come out this time of year as well. There was great action, it looked good in the visual department, a lot of funny moments that had me laughing out loud in the theater (this flick is an action-comedy), and distracted me from its flaws with its positives. Avengers was probably the most successful movie I’ve reviewed in that specific regard which is appropriate since this is easily Marvel’s best film since Avengers.
|Space Operas should be fun, or else what's the point?|
I wish there was another female Guardian in this film as I think that would have really helped the balance of the cast. I’m not sure who I would have put in as Phyla-Vell has a pretty complex backstory and most of the other cosmic women associated with the team are human which would have interfered with Star-Lord’s arc (though they could just change that aspect like they did with Drax). Here’s hoping that gets fixed in the sequel.
|Ronan the Accuser may be the worst dressed villain yet|
I thought the incorporation of Star-Lord’s tape as the soundtrack of the film was a neat idea, even if I’m not fond of every song.
The plot is good though perhaps not the deepest one to grace a movie. It’s certainly nothing I haven’t seen before in a space opera but it was executed well. It almost reminded of Farscape if Farscape was a big budget film. The script is usually really good but every once in a while it flubs up and someone says something really dumb, usually Star-Lord. In those cases I try to remember that Quill is essentially a man-child who never properly grew up and thus will say unfunny, dumbass things regularly.
For a movie that manages not to be too heavily connected to the rest of Marvel’s film it sure put a lot of effort into hyping up Thanos in this film and it felt pretty insincere. Seeing as Thanos plays no direct role in the plot his appearance feels more like fanservice than anything else; like it’s a teaser for different movie that will come out one day (Avengers 3?). For example the scene where Ronan and Thanos meets face to face feels very superfluous as we don't learn anything new about either character. It just shows how “awesome” Thanos looks and that feels like a waste of time. Seeing as his role in this film is nearly identical to the Emperor in The Empire Strikes Back (who only appears in one scene via a communication device) I feel we could have dialed back on the guy a bit and it would have been the same movie. Hell, technically if he wasn’t even mentioned at all the film would only be slightly different.
|Which one of these guys is Keyser Soze?|
(I'm leaning towards the tree)
Guardians of the Galaxy gets 5 out of 5 Adorable Pandas.
-Great cast of characters
-Good action, good special effects
-Hilarious in all the right places
-Just 100% pure fun
-Gamora could stand to be a stronger character
-Some of the stuff with Thanos felt superfluous