“Guardians of the Galaxy” Review (Spoiler-Free)

Guardians_of_the_Galaxy

Yesterday I finally got around to seeing the latest Marvel film “Guardians of the Galaxy.” Like many people, I went in knowing next to nothing about the Guardians. And while it may not be my absolute favorite of the Marvel movies so far, I can safely say it was a fun, entertaining ride for its 2-hour length.

The general plot involves wanted outlaw Peter Quill aka Starlord coming across a seemingly unimportant artifact that later has major relevance to the plot and motivation of the main villain, Ronan. Ronan is a Kree who’s fed up about being peaceful with the people of the planet Xandar. After Starlord is captured and thrown into jail, he teams up with an unlikely bunch of fellow inmates to retrieve the artifact and stop Ronan’s evil plans.

The plot is about as complex as any other Marvel movie, if slightly less easy to follow with the abundance of alien-esque locations, names and beings. There were times that it was a bit cliched, and while most of the jokes made me laugh, there was the occasional one that either missed the mark or made me laugh because of how stupid/cheesy it was. Overall, though, I was invested through the movie and especially so as I got to know the characters.

I loved practically every character in this movie, even the villains themselves. Aside from Starlord, I really enjoyed Groot, a tree giant who can barely talk aside from saying “I am Groot” and had cool powers, and Rocket, a genetically altered raccoon who is tough and has a knack for building things. Both of these characters have been talked up as stealing the show, and I can agree with that as I felt they had some of the best lines and moments. However, Starlord had great bits as the only human of the group, Drax the Destroyer was actually pretty funny and also sympathetic despite his brutish appearance, and Gamora was simply an awesome assassin, easily one of the coolest female characters I’ve seen in a while.

This movie had plenty of action throughout in the form of space battles, shootouts, and hand-to-hand combat. I didn’t feel bored once and the film moved at a relatively brisk pace. Better yet, this film spends the majority of its runtime showing off different planets, which was a cool way to open up the universe. The only gripe I had with this was the constant need to show each location via text each time a new one was revealed. It was slightly annoying, but given the obscurity of the source material, I got that it was necessary.

As usual, there is a stinger at the very end of the film. I’ll say this much: If you don’t know much Marvel lore (either comic or older movie attempts) or you expect to see something plot relevant, don’t bother staying for the stinger. It’s literally a throwaway gag at best. Some people seemed to find it funny, whereas I just found it to be a little funny but mostly confusing reference. Both Richard and I agreed that it wasn’t worth the wait, though your mileage may very. If anything, it fits in with the more humorous tone this movie has.

Overall, “Guardians of the Galaxy” was a big, loud, kinda dumb but fun romp. I’m excited to see more of these characters and if they’ll interact with some of the other big-name Marvel heroes in future films. It’s easily one of my favorite movies of this year so far.

I give “Guardians of the Galaxy” a solid 9/10.

 

 

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