Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

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Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Chris Pratt in “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.” Credit Marvel Studios/Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Chris Pratt in “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.” Credit Marvel Studios/Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Chris Pratt in “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.” Credit Marvel Studios/Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Chris Pratt in “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.” Credit Marvel Studios/Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

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NOTE: Don’t read this review if you haven’t seen the first Guardians of the Galaxy.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 attempts to be visually beautiful, action-packed, and humorous.  And for the most part, it’s successful at living up to all three of these aspects. The film is exciting and utilizes slapstick comedy to keep it light-hearted (even though the comedy doesn’t spark laughter with every single joke).

The Guardians are a band of misfits that includes Gamora (Zoe Saldana): an alien and female assassin, Star-Lord/Peter Quill (Chris Pratt): a scavenger from Earth, Rocket (Voiced by Bradley Cooper): a gun-wielding raccoon who is always quick with a smart remark, Drax (Dave Bautista): a brute warrior who is very literal, and finally Baby Groot (Voiced by Vin Diesel): an adorable, innocent baby human-like tree creature who is friends with Rocket Raccoon.

There are so many more memorable characters in this film, that it’s a little difficult to keep track of all of them as the movie goes on. There are weird alien creatures, human-like beings, and other strange things that can’t really be classified. It’s amazing that the screenwriters of this film were able to concoct such unique characters.

The diversity of characters really sets the movie apart from other superhero movies. In my opinion, out of all the Marvel films, this one is the most diverse character-wise. In fact, it reminds me of a Star Wars-type-film not only because it’s set in space, but because most of the characters are unique in appearance and abilities. It’s crazy that the crew was able to make characters look so different by the power of imagination.

Unfortunately, I didn’t find myself laughing out loud to the quips and quirks of the film. That could be because I find that most of the humor in superhero movies always seems a little cliche. But the occasional arguments between Rocket and Star-Lord are very entertaining. I definitely thougdht the funny made the film more interest, but there wasn’t really anything that made me laugh aloud.

The movie looks great visually. With a budget of $200 million and a movie set in space and on imaginary planets, chroma key (green screens and/or blue screens) are used for the majority of the film. Some characters, such as Rocket (he looks like an actual raccoon–which is crazy) and Baby Groot are both CGI characters made entirely by special effects animation.

The action in this movie is what you would normally suspect from any superhero movie. Although there is lots of gun shooting in Guardians, it is not overly violent. It retains a PG-13 rating while serving up a heap of entertaining action. You can also expect to see some  physical fights in addition to fights between space ships.

There are also a couple of memorable villains in this movie as well. As someone who has seen quite a few Marvel movies, I’ve been previously exposed to poorly-executed villains. It seems as if, this time, Marvel has got it right because I like these villains a lot more than other Marvel universe bad guys. Most of them are well-developed by the plot. And I didn’t expect the main villain to be who he was.

Set with old hit songs from the 70s and 80s, this movie is just like the previous Guardians of the Galaxy from a soundtrack perspective. Personally, I prefer the soundtrack from the first one, as it has more recognizable–and timeless– songs. While the first movie used music to help narrate the lead character’s story arc, this movie’s soundtrack is more in the background. In fact, I came out of the theatre not remembering any of the songs that were played during it. The songs may have been okay (and fitting to the scene),but they were not worth searching on Spotify or ITunes.

I do have a couple of major issues with this motion picture. The biggest is that it follows a similar structure as every other single Marvel movie. I don’t want to give it away, but I felt like I had seen many different parts of this movie before. In addition, the film drags on a little. After all, it is two hours and eighteen minutes– a fairly long movie.

All said, I think that Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 is even better than the first installment. The first seemed rife with more cheesy moments and cringe-worthy parts. Contrarily, this one provided more developed characters and a stronger all-around plot. I enjoyed this movie quite a bit. It was a lot of fun and quite innocent. The producers didn’t sacrifice the story just to please the audience with amusing scenarios and hyper action.

8.3/10