Thursday, July 31, 2014

Movie Review: Guardians of the Galaxy


What’s it about?

 They don't really look like this in the movie..

“After stealing a mysterious orb in the far reaches of outer space, Peter Quill, a half human/half alien is now the main target of a manhunt led by the villain known as Ronan the Accuser. To help fight Ronan and his team and save the galaxy from his power, Quill creates a team known as the 'Guardians of the Galaxy' to save the world.”

What does this lowly terran think of this space romp? 

The Review

First off here’s what i know about Guardians of the Galaxy. The Guardians first appeared in the Marvel Universe in 1969 and they were a completely different team and in fact existed in an alternate timeline

The current Guardians, the Guardians you’ll see in the movie first appeared in comics in 2008. And the ragtag team that you’ll see in the movie actually appeared as individual characters throughout the Marvel Universe. In terms of comic book characters these guys probably are the real ragtag misfits when you consider that they haven’t been around as long as other comic book characters and in fact didn’t really standout all that much on their own. Except maybe for Gamora who has Thanos as her father. Thanos is a pretty big and sort of important character in the Marvel Universe as he appears in several different comic series like the X-Men and the Avengers.

Now for the movie which Nuffnang was so kind enough to give us two preview passes to. Which by the way considering they were only giving away 18 passes we were very lucky to get a pair.


This was a very, very fun movie to watch!

When I first heard of the movie it didn’t really impress. Just another ho-hum comic book adaptation movie. Something the studios and Marvel was trying to cash in on. But then you start hearing about how this movie is supposed to tie-in to the other Marvel movies namely with the Avengers. There are some references of course but only if you stayed for the clips at the end of the credits in previous Marvel movies. If you’re a Marvel fan you probably know who i’m talking about but i won’t spoil it for you. I can say though he doesn’t have much screen time.

And then they started rolling out teaser trailers and then the full trailers. And from those you get a better feel for the movie that’s about to come. You get a sense that it might just be fun. That this movie won’t take itself too seriously. 

And boy was i right.

 This is still rendering but this is what you'll see in the movie..

This movie does not take itself seriously at all. The first scenes you get the usual thing with superhero movies, which is the death of someone near and dear. But then the young would be hero runs out in grief and is kidnapped by aliens.

The next scene he’s all grown up, has a bad ass outfit and cool head gear and he whips up the coolest looking augmented-reality-3D-tracker-thingy that looks like a flashlight to locate the item that he’s looking for. This all takes place in a serious tone of course. But just as soon as he opens the door to get into a chamber where he believes his search is supposed to continue things change. He puts on his headphones, presses play on his old Sony Walkman and starts to dance his way to his target. And this is what sets the tone for the rest of the movie.

This movie really doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s just pure fun. Not like other Marvel movies where it’s serious plots and drama punctuated by ass kicking and wanton destruction of everything in sight and sprinkled occasionally with a little humour. Guardians of the Galaxy is more about awkward references to 80’s pop culture, irreverent humour, punchy dialogue and characters that generally make you laugh because they don’t want to be near each other and don’t really understand each other.

The movie flows pretty well but those seem a little draggy in places but it’s not too bad. You don’t get to really bond with the characters as there’s just too much going on for much backstory to happen for each of them which is a shame since if you do a bit of reading on them they’re all equally interesting. 

The visuals are pretty cool but there’s something about them. They remind me of older sci-fi films. There’s heavy use of sets in this movie and i think it’s a welcomed change from the CGI created environment or if they did do it with CGI they’ve taken efforts to not make it so slick. It fits well in a way with the music soundtrack and of course with the Star-Lords character which has him listening to a mixtape of music from the 80’s and of course all the 80’s pop culture toys and trinkets he has. And the look extends to the outfits and the alien character design and make-up. It has a campy 80’s era sci-fi feel in my opinion. It certainly doesn’t look as polished as what you saw in other Marvel movies or even say in Star Trek or even the Star Wars pre-quels. 

The space battles or aerial battles are pretty much what you’d expect from a Marvel movie so there’s nothing much to say there. I do have to say i like the design of the ship that the Star Lord flies. That looks cool.
What sort of disappoints but not surprisingly is Drax. I know i said that you don’t really get to immerse yourself in each character as there just isn’t enough time to do it but Drax was just not all that it could be. Of course you don’t expect a brilliant performance from a wrestler but somehow in this one i was sort of meh with Dave Bautista. He didn’t act very well and he didn’t really look all that impressive or imposing as Drax.

Gamora also was neither here nor there. Step daughter to Thanos who has been trained to be a living weapon there are times when that just doesn’t happen. Sort of weird to see Gamora looking scared when she’s being handled by 2 guys in the prison and then a split second later she snatches the knives away from the two and kills them. So what is she? A cold blooded professional killer or a damsel in distress? And her fight scenes don’t really show off how she’s this infamous cold blooded killer famous throughout the galaxy.

The other 3 are just fine. Peter Quill, Rocket and Groot they pretty much steal the scene for me. They’re fun, they’re cool and they kick ass in their own unique way. 

Overall this movie is pure unadulterad fun. Sitting in that TGV movie hall listening to everyone laughing means that i wasn’t the only one enjoying it. So what’s the final verdict? The final rating? Well i would say this gets a pretty solid 4 out of 5. And i’m not the only one, early reviews for this movie on IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes are also pretty high. Which is actually quite rare for a comic book movie.

So go out there and watch it if you can. And if you can afford it i suggest watching it on IMAX3D, you won’t regret it. Cause we will be when we watch it again this weekend :)




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