Friday, August 8, 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy (a movie review post)

Guardians of the Galaxy is the first of the Marvel movies that I'm coming into with, basically, no background knowledge of. Which is not to say that I don't know the general layout of what's going on, but the Guardians that I used to read back in the 90s
is not the same Guardians that exists today. And the characters that I am familiar with, like Drax, are not quite the same (since Drax is not functioning as a herald of Galactus in this Marvel Universe (because, you know, Galactus is being held captive over at Fox Studios (which is actually pretty scary when you think about it))).

That said, stemming from what Marvel has done with their previous movies, this one picks up the thread and weaves it in seamlessly. But in a completely different way. [And I just want to point out that this is the kind of movie that DC's Green Lantern should have been but failed utterly to be.]  So, yes, this is a departure from the previous super hero Marvel films, but it's not a departure in quality. Though, to be fair, there will be people that won't be able to accept characters like Rocket and Groot even though they were brilliant. [My kids loved Rocket even more than Groot, which is saying a lot.]

What the movie does:
1. Introduces the idea of the Celestials.
2. Gives us a clear view of the wider Marvel Universe
3. Applies the term "Infinity Stone" to the infinity stones for the first time.
4. Gives us a better idea of who and what Thanos is.

Guardians does a good job of sprinkling in humor without ever going over the top with it. It doesn't over balance the action or the seriousness of the situation. And it's spread evenly across the characters so that it's not just a bunch of one liners from Rocket or anything like that. Drax has some great, humorous moments even though he is nothing but serious throughout the film. It's very well done.

The acting is spectacular. Chris Pratt, whom I've been a fan of for quite a while, was amazing and the right pick for Peter Quill. Bradley Cooper was surprisingly good as the voice of Rocket. Surprising in that I couldn't even tell it was Cooper doing the voice. Neither could my wife, which is saying a lot, because she always knows the voices; it's a talent of hers. Cooper gave authenticity to completely realistic looking CGI raccoon. Karen Gillan also stood out as Nebula. It was a complete departure from her role as Amy in Doctor Who.

The short of it is that, really, I was ready to see it again as soon as we walked out of the theater. My kids would agree with that. It was a lot of fun. Most similar to Iron Man in tone because of the humor but handled in a way that kept it from becoming campy. I think I'd say it's like an awesome roller coaster ride, the kind where, as soon as you get off, you want to go back around and get back in line.


  1. We finally agree completely on a movie!
    Everything about the film was spread evenly and just enough. And big fan of Parks and Recreation, so really enjoyed Pratt.
    My wife and I are going to see it again next week. We almost never see a film twice, but it was just so much fun.

  2. I loved this film, and I can't wait to see it a second time. And probably a third, if I can find the time.

    I'm a Parks & Rec fan, too, so I'm thrilled for Chris Pratt.

  3. Maybe I'm getting too old for roller coasters. I'm always afraid my glasses will fly off or if I don't wear my glasses then I can't see the cool view and then what's the point of riding? Not that this has anything to do with this movie, but you said "roller coaster" and my concern about them was the first thing that came to my mind.

    Anyway, your review makes this film sound a little more interesting. The preview with the raccoon was bugging me and I was not especially excited about seeing this film. Maybe now, but likely not. Guess I'm not into films like this like I used to be, but I've said that before in previous comments.

    Now maybe if I still had young kids or my grandkids lived nearby I'd be more excited about seeing these types of films. Taking kids makes a difference--you get to share the magic.

    Tossing It Out

  4. I'll probably go watch that next week.

  5. Hey Andrew, I've seen the ads for this movie, and it actually looks like fun,(and by fun I mean something my sons and grandsons will probably like) but I know I won't see it. I really can't get in to any super hero movies..the whole notion of any kind of comic book super hero bores me to death. That being said, I would take a couple grandsons if they really wanted to see it.

  6. The consensus seems to be that this one's really good. I may well have to go. I didn't even realize Karen Gillan is in it. I so miss my Amy Pond...

  7. Alex: I probably won't get to go see it again, but I so would! But I'll buy it once it's out.

    M.J.: Yeah, P&R is a great show.

    Lee: Taking my kids to see a movie they enjoy certainly does add a level of enjoyment to it, and I'm willing, sometimes, to take them to movies that I know I'm not going to like (and, then, don't), and I do derive enjoyment from their enjoyment.

    Pat: Good.

    Eva: It is fun.
    And it's not really a super hero movie, not in the classic sense of "super hero movie."

    TAS: >sshh...< We still haven't seen the second half of season 7, because it hasn't been available.

  8. I think I'll go see it again this weekend at some point.

  9. Everyone keeps telling me how great this movie is. I'm not sure why it doesn't appeal to me, but maybe I should just suck it up and go see it. I think I might enjoy it.

    You're right. The idea of Fox holding Galactus captive is terrifying.

  10. Great review! I'm ready for a superhero type movie that isn't so "dark". :-)

  11. I loved Guardians. I never read comic books period growing up, so all of these movies are pretty much my introduction to the characters & stories, but Guardians was a step above all the other ones for me.

    I want to go see it again. But I don't know if it'll be in the budget. We'll see.

  12. I've heard nothing but good stuff about this movie. I don't even know who they are. I want to see it.

  13. I've heard nothing but good stuff about this movie. I don't even know who they are. I want to see it.

  14. Actually, that was ME. Sweetie does NOT want to see it.

    Any more than she wants to EVER SIGN OUT OF GOOGLE WHEN SHE IS DONE.

  15. TAS: No problem. We already know Amy's gone and the Doctor changes. It's hard not to know those things.

    Michael: I want to go see it again. :/

    Jeanne: If you think you might enjoy it, you should go see it.

    Li: The Marvel movies, on the whole, have not been dark, not in the way DC has been doing their movies, at any rate.

    Rebekah: I probably won't make it back to it in the theater, either, so I empathize.

    Briane: Go see it!
    And, well, we do know that it's you, so it's not, like, confusing or anything.

  16. Right. I'll be interested to know what you think of the new... er... further developments.

  17. TAS: I'll let you know once we've been able to see them, which I doubt will be any time soon with as slow as they're going with this.

  18. You could totally be a professional movie reviewer, Andrew!!! Great review.

    My eldest daughter is OBSESSED with Raccoons so she is FREAKING to see it, LOL… I actually (surprisingly) think it looks good. I'll probably see it. :)

  19. We're very excited for the fun to resume soon.

  20. Morgan: Raccoons are cool. I've always wanted one as a pet, or at least I have since I read My Side of the Mountain (I think that's the right book) when I was around 10. Has she read that?

    I would totally be a professional movie reviewer if they weren't so much a thing of the past. Another thing the Internet killed but, look, I get to do it where people can see it, anyway!

    TAS: My kids are, too. I wish I had time to sit down with them and re-watch all of it. It's been a long time, at this point, since the first season of the new run, and I'm pretty sure my daughter doesn't really remember it.

  21. Loved GotG :) Went in not having any background knowledge, but that didn't matter, it still all flowed :) Another Dr Who fan here! Anyhow, actually visiting via the A-Z Themes that Rock, so better go find April posts, as it sure sounds like your theme rocked! x

  22. Suzanne: I hope you enjoy the Abandoned Places!