Guardians of the




Marvel Studios newest comic to movie release: (Guardians of The Galaxy), is a cut above the normal superhero fare, with some very funny and engaging characters who play off each other wonderfully, a clever script and, some fantastic music from the 70’s and 80’s. Is it just me, or are these films starting to look a lot like each other? I mean, don’t get me wrong, I have liked many of them, but at some point they truly do end up being a special effects visual feast at the end. Not much thinking going on.... just impossible to follow mindless eye candy explosions.

See The Dark Knight Trilogy for brilliant filmmaking.

Having said that, Guardians is breath of fresh air and even though there is action galore, it mostly is cohesive and easy to follow. It also helps that the characters are well defined and you are engaged once the meat of the movie starts. This is something the first three Star Wars films understood and it’s no surprise that it reminded me of them watching this film. That’s a huge compliment. The basic blah, blah... a stone hidden in an orb, which will, in the wrong hands, destroy the galaxy is typical, but this fun film rises above and takes you to some very cool places in this universe.

We learn in the introduction, that a young boy named: Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), whose mother is dying and is waiting to see her, listening to a walkman playing a (greatest mix tape 1) she has made for him. Stricken with grief after she dies, he runs out of the hospital only to be abducted by aliens and whisked away to outer space.

Some twenty or so years later on a alien planet, Peter, who refers to himself as (Star-Lord), is searching for a missing orb that is apparently very important to many throughout the galaxy. When he starts dancing and dispensing ugly little alien critters while listening to “Come and get your Love,” over the title sequence, I knew this was going to be good stuff. Well, Star-Lord is not the only one looking for the orb, and when some of the main bad guy‘s: Ronan (a seething Lee Pace who reminded me of Darth Maul), goons show up to take the orb and kill Peter, Star-Lord takes care of them and heads to Xandar to sell it.

When one of Ronan’s men returns to his ship to report to him that Starlord has the orb, Ronan dispatches: Gamora (Zoe Saldana), to go after Peter. Her mostly robot sister: Nebula (Karen Gillan), is pissed. Ronan, as it turns out, has made a deal with their father: Thanos (Josh Brolin), to bring him the orb, in exchange for destroying Xandar, a rather pleasant planet. Still awake?

When the pawnshop owner on Xandar refuses to pay him for the orb because Ronan is after it, Peter is attacked by Gamora outside, just as Rocket Racoon (Bradley Cooper) and Groot, ( an apparent walking tree voiced by Vin Diesel) are about to also go after Peter because of the bounty on his head. A rather entertaining and funny three way battle ensues, and all four end up on the prison space station: The Kyln, where they meet up with the giant: Drax ( Dave Bautista), who wife and daughter were killed by Ronan. Drax wants his revenge on Gamora until Peter convinces him that she is really not with Ronan.

This sets up a very cool escape of the five misfits from the prison, complete with Peter getting back his beloved walkman. Once off, they head to Knowhere, which is apparently a giant head of an alien, being mined for it’s fluids to meet with: The Collector (Benicio Del Toro), to learn of the true value of this orb thing and get payment for all. Eventually, Ronan and his crew show up and steal the orb back. Will our heroes prevail and stop Ronan and save millions from death on Xandar? Yes…but the fun is getting there, and this film delivers on all counts.

The director: James Gunn has really constructed a rather beautiful surreal world with his special effect’s magicians to create some  striking scenes that had my stomach doing a turn here and there in the IMAX format. They were creative and different, as they really brought you into this world at times. The fight scenes and action were also top notch, although, my overload issue at the end was kicking in a bit. This is overall a well done film done with some obvious love and commitment to detail and quality of product. I was impressed and had fun for most of the ride.

The cast is really where this film catches fire, as there is good comic chemistry and banter between them all. It looks like they were having fun, and you feel it. There is a vibe that is running throughout Guardians that will have you smiling. Pratt is the right mix of goofy and cool, knows how to say a line, and doesn’t look like a posing stiff for a poster like so many others playing a role do. Saldana is good just walking across a room; a wonderful actress. The real standouts for me are Bautista as Drax, and Cooper’s very good voice as Rocket. Whenever things start to sputter a bit, either one of these two bring it back up with humor, or another retro song starts playing and the fun begins again. Groot, by the way, is a hoot.

Set your next course for the theater if you haven’t already, (preferably in IMAX 3D), and see this true summer Blockbuster!


watch the trailer: