Guardians of the Galaxy
Guardians of the Galaxy Origins
Guardians of the Galaxy
Director: James Gunn
Writers: James Gunn, Nicole Perlman, Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning
Cast: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Djimon Hounsou, John C. Reilly, Glenn Close, Benicio Del Toro, Laura Haddock, Sean Gunn, Peter Serafinowicz, Christopher Fairbank, Wyatt Oleff, Gregg Henry, Stan Lee, Josh Brolin
Voice Cast: Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Rob Zombie
Synopsis: In the far reaches of space, an American pilot named Peter Quill finds himself the object of a manhunt after stealing an orb coveted by the villainous Ronan.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and for some language
Note: If anyone is wondering why I put a "Howard the Duck" video on a review for "Guardians of the Galaxy", then the only thing I'll tell you is.....well I do what I want on these things. Enjoy.
Howard the Duck's Silver Anniversary Special.
9 / 10
- Great visual effects
- Great job on sound editing and mixing
- The cinematography was great
- Bradley Cooper's comedic timing in this was simply brilliant.
- Chris Pratt delivers an outstanding performance
- Most of the characters are written well
- The rest of the actors gave solid performances, and seemed to have good chemistry with each other.
- Art direction for this feature was brilliant, and gives the film it's own unique visual identity.
- Jokes were funny
- Action scenes were well choreographed
- Makeup and costume designs were good. Not the most original that I've seen, but they weren't bad either.
- Well paced
- Story was well put together, as James Gunn manages to add just the right amount of drama, comedy and action to make the story work rather well on the big screen.
- The after credit scene is simply amazing, as it shows a character that I never would've thought would be back on the big screen in a million freaking years.
- Lousy 3-D conversion
- Story is predictable, and it still manages to fall into a few cliches.
- Villains aren't developed all that well, as many of them come off as the generic antagonists that lust for power schtick.
- Although the jokes are funny, it can sometimes get a bit distracting from the overall story arc. However, it's never enough to ruin the film.
Arguably the most fun you'll ever have watching a superhero film
"Guardians of the Galaxy" may have been based on arguably one of the least recognized comic book properties out there, when it comes to superhero films, but it's surprisingly one of the best as well. Giving off sort of an action adventure vibe reminiscent of J.J. Abrams' fast paced "Star Trek" films, while adding in a heavy dose of comedy as well.
While I hesitate to say this film is better than the likes of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" and "X-Men: Days of Future Past", I will admit that this is probably one of the most unique superhero movies out there. In fact, it's not even an actual superhero movie per say, as it's more of an action adventure comedy that takes place in outer space. Even if this film had nothing to do with Marvel Cinematic Universe, it still manages to hold up quite well on it's own.
The story revolves around a young man named Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), who was abducted by aliens after the death of his mother. Fast forward years later, Peter becomes the self proclaimed outlaw named Star Lord, but sadly only Peter calls himself that. In one brief scene, he mentions to a character that they might know him better by his infamous outlaw name, and in a dramatic tone he says it's Star Lord. And the character he says that to replies back saying, "Who?" It's a bit of a joke that the film does to poke fun at itself for being based on such a minuscule property. Without giving away too much, Star Lord finds himself in a heap of trouble when he tries to steal a mysterious Orb, in order to make some money. Little does he know this Orb might be more valuable than he thinks, and it could potentially change the fate of the universe.
Along the way, he runs into a sinister green skinned alien assassin named Gamora (Zoe Saldana), who has her own agenda with the Orb, so they're constantly at each other's throats. A strange anthropomorphic raccoon named Rocket (Bradley Cooper) and his partner, a tree like creature named Groot (Vin Diesel), hunt down Peter because he has a hefty bounty on his head. And of course, he even meets a maniac named Drax (David Bautista), who may not be the brightest guy in the world, but you certainly wouldn't want to p*** him off. Together these misfits reluctantly come together, after a series of events, to form a group called "The Guardians of the Galaxy", as they might just be the universe's one chance to stop this sinister new threat from coming; while keeping the Orb out of the wrong hands..
The story is probably one of the best that I've seen for a science fiction epic. Although it's a tad predictable at times, it never ceases to be entertaining. Offering up fast paced action, comedy, and adventure that it's almost amazing to see how much this film reeks of creativity.
Just when you think there isn't much room you can explore, when it comes to science fiction alien worlds, it seems like "Guardians of the Galaxy" defies that assumption. Not only creating an authentic plausible science fiction world, but the art direction for this film presents a world that has it's own unique feel and style to it. Granted, it's nowhere near as impressive as the original "Star Wars" trilogy, nor would I say the art direction is better than what we saw in the previous "Star Trek" TV series. However, this one is still rather impressive, and it's amazing that after years of seeing so many science fiction worlds in cinema that "Guardians of the Galaxy" is still able to present us with something new.
James Gunn pulls off this film perfectly. For those readers that have been following me for quite sometime, then you should remember I was a huge fan of his indie superhero flick, "Super", a while back. Although one could argue that "Super" was sort of a rip off of "Kick-Ass", it still managed to be a great movie in it's own right. Not only acting as a great satire for the superhero genre itself, but he actually managed to interweave the comedic, the action and the dramatic elements of the story together perfectly. Meshing those elements together to form arguably one of the best superhero movies of all time. It seems like James Gunn combines those same elements here as well.
Granted, I don't think anyone would accuse "Guardians of the Galaxy" of being a satire of any film genre, but it still has some of the same elements that made "Super" such a fun film to watch, which was action, comedy, and drama.. And given James Gunn's track record with movies like "Super", it seems like he was almost a perfect choice, for directing and writing it, if this is exactly what Marvel Studios wanted "Guardians of the Galaxy" to be.
The film is chalked full of sci-fi action that would easily rival any "Star Wars" film, while containing a heavy dose of comedic flair that quite frankly can be a bit distracting from the story at times. However, it's never enough to ruin the movie.
The technical aspects of the film are handled nicely, as you can tell Marvel spared no expense on this flick. Everything from the sound effects, sound mixing, cinematography, and visual effects are simply outstanding in this feature. In fact, the only real gripe that I would have about it's technical aspects is that the 3-D conversion is fairly lousy, as you can barely even see it half the time. It's kind of a shame this film was converted 3-D rather than being filmed in it because "Guardians of the Galaxy" had a lot of nice visual effects that might've looked halfway decent in actual 3-D format.
As far as makeup and costume designs go, I have to say they were fairly decent. Although I do hesitate to say that the alien makeup, and costume designs, are as unique as the ones you would find in either the "Star Wars' or "Star Trek" franchises, it was still fairly decent for what they were. Nothing really too memorable, but not bad either.
The acting performances were great, as the main cast had a strong chemistry among each other that resonated quite well on the big screen. Bradley Cooper's voice acting as the wise guy racoon bada** is simply a treat to watch. His comedic timing couldn't have been better in this, and Chris Pratt plays the self proclaimed outlaw like nobody's business. In fact, a lot of the characters are written rather well.
Sure, the villains are a bit one dimensional with the whole thirst for power schtick that many moviegoers have probably seen in a million other films before, but it's still entertaining for what it is. As a wise man once said, sometimes it's more about the journey itself rather than the destination of where the story takes you.
However, that's not to say this film doesn't have some surprises that'll shock you. The after credits scene for instance reintroduces an old comic book character that many won't see coming. I won't spoil it for those that have yet to see the film, but I will say this. The character cameo that shows up, in the after credit scene, is a character that I never would've guessed in a million years would show up in a Marvel Studios film. Having said that, I was actually kind of happy to see him again, as it brought back so many nostalgic memories from my youth. Although one has to wonder if his cameo means we'll see a spin off film based around him again, or it might just be a brief cameo to entice old school fans like myself. Whatever the case may be, it was still a great scene nonetheless. Moving on.
"Guardians of the Galaxy" can be predictable at times, and it can fall into various cliches of it's own genre. However, it's a fun thrill ride that I'm sure most audiences will come to love. It's arguably one of the most unique comic book films ever made, and it's worthy of all it's praises thus far. Sure, it lacks the same gravitas that "X-Men: Days of Future Past" and "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" presented earlier this year, but it's arguably the most fun superhero movie to watch of 2014. Definitely worth checking out in theaters if you haven't seen it already, as long as you don't pay to see it in 3-D of course.
© 2014 Steven Escareno
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