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Wednesday, 6 August 2014
Review: Guardians of the Galaxy - Let me tell you how much I love this film :)
Chris Pratt ... Peter Quill
Zoe Saldana ... Gamora
Dave Bautista ... Drax
Vin Diesel ... Groot (voice)
Bradley Cooper ... Rocket (voice)
Lee Pace ... Ronan
Michael Rooker ... Yondu Udonta
Karen Gillan ... Nebula
Summary: Peter Quill is abducted from Earth just after his mother dies. All grown up he retrieves an orb for a high paying client only to find himself being chased down by the lackies of Ronan, a warlord with an eye to destroying planets.
Let's just get the squee out of the way first - I loved this film, it was awesome. It's a romp of an adventure and oh, so, so ,so funny. I was laughing so hard at points I cried.
Okay, now I can be rational and tell you why I enjoyed it.
This film is unashamed fun. It's fast, with engaging characters, a decent plot and lots of special effects.I didn't feel it was anywhere near as complex at any of the other phase 2 MCU films or even some of phase 1, but then, that wasn't what it was for. There is none of the political intrigue of Captain America: Winter Soldier or the schenanigans of Iron Man 3, the Avengers or Thor 2, but then this is the Guardians first outing, so that would have been difficult. I think they went the right way and gave us a very entertaining film to introduce the characters with a lot of laughs.
The bad guys in this are bad and the good guys are good (even though they are supposed to be a little grey) and even the neutrals are good really :). It's an honest adventure, which is really an epic fantasy quest in space.
The whole cast is great, but Chris Pratt is simply amazing and so is Bradley Cooper. They are the comic genius of the film and their timing is simply stupendous. Peter Quill is a self-centred, arrogant idiot - only of course he's not at all and you see more and more of his true self as the film goes on. Rocket is a Raccoon and you'd think that would be hard to relate to, but he turns out to be one of the deepest, most human characters in it. Rocket is brilliant.
I loved the relationships between the characters as well. They felt kind of real. No one is a real hero, except possibly Groot. The whole disappointed father and rebellious son vibe between Yondu and Peter is so well done. Yondu is also a brilliantly kick-ass character. The relationship between Gamora and Nebula is wonderful as well. Both adopted daughters of Thanos their interactions are complex and not simply good gal, bad gal.
The plot in general holds together well. It makes sense in a step by step manner. There are a few details that made me go - huh, but that's more to do with physics and biology than the plot :). The only problem I had with it was the lack of detail about some of the players. Unlike in the Thor movies we didn't have an Anthony Hopkins voice over to introduce the main background conflict. We did have a Lee Pace voice over, but it didn't have enough detail for me. It didn't explain who both sides were and why they had been in conflict in the first place. I don't know anything more about the Kree at the end of the film than I did at the beginning, expect the fact that they're arseholes in general. Lee Pace's voice over talks about the traditions of his people, but never mentions what those actually are exactly.
The only other issue I had with the film is the same as I had with Thor 2 - the villain is two dimensional. Both Ronan and Malekith suffer from the same, I am the big bad, but I have all the emotional depth of a paddling pool problem. That's not to say the actors didn't do a good job, they did, but their characters weren't really given any depth to work with. They're both fanatics, but I never really understood why.
Ronan is bad and doesn't like the universe the way it is so wants to kill people. That's about all I got for his motivation. Yes he's a pawn of Thanos, but Loki was a pawn of Thanos too and he had depth out the whazoo. The good guys have so much more depth and even Nebula has a deeper character that is made Ronan look very uninteresting as an antagonist. I don't know, maybe I would get more from him on a second viewing. After all it is possible I was so focused on the good guys I just didn't take enough notice of him, but I'm not so sure. I've seen Thor 2 more than once and still find Malekith not very interesting.
That being said, this is still a great movie. I could watch it again and again. It has everything to push all my buttons, from funny characters to an epic adventure with a little bit of the mystical thrown in. This is my kind of film. I can't wait for Guardians 2. I hope everyone enjoys it as much as I did.
Have you seen the film, did you love it? Were there any parts you would have changed or was it perfect for you?