Movie Review: “Guardians of the Galaxy” – Marvel’s Secret Weapon

Written by Jesse Gelinas August 04, 2014

The "Guardians of the Galaxy"

“What a bunch of A-holes.”

Iron Man, Thor, Captain America. These are names that resonate with just about every household in the civilized world. However, Marvel’s latest fare comes from a less commonly spoken title. “Guardians of the Galaxy” has burst onto the movie scene seemingly out of nowhere. Despite this, the ragtag team of antiheroes are intriguing and entertaining enough to impress even those uninitiated in the Marvel Universe.

“Guardians of the Galaxy” introduces us to Peter Quill, a young boy who’s just lost his mother. Before he has time to grieve, Peter is abducted from Earth by a band of mercenaries. 26 years later, he’s the self-styled Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), legendary outlaw. And he’s after a mysterious orb. Quill soon finds himself in prison with four other rejects: Drax (Dave Bautista), the vengeful maniac; Rocket (Bradley Cooper), the talking raccoon; Groot (Vin Diesel), his talking tree friend, and Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Thanos’ adopted daughter. Together, these scoundrels have to reclaim the orb; and decide whether it’s more important to get paid or protect the galaxy.

“I am Groot.”

The writing is a bit wonky at the beginning of the movie. It’s obvious the filmmakers had to rush to get the team together, and the pacing and dialogue suffer for it. A few decent jokes and a couple cool fight scenes help to hide the flaws though, and “Guardians of the Galaxy” soon hits its stride. Once the team is (Avengers) assembled, it’s chemistry, one-liners, and nonstop action. The Guardians lead us on a chase through the galaxy, outrunning police, pirates, murderers, and Michael Rooker with a metal mohawk.

The Collector in "Guardians of the Galaxy"

Benicio del Toro channels his inner Liberace as The Collector

“Guardians of the Galaxy” is the closest to a full-on comedy Marvel has released thus far. The jokes are frequent, and unlike in some action flicks, actually land. I laughed out loud a number of times. Chris Pratt has perfect comedic timing (see “Parks & Recreation”), and he and the rest of the Guardians play off each other so well from the get-go. Rocket and Groot make for some of the funniest moments in the film, and Groot with only a single repeated line. I actually found myself most impressed by Bautista’s Drax though. With little film experience, I found myself thoroughly enjoying his character. He seems to have a knack for the humour the film needed, and I look forward to seeing him again in 2017.

“Nothing goes over my head. My reflexes are too fast; I would catch it.”

If the film has a weakness it’s the villains. The Collector (Benicio del Toro), teased in the stinger for “Thor 2”, is in a single scene and nothing comes of it. Ronan (Lee Pace), a Kree fanatic and the main antagonist, just doesn’t seem that menacing. Sure he’s super strong and has a badass twist-tie ship, but when he’s not on screen I don’t even think about him. Karen Gillan feels totally wasted as Nebula, another Thanos daughter. Marvel really needs to work on its single-film villains if it wants them to be in any way memorable. Loki is the only one who leaves an impression (hence his appearance in three MCU films). We do get our first good look at Thanos and a taste of what Josh Brolin will bring to the role in a future film. That left me pretty excited, and helped soothe the lameness of Ronan.

Karen Gillan as Nebula in "Guadians of the Galaxy"

Overall, “Guardians of the Galaxy” is a refreshing new installment in the MCU. It’s a new kind of film for Marvel and to me, is going in a positive direction for the expansion of their universe. The Avengers have Earth pretty much covered, and it’s great. But the Guardians let our imaginations expand beyond our little blue marble, and show us some pretty cool worlds with some interesting and engaging characters. I highly recommend it for Marvel fans and sci-fi fans in general. It’s sure to entertain. Do stick around for the credits; the stinger will be a crowd-pleaser for die-hard fans, and possibly a head-scratcher for others.

My Rating: 8.5/10

Theatrical poster for "Guardians of the Galaxy"

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

About Jesse Gelinas

After years attempting to escape the Matrix, Jesse has accepted his fate as a writer and Senior Editor. Now that's he finished with his film degree, it gives him something to do while waiting for the machines to get careless.

Browse Archived Articles by

No Comments

There are currently No Comments on Movie Review: “Guardians of the Galaxy” – Marvel’s Secret Weapon. Perhaps you would like to add one of your own?

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Movie Review: "Interstellar"-An Unparalleled Reach to the Stars | We Eat Films

Leave a Comment