Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy

Get out your Infinity Stones and cassette tapes, we're reviewing Guardians of the Galaxy!

Peter Quill(Chris Prat), a thief, Gamora(Zoe Saldana), an assassin, Drax(Dave Bautista) a warrior, Rocket(Bradlet Cooper), a bounty hunter, and Groot(Vin Diesel), his thug companion, all want to make a big score. But when they find out that what they have is a weapon wanted by Ronan the Accuser(Lee Pace), they have to band together to help save the galaxy.

Well that's a fine movie ya got there.

It's really weird that I'd feel more comfortable taking a child to see Guardians of the Galaxy, what should be an adult film with sex jokes and creative swearing, more than I would Transformers 4, a movie that advertises and sells toys to small children. Sure, they both have the same rating, but at least Guardians doesn't say the word 'fuck'. Of course it's not just the language, it's the overall tone of friendship and camaraderie and just general fun.

Guardians of the Galaxy is fantastic. I LOVE this movie. It's so good on so many levels. It's very comparable to The Avengers: Simple story, great dialogue, great characters, great action, all kinds of fun. Like The Winter Soldier, it feels technically better than Avengers but I don't know if it has any particular moments better than those found in Avengers.

For one thing, in The Avengers, it seemed kind of contrived that all the heroes fight and then work together as a team. I mean that's what they do on team books, that's how these things get started, but even then it was stretching believability. But in Guardians, it feels natural and makes sense. They're all terrible people and criminals, so OF COURSE they want to kill each other. And it's so rewarding and works so well as a satisfying arc when they finally do kind of like each other and work as a team.

The dialogue is so great in here. SO GREAT. This is easily the most quotable Marvel movie since Avengers. It's all so funny and well-written and fun. It's a really fun movie. I can't spoil any of the lines but expect to hear "I am Groot" a few more million times. They're also all perfect in their parts. It's so well acted you forget Groot and Rocket are purely CGI creations that the other actors are just talking to green puppets. That's a feat in itself.

Chris Pratt is perfect because he's a goofball and just a bit of a sleaze. With the wrong actor or the wrong writer, he might have come off as a total asshole, but here he's...well still kind of a dick, but we're not supposed to think he's cool for it, and he's kind of adorable. I mean, he starts the movie off by dancing to his 80's cassette player. It's so SO great. Zoe Saldana is great as Gamora, though she doesn't seem to get as much backstory as the other male characters. She does get some dialogue with her cyborg sister, Nebula, and a pretty good fight scene. Bautista is the breakout star, as he's perfect for the very literal Drax. And then there's Rocket and Groot who will make you sob big ugly tears. The movie has a HUGE cast and they're all great. Lee Pace reverberates as Ronan, John C. Reilly is fun as a Nova corps cop, Michael Rooker is fantastic as Yondu, and Karen Gillan is incredibly badass as Nebula.

The action, like the rest of the movie, is amazing and super fun. Pretty much everything you'd want in a sci-fi space opera. A space prison breakout, tons of pew pew lasers, ship to ship battles, hand to hand alien monster combat, so much fun stuff that all looks fantastic. Groot is easily the most to watch as he grows and uses his branches for interesting new uses and then punches dudes with his big tree limbs. And then there's little things you don't expect, like Yondu's secret whistling weapon. So many cool things going on! The coloring on the movie is wild and beautiful, and the soundtrack is fantastic. It's basically the best of the 80's and 70's, but man does it ever fit perfectly. The 3D is pretty good too.

There were a few things that got to me. One thing that really stuck out, was Drax calling Gamora a whore, which, doesn't really make sense on any level? His whole thing is that he's literal in everything he says, and Gamora isn't a sex worker, so that has to be lazy writing just to contrast when he blasts someone else for badmouthing Gamora right after. That's a shame because it would have had more of an impact if it wasn't there at all. There's a couple of little things like that that didn't need to be there. This is a marvel movie that passes the bechdel test, with an alright number of female side characters throughout.  But, it's still one female character out of a group of five. There's no saying it couldn't have gone a bit further. And hey, I don't want to spoil anything, but I'm glad that there doesn't turn out to be a romantic relationship between Quill and Gamora. That's refreshing. This is a more racially diverse Marvel movie than most. In the movie, there's only one straight white guy on their group of aliens, and considering Saldana, Diesel and Bautista, they have three people of color in their group. That's exciting! Other than that thing with Drax there wasn't anything that was so terrible it kept me from enjoying the movie.

So yeah, it's a great movie. Can't wait for the sequel. I'm just gonna go ahead and say you should probably see this instead of that Ninja Turtles reboot probably. Jus' Sayin.

THE GOOD: Great action, great characters, great cast, hilarious, great dialogue, great effects, great story, friendship is great.

THE BAD: Some misogynistic language and situations that aren't needed

THE VERDICT: $$$$$ Go see it! Multiple times! You will definitely enjoy this over and over again and quote all of the lines forever.

MOVIES LIKE IT: Star Wars, Flash Gordon, Space Balls, The Avengers, The A Team

ONE-SCENE METAPHOR: Quill keeps trying to tell Drax metaphors, but Rocket explains that his people are literal and metaphors would fly over his head. Drax says, "Nothing flies over my head. My reflexes are too quick. I would catch it." Oh Drax.

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