When Kree extremist Ronan the Accuser (Lee Price) threatens the planet Xandar, five misfits, Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Rocket (Bradley Cooper (voice)), Groot (Vin Diesel (voice)), and Drax (Dave Bautista), must work together to prevent its destruction.
I’m not sure what Marvel put in the Kool-Aid but I’m drinking it up. Guardians of the Galaxy is pure fun. On top of that, it tells a great story and looks beautiful. I have often praised Iron Man for being the model on how to properly make a superhero origin story, now I can say that Guardians of the Galaxy is the definitive example on how to create a superhero team origin.
Ever since The Avengers, Marvel movies have had a lighthearted feel to them. I am a big fan of this because it prevents them from going too dark, although they still may have serious moments. This tone also allows for some great humor. With comedic actors Chris Pratt and Bradley Cooper, Guardians is the funniest superhero movie since Iron Man 3. I don’t think there was one moment where I wasn’t smiling. Pratt is definitely the highlight of the film but I’d say Cooper is a strong second. Despite not having much screen time, John C. Reilly stole his scenes. He wasn’t overly heavy with the comedy but instead was more subtle, contrasting with his usual movie antics.
Currently, the Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack is the best selling album in the United States, and for good reason. The music is a great mix of classic 1970s and 80s rock and pop songs. If I didn’t have most of the songs already I would probably go pick it up. Besides the music, there are many references to the 80s. My favorites being Quill calling Rocket “Ranger Rick” and Quill explaining to Gamora the plot of Foot Loose.
This is one of the most unique movies I have seen in awhile. I couldn’t help but feel like I was watching The Avengers but in a skewed, Thor setting. Not many movies have a gun-toting, talking raccoon who travels with a talking tree. Actually, I don’t think any others do. Being the Marvel fan that I am, I appreciate them dipping into their less popular franchises.
I absolutely enjoyed Rocket and Groot. The duo reminded me of R2-D2 and C-3PO from Star Wars (except this time the small one was the interpreter). Besides Rocket being one of the stand-out characters of the film, several of his scenes were made better by his interactions with Groot. To go with the rest of the film, they were fun and goofy with the right amount of action sprinkled in.
With the set-up Benicio Del Toro’s The Collector had in the mid-credits sequence in Thor: The Dark World, I expected him to have a more integral role in the story. But the more I thought about it, I realized that he could become Marvel’s next Agent Coulson. In the comics, he is very involved in the cosmic side of things, and he could do the same in the films. He could act as the glue that binds several of the cosmic properties that are sure to appear over the next several years, showing up to offer explanations and add cohesiveness to the films.
If there was one thing I wished this movie did better, it would be to expand on the relationship between Gamora and her sister, Nebula (Karen Gillan). Guardians did well to build and showcase the rivalry between the adopted sisters, but didn’t do much more than that. There is large potential for stories based on their relationship, similar to Thor’s and Loki’s relationship, that I hope it’s picked up in future movies.
Marvel once again raises the bar on the superhero movie genre with Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s playful tone, great action sequences, lovable characters, and beautiful special effects blend together perfectly to create one of definitive team origin movies to date.
Also check out my reviews for the other films in Marvel’s Phase 2: Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Ant-Man.
Cast & Crew
James Gunn – Director / Writer
Nicole Perlman – Writer
Tyler Bates – Composer
Chris Pratt – Peter Quill
Zoe Saldana – Gamora
Dave Bautista – Drax
Bradley Cooper – Rocket (voice)
Vin Diesel – Groot (voice)
Lee Pace – Ronan
Michael Rooker – Yondu
Karen Gillan – Nebula
Djimon Hounsou – Korath
John C. Reilly – Corpsman Dey
Glenn Close – Nova Prime
Benicio Del Toro – The Collector
Avengers: Age of Ultron is gonna have to be spectacular now.
Yes, yes it will. But I think it will be able to deliver.
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Good review Drew. It was a very fun movie that I couldn’t help but smile pretty much the whole time through.
Thanks, Dan. I was the same way, it was just a ton of fun.
I give your review a 5/5. Lol! But on a serious note, I loved the film. It was a very good first outing for any Marvel movie (On a scale of awesome first outings to meh ones, I place GOTG right under Iron Man) and I am very much looking forward to it’s sequel. Other than that, I agree with the sentiment that AOU will have to be fantastic and blow everyone’s socks off.
Haha Thanks, Lex! I would agree with placing Guardians behind Iron Man. It just pulls everything together so well, the same way Iron Man did, but with an ensemble instead. The way Phase 2 has been going, Avengers 2 HAS to be great, or it will be bad by comparison.
+1. Yup. The hype is too much. AOU must go BEYOND the hype, lmao.
Great review! I loved this movie and it is my favorite Marvel movie so far. But agree with you about Gamora and Nebula. The movie didn’t really expand on them and other than Nebula resenting Gamora for the attention Thanos gives her, I didn’t really have any reason to dislike Nebula. I may be forgetting something but it felt like I was supposed to dislike Nebula just because the movie said so.
Thanks, Damien! For me, it’s not quite my favorite but it’s definitely in my top five. You’re right, the movie never gives a reason to dislike Nebula other than she sides with Ronan, and Gamora doesn’t like her. I understand the focus needing to be on the five main characters, so Gamora’s and Nebula’s relationship not getting developed doesn’t bother me too much, but I hope it gets picked up and expanded later.
I’ve had a hard time getting into the other Marvel movies when I’m actually watching them. I love following Marvel’s plans and reading fan theories for new movies but I don’t always like my time sitting in the theater. With Guardians I loved watching it and can’t want to read about upcoming movies. I hope the seed they planted with Gamora and Nebula gets expanded as well.
My mom is the same way. The last few Marvel movies I have watched I went to see with my family. My mom didn’t get into the other films but she had a ton of fun with this film, especially with all the 80s pop culture references.
Agreed Drew, this is as good as anything Marvel has delivered thus far. Loved it. Great review!
Thanks, Adam! It definitely is Marvel’s most unique movie to date, which I think is why it is so enjoyable.
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