Guardians of the Galaxy

HOLY SCHMOLY!

Marvel, hats off to you! It’s a movie about a ragtag bunch of alien criminals in space, with even less exposure before the film than obscure characters like Hawkeye. And yet, it IS SUCH AN EPIC MOVIE.

It has everything. Space battles, evil overlords, great characters, and most of all, it is straight-up the funniest superhero flick I’ve EVER seen. The film seems to like to make fun of the usual Hollywood clichés by throwing in as many anticlimactic moments as possible, just to induce laughter. The dialogue makes me snigger, and the characters, oh they are HILARIOUS.

Groot is Groot, obviously. Loveable, funny, full of one-liners (literally), and just the sweetest tree….thing. Except when he was beating the crap out of those Ronan lackeys, but hey, what’s a little brutality in the face of the cuteness that seeps out of baby Groot, dancing to some old classics?

Drax the Destroyer, oh man. I didn’t expect his role to be the comic relief of the team, of all things. I thought casting Dave Bautista might have been a mistake, given he’s a wrestler/MMA fighters and it’s a big movie for a man who’s only just started dipping his toes in the movie industry. But his lack of acting experience made his character even funnier, given that the guy supposedly takes everything literally.

Rocket Raccoon is probably my favourite character of the Guardians, with a smart mouth, a penchant for tinkering and destruction, and is pretty tsundere. Then there’s Gamora, who is more deadly than sexy (though I’m not saying Zoe Saldana is not attractive), which is great because a movie needs more than just a pretty female filling out the gaps. It needs a proper female protagonist, and Gamora was just that.

Then there’s Chris Pratt as Peter Quill, aka Star-Lord. I’ve never watched Parks and Recreation, but holy shit, if that’s the quality of comedy from him, I gotta watch it, pronto. He is just the perfect fit for the jocular, flirty, mostly idiotic, sometimes heroic Peter Quill, who was written in a fantastic way.

The main crew was just brilliantly written, especially given the constraints of a 2-hour movie. We get to know their messed-up pasts in brief, which don’t get in the way of the comedy as they bumble around the galaxy reluctantly while trying to save it. We get to see what sort of people they are, their antics as they get on each others’ nerves, and we get to see them in action. Cramming it all into a movie which needs to give a hefty introduction because no one knows these characters, and pulling it off while having plenty of action is a great achievement. Batman Begins, eat your heart out!

(Yea, Batman Begins was my favourite superhero origin film until now.)

And of course, we get to see Thanos and the Infinity Stones he’s after, which helps build the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Captain Marvel will feature Carol Denvers, who is related to the Kree story and of course, that means the Guardians. So the Avengers on Earth will eventually meet the Guardians, and I just can’t wait for that to happen.

Big, big kudos to James Gunn, for his inspired use of classic songs to set the mood of the film. While I didn’t exactly think that much of how the final scene played out, being a little too typical after all the anticlimaxes that the film throws at me for laughs, I can totally forgive it. Hell, I can’t keep the grin off my face. It’s a real departure from Captain America 2, which is all work and no play, but that’s probably why it’s so popular.

So, a brilliant plot, brilliant fight scenes and space battles, brilliant characters, brilliant and hilarious acting, and just the most enjoyable ride a superhero flick has given me, without leaving me with the impression that it was nothing more than just a fun film. What a sensational job, Marvel.

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 cannot come earlier. Oh well, I guess I’ll just have to settle for Avengers 2

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