Movie Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)
When Guardians of the Galaxy first arrived on the silver screen people were pleasantly surprised. The love for the first one is seen in its box office dollars and the resurgence of the characters in the Marvel comic books series that followed. There of course is a lot of hype going into James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and plenty of room to fails. Fortunately, the film brings more of what worked in the first one with only a few of the tropes expected in an ensemble film.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 brings the fun, funny, and family moments
One of the biggest mysteries introduced in the first Guardians of the Galaxy was Peter Quill’s (Chris Pratt) father. Much around the plot and hype going into the second film was centered around this character, Ego (Kurt Russell). The film opens with a crazy battle as the Guardians of the Galaxy, composed of Drax (Dave Bautista), Rocket (Bradley Cooper), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Baby Groot (Vin Diesel…sort of), and Star-lord. Gunn goes about re-establishing the tone he created in the first film right out of the gate. The ragtag bunch of misfits argue while they also manage to work together to defeat this alien octopus.
Gunn fits lots of jokes into the film and manages to walk a line of adult humor, like the Jackson Pollock joke from the first film, while keeping the PG-13 rating. In fact, there is a whole conversation about the male genitalia that is hilarious. In fact, that joke is lead by Drax who is probably the funniest character in the film. Few would have ever expected Dave Bautista to pull off a character who doesn’t get nuances of communication while acting alongside so many veteran performers, but he does. In fact, the chemistry between the cast is one of the things that makes the film so much fun to watch. Everyone seems to be enjoying themselves on screen which makes their interactions so natural despite their alien looks and Sci-fi settings.
There are four big action sequences in the film and, while often a bit chaotic visually, are still extremely entertaining. The first action sequence is primarily shot from Baby Groot’s perspective as he is dancing and the rest of the team is fighting. This choice allows for some very funny visuals as members of the Guardians will fall into frame or fly across as Baby Groot is blissfully unaware for much of it. It only helps to remind the fans of the franchise how much fun a comic book movie can be.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 definitely isn’t perfect, but it features a better villain, even though his motivations for villainy still feel a bit contrived, than the first film. The characters grow a bit and Gunn manages to tug at the heart strings a few times while still making you laugh. It’s hard to talk about the best parts of the movie without spoilers, but know that fans of the first film shouldn’t be disappointed.
Marvel fans should know to stay after the credits for post scenes and Guardians brings 5 stingers this time around. Although, none of them really add to the MCU in any big way, but they are still entertaining. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 earns the Not Quite Golden, Ponyboy rating.