Marvel has been destroying the box office with its series of films in a connected universe. We've seen the big guns, Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, and Thor (the male version.) Even the semi-lesser known (to the general public) characters of Nick Fury, Black Widow, and Hawkeye. When the film 'Guardians of the Galaxy' was announced (the tenth film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe), I was forced to go "huh." I knew about them, but i wasn't nearly as well-versed into their mythology and was wondering why this was on Marvel's slate of films to make. I mean why not Black Panther or Doctor Strange or Captain Marvel? All of my questioning was dismissed after seeing the very first teaser trailer. I was in and I've been waiting a long time for this film and after seeing it, I must say....PERFECT! Warning, SPOILERS ahead!
From the opening scene I felt like this universe actually existed. You're placed into Peter Quill's origin story and from that moment on you're attached to Quill. Chris Pratt is going to be a huge star. He is perfect in this role, with his sense of humor, he does extremely well as a leading male, and his fight scenes looked great. The entire cast was exceptional in this film. I never thought Lee Pace was over the top as the villain, and his second hand, Karen Gillan was great in her hatred for Gamora. Bradley Cooper's voice acting was wonderful, he gave Rocket a lot of depth and there's a point in this movie where you feel for all of our heroes.
The plot itself was large, but not so large that you didn't believe this group of criminals couldn't overcome the challenge, yet you still felt the peril in every moment until the end. They hinted at Quill's father's true identity. We got to see a captured Dark Elf in Taneleer Tivan aka The Collector's museum. Now the film was mostly CGI, but it never took away from the story or the moments in the film. It blended very nicely. Speaking of CGI, we got our first real look at Thanos sitting on his throne in his sanctuary. Being a Marvel fan, I loved seeing the Kree warship, loved the inclusion of the Nova Corps, the story of the Infinity Stones was finally told as well. This film was a Geek's dream! Thank you, James Gunn.
The music in the film was extremely well done. An original score mixed with some great songs handpicked by Quill's mother. The soundtrack was amazing. As a child of the 80's, I connected with Quill and his outdated Terra technology. Look kids, a cassette tape!
I said this film was perfect. I should have said nearly perfect. Marvel's track record for post-credit scenes has been remarkable. Except for this film. Listen, it would've been cool to see Thanos pop up again, or maybe a scene showing Nova, or even seeing that Nebula survived, any of these things would've been great. Hell, I would've been happy with just the dancing baby Groot scene being the last scene of the film. In the remains of The Collector's museum, we see The Collector sitting in the ruins and the debris. He's comforted by Cosmo the Space Dog (yes, Cosmo is amongst The Collector's treasures.) Cosmo licks Collector's hand and then we see Howard the Duck mocking The Collector. Yes....Howard. The. Duck. Booooooo. I was very disappointed with this turn of events. I'm hoping we don't see him having any part in any other Marvel Film. I hope that was just a gentle nod to all us Marvel fans out there.
That being said, I highly recommend this movie to EVERYONE. It just edges out 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' as my second favorite Marvel film just behind Avengers. This movie had it all. Action, comedy, drama, and romance. You don't have to be a Marvel fan to enjoy this, you don't have to know the source material (though there's plenty for those that do know it) to enjoy this film. If you want to have a good time at the movies, go see Guardians of the Galaxy. Its a lot of fun, and I can't wait for Guardians 2 and hopefully an Avengers and Guardians team-up to take down the menacing Thanos!
'Guardians of the Galaxy' is now in theaters and stars Chris Pratt as Peter Quill/Star-Lord, Zoe Saldana as Gamora, Dave Bautista as Drax the Destroyer, Vin Diesel as Groot, Bradley Cooper as Rocket, Lee Pace as Ronan, Michael Rooker as Yondu, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Djimon Hounsou as Korath, Glenn Close as Nova Prime Irani Rael, Benicio del Toro as The Collector, and Josh Brolin as the voice of Thanos.