Movie Review: Guardians of The Galaxy (2014)

Posted: September 15, 2014 in Comedy
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guardians of the galaxy

Soon after losing his mother to cancer, Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) is transported from Earth by Yondu Udonta. (Michael Rocker) Twenty-six years later on the planet Morag, Peter steals an orb which is valued at 4 billion units and intends to sell it on the planet Xandar.  Ronan (Lee Price) wants the orbs to threaten extinction to the planet Xandar.  Ronan sends an assassin named Gamora (Zoe Saldana) to Xandar to retrieve the orb.  Two bounty hunters named Rocket (Bradley Cooper) and Groot (Vin Diesel) are sent by Yondu to capture Peter, and take the orb for himself. Drax (Dave Buatista) a prisoner on Xandar wants to kill Gamora, because Ronan killed his wife and daughter.  Peter proposes to take the orb to the collector (Benicio Del Toro) and split the proceeds five ways.  Does Peter keep the orb away from Yondu and Ronan? Do the others team up with Peter?  Does Ronan get the orb and destroy Xandar.

This could have been a really good good movie but the story is too muddled, there are too many characters, too many worlds and outposts, which further adds to the confusion.  Also, the movie can’t decide if it wants to make the audience laugh or shed a tear. The opening scenes depict young Peter losing his mother to cancer, and then he’s abducted for a laugh filled space adventure.  This movie is trying to have it both ways be a light hearted action adventure, and a sentimental drama, but it can’t do both, and it doesn’t do both well. The characters are paper thin, and instead of using the 2 plus hours of the movie to develop the characters, Hollywood uses its favorite filler, fight scenes and explosions to fill in any slow spots in the movie.  Ultimately the movie makes no sense , in 1988 humanoids are supposed to have mastered the extraordinary skills to achieve intergalactic space travel.  In 26 years, space flight becomes as easy as taking a bus.  Ludicrous.  Somewhere Stan Lee is smiling, because even the comics that no one has heard of are making him tons of money.

The acting and chemistry between the cast is just good enough to make some of this movie enjoyable, although if you’re looking for great acting from the likes of Vin Diesel and ex wrestler Dave Bautista, you’re probably hoping for too much.  Chris Pratt is good enough as an unlikely hero, he won’t make anyone forget Harrison Ford, he was better in the Lego Movie.  Bradley Cooper overdoes the non-distinct New York City mobster accent.  He may not be as good an actor as I thought.  Vin Diesel’s one line of dialogue is both a godsend and a running gag that goes on too long.  Dave Bautista is a good actor for a wrestler, or is he a good wrestler for an actor? It matters not.  Zoe Saldana is funny as both foil and romantic interest for Pratt’s character, and she handles the action scenes well.  It’s somewhat disconcerting to see a beautiful woman like Saldana covered in face and body paint, from the looks of the box office, she’ll be making two more of these movies and three more Avatar movies where she’s covered in blue paint for a change.  If the Avatar movies ever come out, that is. Between this movie, Avatar and Star Trek, she risks being the poster girl for comic con fans worldwide.  I just hope Saldana doesn’t get typecast.

This movie suffers from too much hype, both from fans and critics, it is not the funniest movie in the world, it is certainly not profound even when it tries a serious tone.  It is an ordinary movie that somehow got great reviews and word of mouth.  Take my word for it, don’t believe the hype, if you must watch it, rent it.  The 3D is not worth it, for the most part.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from watching superhero/sci-fi movies it’s this.  The viewer has to be selective.  The Avengers, Thor, The Spider Man reboot, all are a waste of time, and so is this movie. Be selective, and you will enjoy the genre.

The soundtrack is an melodious throwback to the 70’s.  Enjoy it.

Guardians of The Galaxy:  Spoiled Milk-y Way.

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