Earthlings, aliens, exuberant villains, an abundance of leather costumes and incredible mass of testosterone, tend to make for a good superhero movie. While Guardians of the Galaxy had the potential, it fell short, especially when compared to the high calibre of Marvel’s other films.
It’s practically inevitable that audiences are going to compare Guardians of the Galaxy and The Avengers as they’re two superhero movies in which the world is saved by a semi-dysfunctional band of unlikely heroes. And of course, when you’ve got the tree trunk arms of an Asgardian king, the witty genius of Tony Stark, the incredible badassery of Natasha Romanov and well, a Hulk, an animated raccoon with anger issues is seriously lacklustre.
The leader of the Guardians, Peter Quill, a.k.a Starlord, is a likeable character and Chris Pratt deserves an honourable mention for his performance. While still delivering humorous one-liners, this role was a far stretch from his role as the witless but endearing Andy Dwyer in Parks & Recreation. Not only was his physical transformation for this role impressive (hello muscles!), but he adapted well to the drama, action and slightly romantic scenes within the film.
The most prominent flaw with Quill though, was how ridiculously quickly he changed his mind about Gamora (Zoe Saldana). His decision to trust her developed so quickly and with only the tiniest amount of justification, it almost gave me whiplash. Nonetheless, I enjoyed watching their relationship develop throughout the film and admired that Gamora was a strong willed female protagonist who could hold her own in a fight, which is a relatively rare sight in modern cinema. And hallelujah, there wasn’t a kiss! I can’t remember the last movie I watched that featured a heterosexual couple who didn’t stop to make out at some point, so it was refreshing to not have the romantic element take over and dilute the adventure and fantasy elements.
The actual plot of the film was interesting but rather plain and straightforward. Our hero team finds an object that has the potential to destroy the universe, the bad guys want the object and an intergalactic hunt/race/battle ensues. Yes the fighting is cool, as to be expected but there was nothing spectacular about it. It’s an interesting movie to watch but somewhat predictable so seeing it once at the cinema was enough and I’m not in any rush to see it again or pre-order the Bluray.
Zoe Saldana rocks the Starfleet uniform better than the burgundy leather jumpsuit she dons in this movie and I would’ve preferred to see Bradley Cooper rock a leather jumpsuit than just hear his voice coming out of the mouth of a raccoon.
Obviously, fans of Marvel will watch this film, and rightly so because does have its moments and it’s always exciting to see comic book characters come to life. Ultimately, it feels like Guardians of the Galaxy is just a simpler, less impressive version of The Avengers that is more likely to appeal to younger kids more so than any other demographic. There is a talking tree after all.