Guardians of the Galaxy was my most anticipated film this year and so naturally I was saddened when my work schedule got in the way of me seeing it on opening night. The ratings and reviews were scalding from all the heat and enjoyment this film brought, characterizations I had not yet gotten the chance to experience for myself. The trailers prior to the screening started and I said to myself, “Can we just skip all these? Just this once?” All was well though, for the clouds split in two to reveal this wondrous masterpiece.
Am I a terrible person if I say I’d never heard of the Guardians of the Galaxy prior to this film? I never read comics as a kid. I’m sorry, I know, I’m a terrible person. However, I loved the trailer for this film. Speaking of which, quick sidenote, I really need to make a post about my favorite movie trailers sometime.
Anyway, I really was coming into this film knowing nothing. This was the unknown for me. You know what? This film blew me away. Chris Pratt picks up the reigns like a boss to start off with and nails this character to the wall. Clever though irresponsible and hilarious though seemingly unaware of the dire situations he finds himself in, Peter Quill has a fantastic personality, the type of charisma and simplicity that I think everyone consciously or subconsciously wants to be around. The best type of friend, at least to me, is one that can create an uproar of racket and joy by the sweet sound of laughter but also knows that when the going gets tough, the tough get tougher and that now is the time to be serious for a change. Peter Quill is that guy and I love every second of it. Chris Pratt’s first big hit was a long time coming after viewing the talent he throws around here but that’s okay because there’s still time for him to do it again and again. If it’s the same spiel, I can live with that because it truly is a perfect embodiment that mixes the inner child within you, the immaturity of the teenager and the soul of the seasoned adult all into a colorful, vibrant weaving. Easily one of my favorite characters of the year.
Zoe Saldana is never a disappointment in her roles although sometimes the final product is just that. The surprisingly sensitive assassin is utilized quite well by Saldana’s polished acting skills here and the magnetism of her Gamora and Pratt’s Quill is powerful.
Then there is Dave Batista. Of all the cast here, this was the guy I was worried about. I think I’ve mentioned this before in one of my other reviews but actors should act and singers should sing, etc. Some people try to enter the acting business and just really shouldn’t. There are some exceptions of course like Jennifer Lopez and Dwayne Johnson but there are plenty of other examples of people who just shouldn’t have even tried. The first two examples that come to mind are here and here. That doesn’t take away from their accomplishments away from the camera. It only causes me to put my hands to my head and think, “Why?!” Thankfully, Batista is no John Cena because his acting is far and away superior. Granted, Drax the Destroyer isn’t an Oscar-worthy character, but he’s still a fun guy to get to know and Batista doesn’t get in the way of that.
The voice acting by Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel as Rocket and Groot respectively is superb and a few times I forgot it was voice acting because the voice and character join into one subject so well. The bonding the two characters demonstrate is a true loyal brotherhood at its finest. The villains are great and all the characters are an entertaining watch including Michael Rooker as Yondu. What’s better is that they all have their comedic timing down to the utmost point, with all the body language, facial expressions, and tonal pitches all contributing to it. If this film does anything right the most, it would be that it has the perfect understanding of when to be serious and when to be young-spirited. I get a lot of hard laughs out of this film but I also get some serious stuff that I can take away from this, too. The action sequences are impressive and beyond reproach in any facet.
Once again, if you’re new to my blog, I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.
80-89 It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (Tears of the Sun, Edge of Tomorrow, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Young Guns, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2)
50-59 This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (Vantage Point, The Starving Games, You’re Next, Thor, Full Metal Jacket)
40-49 This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Billy Madison, A Haunted House, 300: Rise of an Empire, Cowboys and Aliens, Serendipity)
30-39 Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30′s ironically define the 1930′s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (Planet of the Apes, Stonados, Redemption, Pride and Prejudice, The Contract)
0-19 Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Clash of the Titans, A Haunted House 2, Open Grave, Alien 3, Dark Fury)
My score for Guardians of the Galaxy: 98.
As a kid and an adult, many of our dreams will involve watching superhero epics and this film is that dream. I doubt this film will be beaten by any film this year in the box office or by my scoring. Dare I say, this may have been better than The Avengers?