Although the superhero film genre has been around for quite sometime, there’s never been a truly successful formula for a good superhero flick. Some movies, like “The Dark Knight,” find success with a much darker and grittier attitude, while others rely on well-placed comedic timing to win over fans. Then there are the films that should never have been made. I’m looking at you, “Ghost Rider.”
Because of this level of uncertainty in the genre, it’s always a bit of a gamble when a studio decides to launch a new franchise, and an even greater reward when it succeeds. There’s no greater example of this scenario than Marvel’s latest addition to their shared cinematic universe, “Guardians of the Galaxy.”
Before the movie’s release, critics were skeptical about its success due to the lack of notoriety surrounding the action comedy). Though once the first trailer hit everyone and their brother was humming “Hooked on a Feeling” as they pre-ordered their tickets.
And for good reason.
This isn’t the kind of movie you want to miss out on. Writer and director James Gunn set out to write a fun and vibrant movie about some of his favorite heroes, and he succeeded.
The plot carries a lot of wonderful elements from the comics onto the screen. But the greatest hero of the movie is Star-Lord’s Sony Walkman.
Originally used as a comedic device for actor Chris Pratt, who plays Peter Quill, AKA Star-Lord, and an homage to the comic, the Walkman ends up being the most important character of the entire movie.
Star-Lord’s trusty music player not only helps set the wheels in motion for the entire movie’s plot, but also tells a sub-plot of how Star-Lord’s mother and father first met. It’s a wonderful literary device that not only adds to the depth of Pratt’s character, but let’s the audience enjoy one heck of a movie soundtrack.
Although the movie does boast a wonderful script from Gunn, it suffers from a slow pace during its second act. There is a fair amount of comedic pacing that helps move things along where there is a distinct lack of action, but chances are you might get anxious for the movie’s third act.
That being said, a script can only take you so far.
Luckily for Marvel, “Guardians of the Galaxy” surrounds itself with a terrific cast that treat their roles with the utmost respect. Although every actor gives a great performance, one of the unsung heroes of the film is Vin Diesel as the always lovable Groot.
Although Diesel only had three words to memorize, he constantly discussed with Gunn the message behind what Groot was trying to say. Diesel even went as far as recording his lines in multiple languages so that other countries could hear his version of Groot.
Despite it’s few flaws, “Guardians of the Galaxy” remains one of the best Marvel films to date.
With a sequel already on the way, and box office results that make it the current highest grossing film of 2014, it’s easy to see that the Guardians are here to stay. That’s why Gunn’s team of intergalactic thugs gets four-and-a-half dancing Groots out of five.
From the Other Side of Radio, this is Jason McCall with “Hero Worship,” reminding you that not every hero needs a cape.
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