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Wick's Review

Created Aug 08, 2014 10:56AM PST • Edited Mar 12, 2016 02:39AM PST

  1. Quality
  2. Really Great 4.5

    Guardians of the Galaxy is an overstuffed taco of a superhero movie, chockfull of countless characters, considerable whimsy and confounding story lines. The crazy-ass result approaches blockbuster perfection.

    Star Trek for a New Generation? Absolutely, complete with a basso-profundo destroyer of worlds, warring alliances and freakshow aliens, plus a brand new moviestar – sort of a Harrison Ford redux, only funnier.

    Fully five stars get featured. They originate characters in a new franchise that may rival The Avengers before all is said and done.1 Three of them are primarily humanoid, the other two not so much.

    • Chris Pratt is the movie’s central star, or Star-Lord as his character likes to call himself. Peter Quill is his given name, not to be confused with Peter Parker, or Han Solo. Pratt is now a moviestar.
    • Zoe Saldana is a bitching assassin with severe Daddy issues. Saldana – already a moviestar – doesn’t disappoint. Green skin becomes her.
    • Dave Bautista, a WWE star, plays the role you’d expect a pro wrestler to play in a Marvel movie.
    • Vin Diesel & Bradley Cooper voice a superhero tree & a superhero raccoon respectively. Marvel, remember. Anyway, they’re a team. Diesel does more with one line – “I am Groot” – than many actors do with Mamet. Cooper’s got more piss and vinegar in his Rocket Raccoon delivery than in his human performances. Diesel & Cooper have improved their killer careers with these roles.

    Guardians of the Galaxy goes where no Marvel movie has gone before, with the partial exception of Thor I & II: It’s the first Marvel movie to be set almost exclusively away from Earth.

    Perhaps the extraterrestrial setting gives it license to indulge in such inspired lunacy from start to finish, as it’s also the most playful Marvel movie ever. Hmm, playful from the start? Almost from the start…

    Marvel movies are always grounded in human scale emotion. GotG opens with a little boy saying goodbye to his Mother as she dies from cancer. Bam. Pow. Marvel hits the emotional solar plexus, as is their wont.

    Guardians of the Galaxy is a super-primo Marvel movie, worthy of its major hype. Bring on the sequels!

    1 The Guardians are said to be meeting the Avengers in one of the @Guardian sequels we’re likely to see.

  3. Perfect 5.0
    • Chris Pratt as Peter Quill, aka Star-Lord: Born on Earth in 1988, he was abducted at a young age by a galaxy-trotting bunch of bandits. Pratt brings a goofy insouciance to the hunky role, for instance not being afraid to bring a dance routine to a gunfight. He’s the first American actor to mint himself a leading man position since Chris Pine resurrected Captain Kirk in Star Trek.
    • Zoe Saldana as Gamora, adopted daughter of a supervillain named Thanos: She’s got issues and deadly skills to boot.
    • Dave Bautista as Drax, a super-warrior whose family was killed by super villains: His autistic-level lack of irony triggers one of the movie’s several LOLs.
    • Vin Diesel as Groot, a super-tree with rapid regenerative capabilities and a profound worldview
    • Bradley Cooper as Rocket Raccoon: Groot is his faithful companion. Rocket’s got an attitude.
    • Thanos, king hell supervillain, played by an uncredited Josh Brolin
    • Lee Pace as Ronan the Accuser, a Kree supervillain
    • Djimon Hounsou as Korath the Pursuer, Ronan’s lesser ally
    • Michael Rooker as Yondu Udonta, outerspace bandit and quasi-paternal figure to Peter Quill
    • Karen Gillan as Nebula, the other adopted daughter of Thanos, distinctly lacking in sisterly love
    • Benicio Del Toro as The Collector, a deviant who can afford his addictions
    • Glenn Close as Nova Prime, the leader of the Nova Corps, whose mission is to protect the citizens of Xandar and keep peace, per Wikipedia
    • John C. Reilly as a Nova Corpsman
    • Laura Haddock as Meredith Quill, little Peter’s terminally ill Mother
    • Wyatt Oleff as little Quill
    • Gregg Henry as his kindly Grandpa
    Stan Lee

    Stan the Man gets his cameo during the first reel squiring a hottie who looks like a Xandarian pinup.

  4. Male Stars Perfect 5.0
  5. Female Stars Perfect 5.0
  6. Female Costars Perfect 5.0
  7. Male Costars Really Great 4.5
  8. Really Great 4.5

    Seventies pop grounds this spacey adventure in low-tech human emotion. Hooked on a Feeling for sure.

    Director James Gunn used that music and lots of inspired goofiness to give his overstuffed film bounteous charm. The only problem is that he & cowriter Nicole Perlman clearly had too much story to accommodate, given the richness of Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning’s comic book series. Thus you can’t tell the players without a program. For the rest of us, there is a helpful video posted nearby.

  9. Direction Perfect 5.0
  10. Play Great 4.0

    Ridiculously hard to follow, even with telegraphed plot turns. The nearby Comics History 101 video gives the backstory, though the filmmakers tweaked things to make them go down easier on the big screen.

  11. Music Perfect 5.0

    I’m loving Quill’s Awesome Mix, Vol. 1, The Pina Colada Song excepted.

    • Hooked on a Feeling by Blue Swede
    • Go All the Way by The Raspberries
    • Spirit in the Sky by Norman Greenbaum
    • Moonage Daydream by David Bowie
    • Fooled Around and Fell in Love by Elvin Bishop
    • I’m Not in Love by 10CC
    • I Want You Back by Jackson 5
    • Come and Get Your Love by Redbone
    • Cherry Bomb by The Runaways
    • Escape (The Pina Colada Song) by Rupert Holmes
    • Ooh Child by The Five Stairsteps
    • Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
  12. Visuals Perfect 5.0
  13. Content
  14. Risqué 2.2
  15. Sex Titillating 1.6
  16. Violence Fierce 2.5
  17. Rudeness Salty 2.5
  18. Fantasy 4.1
  19. Circumstantial Supernatural 3.1
  20. Biological Fantasy 5.0
  21. Physical Fantasy 4.1


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Aug 29, 2014 10:53AM

Regarding modern marvel’s Review
Great review Marvel. This movie radiates brilliance". Indeed.