Movie Review: Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
Guardians of the GalaxyDirected by James Gunn Written by James Gunn and Nicole Perlman
Today’s generation is in need of a few pop cultural things that were around in earlier years. Music videos and shows about them, MTV’s “Total Request Live” and VH1’s “Pop Video” come to mind, Chuck Norris, and sitcoms like Golden Girls and Three’s Company. What is really missing though from this generation though is a movie that crosses all barriers, has fans from all over the world and has something inherently cool about it. Star Wars was able to do that for all the 70’s and 80’s kids and Guardians of the Galaxy finally delivers something comparable for today’s generation.
It reminded me of Star Wars in many ways, a villain with a menacing voice, a group of rag tag heroes who are an unlikely bunch, all different, but together are able to take down the alien bad guys. The formula worked for Star Wars and it made for a fun and exciting movie in Guardians of the Galaxy.
The film is about; to be succinct, a group of unexpected heroes who have to fight off and take down the evil Ronan (Lee Pace) before he destroys the world.
Lots of super hero movies come and go and at the moment there is a rise of them in the movie theaters, but this one has managed to stand out from the rest because it brings a different aspect to the genre. The characters are not as well known or recognizable like Superman, Spiderman, or the X-Men team, where instantly the moment the movie comes out people are doing comparisons of past films and a lot of the weight of the film stands on whether or not the main actors portrayed their beloved characters aptly. Instead with Guardians of the Galaxy, people were able to walk into the theaters with open minds and just enjoy the ride.
The characters in the film are the main reason why this movie works. They are all outcasts; people who walk to the beat of their own drum and misfits, how many people out there have not felt like that at some point or another in their lives? The characters were funny, lovable, and tough on the outside and inside people who just wanted to belong and fight for something they believed in. Which in this case was the salvation of the galaxy and the protection of mankind.
Directed and written by James Gunn, he is another reason this movie succeeded so well in a genre that is so trite and overdone. Fairly young in his forties, a former cartoonist, musician and geek at heart he was able to bring to the movie a fresh sense of what he probably grew up with watching. He made the movie, fun, light-hearted and one that didn’t take itself too seriously. Just when the movie would get a bit serious, it would quickly throw us something funny like Peter Quill’s (Chris Pratt) radio turning on and playing a catchy song.
As a former musician and vocalist, I am sure that Gunn brought to the table one of the best aspects of the movie, the soundtrack. I still cannot get “Hooked on a Feeling” out of my head and to sound like an old fogey, they really don’t make music like that anymore. The old school walkman and headphones that Peter wears made me nostalgic for a time when you couldn’t just press play and hear your song on your phone or iTunes. You had to know the order it was in on the tape and rewind it just perfectly to hear your favorite jam. Peter’s love and adoration for his walkman that his mother gave him was endearing and special and added a nice touch to his character as a whole.
The standout star of the movie is undeniably Chris Pratt. Finally the world can see a guy who normally plays the funny dude or friend, as taking on the lead role and delivering in every aspect. The best part is that Pratt seems to bring his real-life persona into the character. Peter is funny, charming and seems like a normal guy, not a hyper-conceptualized super hero that seems so out of reach.
While promoting the film, he has come out as even more lovable and charming. Pratt is the type of guy the dudes want to have a beer with and the girls want to cuddle up with and watch a movie. He has talked about stealing the Peter Quill costume so that he can go visit sick kids in the hospital (awww) and flawlessly rapped Dr. Dre and Eminem’s song “Forgot about Dre” on DJ Whoo Kid’s radio show (street cred holla).
The rest of the characters and actors who play them were equally fun and inspiring to watch. Zoe Zaldana as Gramora was pretty bad ass, she seems to do well as alien characters, Dave Batista as Drax the Destroyer was equally tough as he was sweet and the team of Rocket and Groot, voiced by Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel, were so fun to watch and probably had the best lines in the whole movie.
If you haven’t checked out this movie, I mean what planet or galaxy are you living in? Go out and see it. This is a movie that can be enjoyed by both comic book fans and non-comic book readers. There is a little bit of something in it for everyone.
And to all the movie bloggers out there, let's say it in unison, "We are GROOT!"
Some funny pics just because...