It has been a long time since I have wanted a movie soundtrack as much as I wanted the movie itself. I mean, I enjoy getting the soundtrack to certain movies every now and then, but this is the first time in a long time that I felt the soundtrack fit into the movie so well and wasn’t just a means to promote a bands music. But enough about the soundtrack, let’s talk movie. Today’s movie was a little different from the other movies, not just because it did not feature any of the Avengers, but because this movie seemed to bring a lot more comedy than the previous movies did. Aspects of the trailer had me laughing and wanting to see more and when it came out, Guardians Of The Galaxy had me laughing at the comedy as much as I was cheering for the action.
The plot: In 1988, a young boy named Peter Quill is at the hospital visiting his dying mother but when she passes away, he freaks out and runs from the hospital, where he ends up being abducted by a group of aliens called the Ravagers, led by an alien named Yondu Udonta. 26 years later, Peter, calling himself Star Lord, arrives on the planet Morag and steals an orb but as he turns to leave, he encounters Korath, who plans on taking Peter and the orb to Ronan. Peter manages to escape from Korath and fly off in his ship but Yondu contacts him and after Peter refuses to disclose his location, Yondu puts a bounty on Peter. Meanwhile, Korath returns to Ronan, a fanatical Kree warrior that wants to destroy the Xandarian race. Learning where Peter is going Ronan orders Nebula to go and retrieve the orb, which he promised to deliver to Thanos in exchange for Thanos destroying Xandar, but Gamora argues that she should go instead and Ronan agrees to let her go. On Xandar, Peter meets up with a Xandarian named the Broker and tries to sell the orb but when he hears that Ronan is after it, the Broker backs out of the deal and kicks Peter out of his shop. Outside, Peter encounters Gamora, who attempts to steal the orb and the two end up fighting over it. Their fight is joined by a pair of bounty hunters named Rocket, a genetically and cybernetically enhanced raccoon, and Groot, a humanoid tree, who are after Peter. All four of them are captured by the Nova Corp and end up getting sent to the Xandarian prison called the Kyln. Hearing of Gamora’s capture, Ronan, accompanied by Gamora’s sister Nebula, is summoned by Thanos and told to get the orb and deal with Gamora, who has betrayed them. Inside the prison, many of the prisoners threaten Gamora due to her association with Ronan and that night, a group of prisoners grab her out of her cell and plan to kill her in the shower. The group is stopped by Drax, who want to kill Gamora himself as revenge for Ronan killing his wife and daughter, but Peter manages to convince Drax to let Gamora go as Ronan will be coming after her for betraying him, allowing Drax the chance to face Ronan himself. Reluctantly thanking Peter for saving her, Gamora tells him of her plan to sell the orb to get away from Ronan and her adopted father, Thanos, and says she will split the money with them. Rocket tells them what he needs in order to escape but when Groot grabs one of the items and sets off the alarm, they are forced to rush in grabbing the other items. Successfully retrieving the items (including a prosthetic leg that Rocket wanted to grab as a joke), Rocket is able to get into the control room, where he shuts off the artificial gravity, helping them to make their escape. Retrieving their personal effects, Peter has the others get on his ship while he goes after one of the guards who took his walkman. Ronan and Nebula arrive on the Kyln but find no trace of where Gamora and the others went, he kills everyone in the prison. Gamora leads the others to Knowhere, an outpost that has been built inside the severed head of a Celestial, where her buyer, The Collector, is. While they are waiting for The Collector, Drax, Rocket, and Groot wind up fighting and after Peter and Gamora break it up, Drax storms off. Gamora is summoned to see The Collector and inside his collection, he reveals that the orb contains an Infinity Stone. As he starts to pay Peter and the others, his assistant grabs the stone, unleashing it’s energy which consumes her and causes an explosion that destroys his collection. Peter, Gamora, Rocket, and Groot escape and Gamora says that they need to take the orb to the Nova Corp in order to keep it from Ronan’s hands. However, Drax has sent a message to Ronan and Ronan and his soldiers have arrived on Knowhere to find the orb. Drax challenges Ronan but is easily overpowered and left for dead in a tank of liquid. Meanwhile, Peter, Gamora, and Rocket try to use mining pods to get to Peter’s ship but Nebula and her fleet chase after them and destroy Gamora’s ship, retrieving the orb while leaving her body to die in space. Refusing to let her die, Peter contacts Yondu, who had arrived on Knowhere looking for Peter, and tells him where he is, then flies out to Gamora and places his oxygen mask onto her, saving her life. Yondu and the Ravagers grab Peter and Gamora and Yondu threatens to kill Peter but Peter and Gamora are able to convince him that they have a plan to steal the stone from Ronan and Yondu can have it afterwards. At the same time, Groot saves Drax and, after Rocket argues why he did so, they agree to try and rescue Peter and Gamora but Peter contacts them and tells them not to attack. Meanwhile, Thanos contacts Ronan and demands that he bring him the orb but Ronan, knowing what is inside the orb, chooses to keep the Infinity Stone for himself and use it to destroy Xandar. Inside Peter’s ship, Peter convinces the others to work together and help him come up with a plan and they all agree. Warning the Nova Corp about Ronan’s plan, Peter and the others join the Ravagers and face off against Ronan’s flagship, the Dark Aster. Rocket and a squad of Ravagers blast a hole in the side of the ship, allowing Peter and Yondu to fly their ships inside, but Yondu’s ship is shot down. As he is approaching the Dark Aster, the Ravagers are assisted by the Nova Corp, and Peter is able to fly inside the ship. Inside, Peter, Gamora, Drax, and Groot run into Nebula but Drax shoots her and Gamora goes to disable the security doors while Peter and the others try to reach Ronan. Outside, the Nova Corp use their ships to form a barrier to prevent the Dark Aster from reaching the ground so Ronan has his ships dive bomb the city, but Rocket and the Ravagers shoot the ships before they can reach the ground. Ronan uses the Infinity Stone to blast some of the Nova Corp ships, weakening the barrier enough for his ship to completely destroy it and continues his descent. Meanwhile, Gamora fights with a repaired Nebula and manages to kick her off the ship before disabling the security doors, allowing Peter to enter Ronan’s chamber and shoot him but the weapon has no effect on Ronan. Ronan is about to kill them when Rocket crashes his ship into the chamber, sending the Dark Aster crashing to the ground. Groot sacrifices himself to save the others by forming a cocoon of branches to protect them. On the ground, Peter and the others are shocked to learn that Ronan survived the crash and he is about to destroy Xandar when Peter suddenly starts singing and dancing, distracting Ronan long enough for Rocket and Drax to destroy Ronan’s hammer that contained the Infinity Stone. Peter grabs the stone and is engulfed by the energies but when it doesn’t kill him outright, Gamora, Drax, and Rocket join Peter and they are able to use the stone to kill Ronan before Gamora is able to seal the stone in an orb. Yondu and the surviving Ravagers arrive and demand Peter give them the stone and Peter reluctantly does, warning Yondu not to open the orb and Yondu and the Ravagers leave, with one of them commenting about their not giving Peter to his father like they were originally hired to do. Peter had actually given Yondu a fake orb and he gives the real one with the Infinity Stone to the Nova Corp for safe keeping. The Nova Corp reveal to Peter that he is a half-breed, which is why he was able to hold the stone, and have expunged all of his teams criminal records as thanks for saving Xandar before letting them leave on a rebuilt version of Peter’s ship. Peter opens up a present his mother gave him on her death bed, which contains a new tape of music, and after putting it in, they all fly off. Later, a sapling of Groot that Rocket saved and planted is shown to be growing and dancing to the music while in Knowhere, The Collector is seen sitting among the wreckage of his collection when Cosmo, a dog that was sent into space during a Russian mission and wound up part of his collection, licks his face and Howard the Duck, another part of his collection, comments about how gross that is.
Guardians Of The Galaxy met with high praise from the critics, earning a certified fresh rating of 91% on Rotten Tomatoes. The consensus among the critics was that, “Guardians of the Galaxy is just as irreverent as fans of the frequently zany Marvel comic would expect — as well as funny, thrilling, full of heart, and packed with visual splendor.” In it’s first 6 weeks in theaters, The movie was #1 for the first week, #2 for the next two weeks, then regained the #1 spot for weeks 4-6, making it the first film to be #1 in non-consecutive weeks and tied The Dark Knight for most weeks at #1 for a comic book movie. The movie was a box office success, earning over $773 million off a $195 million budget.
This movie is amazing in so many ways. The acting was fantastic, with Chris Pratt (Peter), Zoe Saldana (Gamora), Dave Bautista (Drax), Michael Rooker (Yondu), and Karen Gillan (Nebula) doing a great job in their roles. Bradley Cooper did a great job providing the voice for Rocket and Josh Brolin did a good job of giving voice to Thanos but I thought Lee Pace (Ronan) was a little too overdramatic. The story was good and did a good job of introducing the various characters as well as the third Infinity Stone and setup for the future. I did have some gripes concerning the differences between some of the character in the movie as opposed to the comics, primarily Drax and Nebula, but overall, the changes did not detract from my enjoyment of the movie. I loved the writing and dialogue in the movie as the banter between the characters was very well timed and helped make the movie really funny. I also loved the soundtrack as the various 70’s songs playing throughout the movie worked well in the scenes they were in. The special effects were just as good as any other movie in the MCU, especially in regarding the interaction between the actors and Groot and Rocket, who were inserted into the movie with CGI. A great movie to watch even if you don’t know the characters.
Rating: 5 out of 5