Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
written by James Gunn and Nicole Perlman
based on the Guardians of the Galaxy comic books by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
directed by James Gunn
Rating: 2 / 4 – Okay
Here’s one of those weird situations where everyone I know loves a film and I’m the only chump who thinks it’s just ok. A friend even called me a curmudgeon for not getting into Guardians of the Galaxy as much as I should’ve. And I guess she’s right: This is the type of film that should appeal to me, since it’s not your typical superhero extravaganza. But nope, I didn’t feel it. I can be a big grouch when it comes to movies (and other things), but it’s not my fault when films just don’t get it right, is it?
Guardians of the Galaxy continues Marvel Comics’ takeover of the box office with its tale of five misfit miscreants – Misfit Miscreants is now the name of my new band – who band together to thwart the evil plans for world (universe?) domination by Ronan the Accuser, a supervillain that blah, blah, blah. The plot doesn’t matter much in this type of film, and that’s fine. Director James Gunn smartly goes for laughs and self-deprecating humor, focusing more on characters interactions. He adds pop culture references and a retro soundtrack that includes Blue Swede’s way cool cover of Hooked on a Feeling (1974). But as I watched, I never got fully vested in these outcasts who learn to become a family by kicking evil in the ass. I just couldn’t help but think about other films and TV series who have done it better. Hell, everything by Joss Whedon pretty much falls in this category, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003) to The Avengers (2012). In fact, Guardians of the Galaxy borrows much – if not all – of its shtick from Whedon’s own short-lived 2002 series Firefly… and that’s an issue for me.
I did think Groot, the CG man-tree creature voiced by Vin Diesel, was pretty adorable. Does that get me any points?
Carlos I. Cuevas