When the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie arrived in 2014, it came as a breath of fresh air. Until then, superhero movies had generally been rather dour affairs with several taking themselves far too seriously. A brighter and more fun antidote to those over-blown blockbusters, Guardians of the Galaxy garnered praise for its wit and dazzling action. Based on the Marvel Comics series, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 picks up where things left off in colourfully fine style.
After saving everyone in their rag-tag manner, the group making up the Guardians travel the cosmos. They comprise Star Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saidana), Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), Baby Groot (Vin Diesel) and Rocket (Bradley Cooper). In between battles, they seek to unravel their personal mysteries with Star Lord wanting to discover his true parentage, especially with his father Ego (Kurt Russell). Amidst their emotional upheavals they find time to save worlds even when bickering with each other.
Directed with flair by James Gunn, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is an enjoyable ride. More family friendly and sentimental than the last instalment, its chief purpose is to entertain. On that score it’s a complete success with Pratt and company settling into their roles. You feel like you are watching a genuine team who feel like a family without the ghastly connotations the term means. Like any family, these characters squabble with the best of them but know how to unite when required.
Guardians 2 provides a massive spectacle which is a feast for the eyes. The colour saturation is amazing, especially when viewed in 3D. Each scene bursts forth with a litany of rainbow-like vistas and sound. The CGI is great and the action scenes are splendid. None of this would count if the story or characters weren’t engrossing. Both allow you to fully invest in what’s happening and match the quality seen in all areas. Whilst the ending lays on the sentimentality a bit too much, Guardians 2 sets out to be a huge slice of entertainment and succeeds on all levels.
Comic book fans should enjoy this second instalment of the series. The story is simpler which allows the characters to fully develop. The more emotional script adds depth to the sparkling carry-on. It’s an impressive second go-around from Gunn who hopefully finds the energy to deliver a third outing of an always-entertaining bunch of miscreants.
Reviewed by Patrick Moore
Rating out of 10: 8