Movie-A-Day 2014 - 247. Guardians of the Galaxy
You’ve gotta hand it to Marvel. After releasing multiple films to build up the Avengers, characters that were relatively well known before gracing the screen and are now huge moneymaking draws, the big red M has opted to release a sci-fi yarn featuring characters almost no one has heard of. That is quite the gamble. And when you’re Marvel, you can make those kind of gambles because in one way or another, it will pay off. Guardians does just that. Simply put, Guardians focuses on five mischievous troublemakers who must band together to protect the galaxy from a revenge-seeking terrorist who has just acquired a legendary weapon of destruction. This film achieves that rare successful blend of action, emotion, and humor, all the while using truly fascinating and memorable characters to tell the story. Who would believe that some of the funniest creatures on screen this year are a talking raccoon, a talking tree, and Batista (voiced by Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, and Dave Bautista, respectively). And not only funny. You genuinely care for the well-being of them and the rest of their crew, played spectacularly by Chris Pratt and Zoe Saldana. Pratt’s performance should show the world what tumblr and NBC already know: the man is exceptionally charismatic and should be a superstar. Quite an array of acting talent in the mix here, including Michael Rooker, Lee Pace, Karen Gillian, Djimon Hounsou, John C. Reilly, and Glenn Close. I will admit it does take some time to let yourself go and accept the film. A great opening segues into an Indiana Jones-esque heist that starts with Pratt’s Peter Quill dancing his way over rocks and water. We’re used to human characters thus far in the Marvel realm and to see some of these character designs right away can be a jolt to those not knowing what they are getting into. I saw this film not having read any of the comics and came away extremely delighted by what I had watched. You just have to let yourself get taken in by these five fantastic characters. Once you do that, you are truly in for a treat.