Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 ★★★½

Yeah, this review comes off pretty late. Will-power as been pretty low and the lack of sleep is hurting my concentration as finals are looming dangerously on the horizon.
Anyway, into the review.

What's that?
A Marvel film that actually got stuck with me after watching it?
Crazy, right?

To be honest, my thoughts on the superhero genre have been going downhill this past couple of years. From mildly favorable to an indifferent void as every passing installment makes me care even less for this genre. You now have the right to discredit my previous review of last year's Civil War, the more I think about it, the less I like it; as my ever growing knowledge and standard have been raised, adapting such things as lasting impression after watching it, and applying it to that film, I realized how vacuously empty it was. Doctor Strange was passable, but I barely even remember anything from that movie that isn't the climax.

Why are you still watching them?

-My family likes these types of movies and it's their preferred choice when going to the movie theater, especially my bigger brother who's a comic book fan. In fact, I watched this with the company of him, just having a great time and relaxing after finishing an essay that was maddening the hell out of me.

Back to the picture. GotG 2, however, has stayed for a solid three days, but there's still some issues that need to be addressed.

The sequel has improved on numerous fronts, firstly the action is far more smoother and better choreographed than the previous installment's "a bit chaotic but still manages to see what's going on". Three action sequences in particular, the opening scene and two involving Rocket Raccoon got stuck with me with their sheer awesomeness.
The humor also sees a bit of an upgrade. Marvel's way of doing comedy is a bit of a guilty pleasure of mine, maybe because my sense of humor is kind of retarded? Anyway, whereas typical Marvel humor is the equivalent of a firecracker going off, grabs your attention for a sec. but you soon forget that it even happened, Guardians 2 is the slow but methodical detonation of a breaching charge. Comedic situations are actually properly established with a dose of self-awareness and while there're misses, most of them hit, and got plenty of belly laughs from me. The performances are decent. Pratt is lovable as always, Cooper is more bearable this time as Rocket Raccoon, Dave Bautista as Drax can be at times irritating, but it doesn't hurt much of the experience, maybe because he's largely relegated to a comedic sidekick. Gamora (Zoe Saldana)'s performance confuses me greatly, not deciding if her acting is on par with her cold character or just being constipated. Russel is still great, and might be more compelling than most villains from the MCU so far.

However, there also some issues. The safe approach is obvious, just check another review from people that didn't like it as much, that particular critique is going to be there, the established and inmutable formula but for me it took more "risks "for two reasons: killing off a character, and having the villain being emotionally connected to the protagonist. Yes, the route they go is more daring than the most MCU villains but it's still predictable in the outcome since it has been done to death. The narrative also seems to be more muddled. The whole thing with the group being split has benefits by fleshing out the characters and preparing the stage pieces, but hurts the main plot point of Pratt and his biological dad , but for those that were annoyed by Chris Pratt's Schtick, it could come off as a relief. The climax is... questionable, to say the least, especially when it turns somewhat like MoS in one point but it ends rather fast, thankfully.

It's good, I guess? Certainly marginally better than its predecessor by the added emotion and it's singular nature, if you liked the first, more than likely you'll like this one, and probably the other side of the spectrum can expect similar results. It's "fun". (I'm looking at you both, Diego and Aiggebe, ready to lynch me due to my repeated sins against cinema. I guess I'll go into exile towards the Andes and take advantage to slap Evo Morales in the face in the middle of the process.)

7.5/10

- I guess I need to watch Logan some day.

- + for the use of Mr. Blue Sky by Electric Light Orchestra in the opening sequence.

- Speaking of music, I can't get this track out of my head

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