Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 ★★★½

I don’t know why 2nd films in a series always seem to fall short of the first film (with the exception of Aliens and The Empire Strikes Back) – perhaps it’s because you are already familiar with the franchise and expect something more/different.

In the case of this James Gunn film, since you already know the prime players, he gets a chance to dig a bit deeper and establish relationships – whether this is a benefit to the film I leave for others to answer, as I found it a mixed bag. On one hand I found the “unspoken” question of Chris Pratt and Zoe Soldana’s relationship to be typical teen boy stuff – as if it was ripped right from the pages of the source comic. Really Gunn, you couldn’t come up with something better? However adding a bit of insight into Rocket, Drax and Yondu kept my attention… and somewhere in the middle is the central theme of the piece, concerning Pratt’s yearning to find his father.

In the end you get the rather tired tome about your friends being your true family, but while an overused bromide, it seems effective here.

CGI wise this is the usual tent pole, over the top feature with almost too much to look upon at any particular time. Gunn does try to balance it all with a bit of humor and some intentionally comic bookish shots, but that last battle sequence, man, it seems to go on forever.

I found it interesting that during the viewing I felt that the middle section, with all the expose’ felt overly long and tedious, as I was waiting for more action… but then when that overblown action finally arrived I almost wanted to go back to more expose’ (but only if Pratt and Soldana stopped the dance).

As was the case with the first film, the music soundtrack really perks things up and is perfectly placed to reflect and augment what is on the screen.

Overall – I felt the film a bit long, and the pacing uneven at times, but there is enough humor and cool stuff (the beginning sequence is a hoot) to make this a worthwhile view in spite of the rather tired theme of the central villain, an energy entity that wants to spread itself throughout the galaxy (and kill everyone in the process… really??? … and hmmm, you know, I just realized that I could care less about Soldana and her sister, and actually found myself much more interested in Rocket and Drax than Pratt or Soldana… a definite switch from the first film.

Block or Report

paul liked these reviews