Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 ★★★★

Countdown to Infinity War

As with the first, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is a surprise and delight. With some first-rate visuals and production design, and the same sense of family that runs through the franchises core, it's an entertaining blockbuster that rushes the MCU forward.

Even still, the Guardians series is nice in that, while it still feels crucial to the success of the wider universe, it operates well at a distance. I'll be intrigued to see how they're incorporated in the forthcoming Infinity War. Vol. 2 is more of the same but remains fresh and bold. The visuals are second to none, with extraordinary colour palettes and grading, with terrific CGI across the board. It feels as though time has been taken to ensure everything is perfect. The ensemble are solid, with Zoe Salanda the stand-out here.

Surprisingly, the biggest misstep in Vol. 2 is the misplaced humour. A fair chunk of it works and nails the landing -- but a good portion feels poorly-timed and disruptive of the tone, rather than working cohesively or balanced. It's never enough to throw it off completely but it does interrupt the pace at times.

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