Nearly three years after Guardians of the Galaxy’s initial release, the franchise continues to gain momentum as a household Marvel name. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 only solidifies my belief that the franchise will find success in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In the franchise’s second film, Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) finds himself and the Guardians on a quest to discover his true parentage. This spirals into an adventure that spans the galaxy, introducing us to new characters and revisiting old ones. I love how the film truly put effort into developing the back stories and characters. In terms of character development, this movie was full of it; each character seemed to have some deeper thing they were searching for, which was a great theme continued through the film. Chris Pratt continues to offer a strong performance as Peter Quill in the second film. As Star-Lord, he brings a perfect mix of comedy, snark, and emotion.
Gamora (Zoe Saldana) shows a great mix of characterization in the film. In Guardians of the Galaxy, I felt like Gamora was fierce and stunning, but didn’t have a lot of personality. The second film gives Gamora the opportunity to show more personality and allows Zoe Saldana to shine in the role. Rocket the Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper) has a starring role in this film and brings a lot to the table. Drax (Dave Bautista) continues to bring the laughs in as a strange but lovable character.
Of course, Baby Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel) is absolutely adorable, as we figured would be the case after all of the Groot-centered promotions. His innocence mixed with his great reflexes makes for a happy break from the more intense scenes. It’s amazing how a small, tree-like figure who only says one phrase can have so much personality. However, the performance I found to be most surprising was that of Michael Rooker as Yondu. I think moviegoers will be very impressed by his storyline and delivery. As to not spoil anything, I’ll leave it at that.
The soundtrack deserves a mention, of course. With a movie that finds itself focusing on “Awesome Mix Vol. 2,” how could it not? The film’s music flows as perfectly in the second film as it did in the first featuring songs including “Brandy (You’re a Fine Girl)” by Looking Glass, “Mr. Blue Sky” by Electric Light Orchestra and “Surrender” by Cheap Trick.
Just like the first film, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is visually mesmerizing and stunning. The CGI looks incredibly real to be fake, and the set designs are amazing. Seeing this film in IMAX 3D, especially, brought me into the story and made me forget I was even in a theater at all and I was completely immersed in the beauty and spectacle that this film had to offer. While the first Guardians looked spectacular, Vol. 2 takes the visuals to a whole new level adding vibrant colors and beauty throughout.
I feel like the film bridges the gap between movies like The Avengers and something extreme like Deadpool. It has the perfect mix of classic Marvel cinematography with comedy and humor that keeps the film moving at an energetic pace. While Deadpool is a much cruder and dirty, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 finds itself comfortably in the middle of these two types of films, making it a great movie for families looking to get in on the superhero action this summer. Marvel has once again brought a whole new level of fun and originality to craft an incredibly strong superhero movie, making for a strong film to kick off the blockbuster season.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 opens in theaters everywhere on May 5, 2017.