Along for the thrill ride
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
Starring: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista and the voices of Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel.
Director: James Gunn
MARVEL keeps doing no wrong by their many fans. The comic- book entertainment juggernaut has opened the bottom drawer, plucked out an obscure title, and delivered the goods yet again.
There are no big names to be seen ( though two can be heard – more about them later.)
The story is complete balderdash ( a chase across space for a little trinket with a lot of powers).
The special- effects work wavers throughout ( within a spectrum ranging from out- of- thisworld to painted- on- a- back- fence).
And yet, as only the best action- adventure blockbusters can do, Guardians of the Galaxy gets on your good side with ease. From the get- go, viewers will sense
Guardians of the Galaxy feels much more unpredictable – and decidedly less “shaped” – than a typical major Marvel title.
Chris Pratt stars as Peter Quill, the only Earthling ( aka “Terrian”) participating in this scrappy intergalactic tale. He’s halfway across the universe with only a walkman and his late Mum’s fave mixtape to remind him of home.
This is a genuine breakout role for Pratt, and he masters the fi lm’s tricky tonal combo of clever, dumb, crazy and heroic in a fl ash. If you know Pratt’s work in the TV series
Parks and Recreation, you can probably already sense what a great fi t he is for a role that is Han Solo- meets- Indiana Jones- meets- Yogi Bear.
As a quest to fi nd something called an Infi nity Stone picks up momentum, Peter acquires an eccentric entourage that somehow becomes an elite fi ghting unit.
How eccentric? Well, there is the green Amazonian assassin Gamora ( played by Zoe Saldana) and the multicoloured muscleman Drax ( former pro wrestler Dave Bautista), for starters.
Both are fi ne characters, but have their thunder stolen by ( I kid you not) a talking raccoon ( voiced by Bradley Cooper) and a talking tree ( Vin Diesel).
Rocket is the cynical wisecracker of the picture. Not only does he get the best lines, Cooper gives them extra zing by reading them as if vocal- coached by Danny DeVito and Joe Pesci at the same time. Kids are going to love his work. Kids will love what Diesel does as Groot the tree even more, despite the fact Groot might only have a three- word vocabulary (“I am Groot”) at his disposal.
Nevertheless, over time, Diesel keeps altering the intonation of that one phrase to highly expressive effect. As a complete entertainment package,
Guardians of the Galaxy ticks every box for a major hit franchise of the future.
It might ultimately break down to nothing but empty calories, but it is always full- on fun. I repeat: always.
Now showing Village Cinemas