Peter Quill, played by Chris Pratt, a ravager who steals an orb for an unknown buyer when the market calls. The evil Ronan seeks the orb for an unknown menacing purpose and sends his assassin Gamora to retrieve it. Zoe Saldana, who plays Gamora, is once again no longer flesh toned, but lucky for her she makes both green and blue look great! Bounty hunters Rocket and Groot, brain and brawn respectively, who attempt to capture Quill for his bounty and get entangled in the orb’s fate. Lastly there is Drax, a nippleless massive brute of a man donned in red tattoos and apparently allergic to shirts, along for the ride while seeking revenge and retribution. Dave Bautista, of WWE stardom, is a gem of a casting as Drax and the source of many a laugh and my favorite of the guardians.
At first, the film works feverishly but clumsily to lay the foundation for the plot and rest of the movie. Perhaps with more care, and a few more edits in the script, the introductions would have been more nuanced and maximized the effectiveness of each scene. The beginning was a bit slow moving, the action scenes were expected and, at this point in the game, cliche. Once the five guardians and hooligans team up though, it’s just pure entertainment with solid action scenes. There were definitely some plateaus and lulls during the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy (GotG) but in the end it was just plain fun, funny and ultimately very enjoyable with unique jokes and interesting characters.
Special effects guys earn their paycheck once again – in space there is a lot of body paint and prostheses, even on extras. It is weird to think how far we’ve come with CGI, I was never distracted and it seems like the FX team didn’t spare any minutiae. But with two main characters, Rocket and Groot voiced by Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel, being completely computer generated, every mouth movement, every hair follicle, every detail was on point and my figurative hat goes off to the entire team who worked on GotG.
Guardians of the Galaxy seemed poised to lay the groundwork for an even better plot in the future – like it was a part one of a series. Don’t get me wrong, it was great, entertaining and everything you want from a movie-theater-movie-experience, but I kept feeling like it could be excellent with a bit more time invested to soften the hard edges of the script.