Set to the backdrop of Awesome Mixtape #2, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ continues the team’s adventures as they unravel the mystery of Peter Quill’s true parentage.
After the stunning success of the first ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ film, many people have been waiting intently for the follow up, and they’ll be pleased to know that it pretty much sticks to that winning formula to deliver more of the same. The elements that were lauded in the first film are back and are utilised to a greater extent, which sometimes works for and sometimes works against the overall product. I wasn’t quite as enamoured as the general public opinion was on the first film, and I feel much the same with this outing, liking many elements but finding it difficult to see what separates it from the rest of the recent films in Marvel’s wheelhouse. Yes it’s got a terrific retro soundtrack and the dialogue is sharp and funny, but the plot is all over the place and it’s another film heavily reliant on CGI and explosions to tie things together.
The one thing that absolutely does work is the stellar and likeable cast, who are great once again without the need for the introductions of the first film. Director James Gunn absolutely knows what worked in the first film and this leads to more screentime for Michael Rooker’s bounty hunter, who gets a really satisfying arc in the film, and Drax’s humour is used even more – just on the right side of ‘still funny and not too much’ for me. The film makes a few strong additions to the cast, a couple of whom I suspect appear briefly in order to set them up for bigger roles in future Marvel outings, with Kurt Russell a standout as Star-Lord’s long lost father. Playing possibly the most abstract character in Marvel’s cinematic history, Russell does a superb job of grounding ‘Ego the Living Planet’, and I really enjoyed the father/son bonding with Chris Pratt (also shining with some more emotional material). Gunn also fixes one of the first film’s biggest problems and delivers stronger antagonist(s) in this outing, and I felt the film sufficiently heightened the threat felt by the characters so I could genuinely believe they were in real peril.
‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ is a fun sequel that delivers more of the same and I enjoyed it again, but for whatever reason, I’m not getting the real kick other’s seem to be getting from these movies!
Directed By: James Gunn
Starring: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Michael Rooker, Kurt Russell, Karen Gillan, Elizabeth Debicki, Chris Sullivan, Pom Klementieff, Sean Gunn, Laura Haddock and Sylvester Stallone