The Irish embargo on this lasted a bit longer than most other regions, but it's now lifted and I can tell you what I thought of Marvel's latest. Does Guardians Of The Galaxy deserve the praise that's been heaped upon it? I am Groot!

Be honest, when Marvel announced that one of their 2014 big screen releases would be Guardians of the Galaxy some of you asked "the who of the what?", while some simply wondered why they were bothering with such an obscure property. But then the trailer hit..and the rest is history. GOTG went from almost an afterthought to one of the most anticipated CBMs in recent memory -- and I'm very happy to report that you all have every reason to be excited.

Right from the opening title scene which sees Peter Quill/Star Lord (Chris Pratt) dancing to Redbone's "Come and Get Your Love" while en route to a space-heist, the tone is set. You've probably known me to take issue with Marvel's use of humor in some of their previous movies, but it wasn't the comedic elements I was objecting to, rather when and how they were used. GOTG is by far Marvel's funniest film yet, but it's genuine, flows naturally and doesn't offset any of the more dramatic moments. Of course it helps that the main characters are so damn likable and engaging.

The Avengers are cool; they crack wise, they save the world, etc etc -- but they are all pretty well paid for their efforts and (maybe Banner aside) accepted members of society. The Guardians are outcasts, downtrodden, desperate, but still risk everything to see a planet saved, justice done, and to facilitate the violent revenge of a bloodthirsty lunatic. In short, they're just better company.

As Quill, Pratt oozes charm and just-the-right-side-of-irksome cockiness to make for a terrific lead. WWE Superstar Dave Bautista is going to silence his naysayers with an assured, physical, and very funny turn as Drax. Zoe Saldana is as reliable as ever as the "deadliest woman alive" Gamora, though she doesn't really get to flex her comedy chops -- I guess there has to be a straight man woman. Then there's Groot and Rocket. You've heard these guys steal the show, and they do. Sure the Raccoon gets the funniest lines but it's more than that -- he and his adorable giant tree-creature pal are the heart and soul of this movie, and should instantly shoot to the top of most people's favorite Marvel character list.

Unfortunately the same can't be said for the villain contingent. Lee Pace is menacing enough as lead baddie Ronan, but his motivations are a tad murky. Something about a peace treaty he rejects, and so wants to exterminate an entire planet. His sidekick Nebula looks cool, but that's about it. Karen Gillan is a perfectly capable actress, but whether it's down to a lack of material or some kinda terrible line delivery, she just doesn't impress here at all. Oh and Benecio del Toro and Djimon Hounsou are also in the movie for some reason.

Also in the negative side of things, as risky as GOTG is in many ways, plot is not one of them. Sure there's an anarchic, suitably punchy vibe to the pacing  but ultimately it's Marvel Studios formula all the way, and the film concludes with yet another slightly convoluted air battle. Of course that won't bother everyone, but it would have been nice to have a few story surprises to go along with the rest of the gleeful craziness on display.

Here's the thing though: Guardians of the Galaxy gets away with it. The truly excellent stuff in this movie so far outweighs the bad that -- though potentially pretty big problems for another film -- here they seem like nitpicks. James Gunn deserves all the praise going for taking a bunch of little-known characters and, without solo films to establish them, bringing them to the screen as well rounded, three dimensional individuals, before putting them together believably as a team -- all the while making you laugh until you cry...then just cry.

Marvel's best movie? Not sure about that..but it's by far my favorite one. Not without some problems, but hilarious, heartfelt, and just brilliantly odd -- Guardians of The Galaxy is the most entertaining flick I've seen in many years, and chances are you'll want to go right back in and see it again as soon as you leave the theater.
Posted By:
Mark Cassidy
Member Since 11/9/2008
Filed Under "Guardians of the Galaxy" 7/30/2014
DISCLAIMER: is protected under the DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act) and... [MORE]
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RorMachine - 7/30/2014, 5:28 AM
Oh, in IMAX the 3D was actually really well used so check it out in that format if you can.
janitra - 7/30/2014, 5:38 AM
Damn, still need to wait 2-3 weeks before it is released in my country.
MarvelDCMan - 7/30/2014, 5:40 AM
will be happily seeing this tomorrow!
Theace69 - 7/30/2014, 5:40 AM
Did you get any Post-Credit scenes?
RorMachine - 7/30/2014, 5:41 AM
No, won't be until general release.
CaptShipwreck - 7/30/2014, 5:42 AM
[frick] and yes
blackandyellow - 7/30/2014, 5:43 AM
Drax looks like he could do some serious damage in the prison shower.
PanochaLibre - 7/30/2014, 5:45 AM
Wonder if Disney will do a Star Wars/Guardians crossover.
Indoorsman - 7/30/2014, 5:48 AM
Wonder no more PanochaLibre. That will never, ever happen.
CyberBishop - 7/30/2014, 5:50 AM
I saw it last week for the sneak preview and it was so damn good. I can't wait to tomorrow night to see it again with the end scenes.
Talontd - 7/30/2014, 5:51 AM
Thanks @ROR, great read.
charlie2094 - 7/30/2014, 5:54 AM
Good review! Should be seeing this, in IMAX, pretty soon.

Sounds exactly like I expected it to. Great to hear about the humor, should work naturally in Guardians where it was occasionally out of place or overused in some others. The whole quirky feel of Guardians and the character dynamic are hugely important aspects, seems like they've nailed it.

Shame about the villains (again) which is something other reviews have echoed, but at least they don't seem too bad, certainly not to a Malekith level. Same as with the similar plot formula and structure, but don't imagine that's too bad given everything around it is so different.

Can't wait!
InfiniteLoki - 7/30/2014, 5:55 AM
So excited! Ticket booked for 1:30pm tomorrow!
vPuik - 7/30/2014, 5:58 AM
I got my ticket for tomorrow's IMAX screening. Couldn't be more excited.
Desrow - 7/30/2014, 6:00 AM
I see it aswell, 3.5/5 funny film, but that's it. Gamora and Nebula fight it's one of the highlights of the film.
Null - 7/30/2014, 6:02 AM
Seeing it Saturday.
Abary - 7/30/2014, 6:02 AM
Great review, I don't think I can wait much longer, but luckily we only have 2 days to go.
LaserKing - 7/30/2014, 6:04 AM
I will for sure be checking this out in theatres.
kaput - 7/30/2014, 6:06 AM
So, with a review like that it "only" gets four stars?

Senor no comprende
Chucky2003 - 7/30/2014, 6:06 AM
Like always Marvel movies can't deliver on their antagonists,a thing that Dc did well on their movies,but I'm glad the movie is good
RorMachine - 7/30/2014, 6:08 AM
The movie has some issues. As much as I loved it, and yeah the fanboy in me wanted to go the full 5 stars, the critic is there too!
Nomis - 7/30/2014, 6:11 AM
Still not convinced this is worth a movie being made before many of other more prominent MARVEL characters but I will go in with a "caustiouslly optimistic" attitude.
sikwon - 7/30/2014, 6:16 AM
@Chucky2003... The only antagonist that DC delivered on was the Joker. Take Zod, the most recent.. for no good reason he was he'll bent on transforming the earth into Krypton... why? All the surviving Kryptonians would have been superman powerful in a matter of HOURS! That's all it took for Zod to addapt. Then they start breeding and in 1 generation they are thriving and powerful and clearly rule the Earth. His motivation made no sense, and that's from someone that LIKED MOS. And Bane was even worse. Just stop it.
Darthkost1s - 7/30/2014, 6:16 AM
I have to wait until September 4th. [frick]ing Greek theaters...
sikwon - 7/30/2014, 6:17 AM
@Chucky2003... The only antagonist that DC delivered on was the Joker. Take Zod, the most recent.. for no good reason he was hell bent on transforming the earth into Krypton... why? All the surviving Kryptonians would have been superman powerful in a matter of HOURS! That's all it took for Zod to addapt. Then they start breeding and in 1 generation they are thriving and powerful and clearly rule the Earth. His motivation made no sense, and that's from someone that LIKED MOS. And Bane was even worse. Just stop it.
iZinDiaN - 7/30/2014, 6:17 AM
Seeing it Friday in IMAX 3D! :D
marvel72 - 7/30/2014, 6:18 AM
@ ror

glad you enjoyed it,going first thing tomorrow.

can't wait.
Fun1gUy - 7/30/2014, 6:21 AM
NOOICE, love the reviews ROR, you always do a great job, can't effin wait to see this movie
gurugeorge - 7/30/2014, 6:23 AM
Yeah in terms of great antagonists, so far Marvel only has Loki, but so far DC has only had the Joker. (Luthor has NEVER been well-handled by DC.)
SadSuperman - 7/30/2014, 6:23 AM
Awesome! Going this Friday in IMAX!

Nomis, awesome avatar!
JacksonVegaIII - 7/30/2014, 6:25 AM
Marvel always struggles with its Villains and its final setpiece/showdown, in all honesty I cant think of a great marvel final act - Avengers probably gets closest however the shitauri wer very poorly established and just werent given the weight and danger they needed to create any form of tension and excitement, the formula never did it for me but ten films in its gotta be getting old for even the most furiously loyal MCU fan.

Gunns a great director and the gaurdians are a way more interesting bunch I just hope theyve got the bizzare n weirdness a set of characters/setting like this deserve
osideous - 7/30/2014, 6:27 AM
im one the few people who knew what Guardians of the Galaxy and was excited when it was announced
DrKinsolving - 7/30/2014, 6:34 AM
Can't wait for this, Thanos! I also really hope we get some Ultron footage soon
yossarian - 7/30/2014, 6:36 AM
Congrats on seeing it early. Good review.
SuperCat - 7/30/2014, 6:36 AM
Oh sh*t. Four stars? I'm in!
Superheromoviefan - 7/30/2014, 6:36 AM
In my country it comes outh on semptember
Greengo - 7/30/2014, 6:37 AM
Ok. Will be watching this weekend.
alexlunar - 7/30/2014, 6:38 AM
So freaking excited
Vegeta - 7/30/2014, 6:38 AM
Nice review, Ror. I hope it's as good as you say it is.
RorMachine - 7/30/2014, 6:39 AM
Guys, I'm not a side taker when it comes to Marvel/DC..but if you think DC's only great villain was the Joker you're nuts! All of Nolan's Bat-flicks has excellent villains, and what about Jack Nicholson's Joker and Michelle Pfiefer's Catwoman before that? Also, I though Zod was awesome in MOS. Marvel haven't only had Loki though, IO also really liked Winter Soldier despite his lack of screen time.
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