Guardians of the Galaxy has been a franchise that is steeped in love, nostalgia and a message that is so very important for us to remember. Family isn’t who you are related to, it is who you love and who loves you back, and that love comes in many different forms. Tim Gunn loves his Guardians. He carefully crafted a story of friendship, love and sacrifice with humour and passion.
From this point onward… SPOILERS! Again.. Spoilers.
I have to applaud the digital effects department for making Kurt Russel look like he did in the 70’s and the establishing scene of Ego (Kurt Russell) and Meredith Quill (Laura Haddock) driving down the road listening to Brandy – You’re A Fine Girl by Looking Glass showed the love and delight that Ego and Meredith had in each other and how Peter Quill/Star Lord (Chris Pratt) started out in this world as an expression of those feelings.
But then we cut to 34 years later and Peter and his family of choice Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax (Dave Bautista), Rocket (Bradley Cooper) and a now Kid Groot (Vin Diesel) are getting ready to do the job they were hired by The Sovereign, a race of genetically engineered perfect beings who do not want to endanger their own perfect kind, to do, defending super spiffy space batteries from a monster who wants to eat them. Rocket is setting up a makeshift PA system for them to listen to music while they work. We get from this setup Kid Groot busting a move to Mr. Blue Sky by Electric Light Orchestra while his teammates take on the monster. It is a thoroughly entertaining scene and has some moments of absolute charm. My favourite was while Gamora was flung back by the monster and landed next to Kid Groot he waved Hi to her and she waved back. He also had a great moment when Drax was collapsed next to him for a moment where he stopped dancing as a call back to the end credits of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1.
Elizabeth Debicki was regal and arrogant in her performance as the Sovereign’s High Priestess Ayesha. Who pursuit of our heroes after Rocket stole the batteries that The Guardian’s were protecting made up most of the circumstances for our heroes to meet the main antagonist Ego, who is Peter’s father but also a living planet that has set out to destroy all of the universes only to remake it in his image. The scenes between Ego and Peter are filled with romanticised father-son bonding tropes and a sense of dread. Since all good things must come to an end, the main tipping point where Ego reveals that even though he was deeply in love with Meredith that he had to give her cancer so he wouldn’t feel the urge to see her again and Peter’s immediate rage and desire for revenge was the stuff of Shakespearean lore.
The rest of the story unfolds with the Ravagers led by Yondu (Michael Rooker) tracking our heroes throughout the galaxy to find the batteries and in the end revealing his true intentions on never delivering Peter to his father. We also witness the heartache that Yondu suffered growing up as a Cree war slave and in his relating to Rocket as being a “thing no one loves” the character becomes an endearing father figure.
Other stories in this epic masterpiece include the sibling rivalry between Nebula (Karen Gillan) and Gamora coming to a climax and the sisters making piece with the cruelty they were raised in and the healing friendship/romance budding between Ego’s pet humanoid Mantis (Pom Klementieff) who he has trained to help him sleep and Drax who is starting to wonder what it would be like to go on to the next step of grief, acceptance. All of which is culminated in the redemption of Yondu and acceptance back into the good graces of his fellow Ravagers who disowned him for breaking the code of not dealing in human life. In the end the whole Ravager fleet along with the main captains of the ships who comprised the original Guardians of the Galaxy from the 31st Century. (Stakar Ogord – Sylvester Stallone, Charlie 27 – Ving Rhames, Aleta Ogord – Michelle Yeoh, Martinex – Michael Rosenbaum, Krugarr and Mainframe – Miley Cyrus)
Other great things about this movie:
You will want to stay to the very end, because they delivered with a great end credit scene filled with easter eggs galore
Howard The Duck makes another appearance
Stan Lee’s cameo is top notch, he is explaining how cameos work to The Watchers
Sullen Teenage Groot makes an appearance
More of Cosmo The Space Dog
David Hasselhoff does the end credits music and appears in a key moment of the movie
Also, Adam Warlock sighting kiddos!