Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.212¦ 3D Blu-ray, Blu-ray, DVD
Is it just us or is Marvel taking over the world? In recent years our cinemas have been dominated by men and women in tight Lycra battling countless wrong doers. Not content with taking over our big screens, they’re also popping up on our small screens in their droves too (Daredevil, Jessica Jones, The Defenders etc).
This trend for heroes of a super nature doesn’t look like letting up anytime soon. Although admittedly suffering from SHF - Super Hero Fatigue – at least 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy offered something a little different from the Marvel stable; not so much superheroes, more curious individuals.
Surprise surprise that particular hit has spawned a sequel that sees the Guardians up for further adventures in space land.
With the gang now officially the Guardians of the galaxy, they find themselves in the position of helping out intergalactic folk in need – for a price, of course.
Ayesha (Elizabeth Debicki) is leader of the Sovereign race, and she has requested the Guardians protect some valuable batteries from a nasty space monster. By way of payment, she will release Nebula (Karen Gillan), the wayward sister of Gamora (Zoe Salanda).
The team tackle the space beast and protect said batteries. However Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper) can’t help himself and pockets a couple of the precious batteries, which does not go down well with Ayesha.
When Ayesha and her people attack them, they are saved by a mysterious figure, who eventually reveals himself to be Ego (Kurt Russell), none other than father of Star Lord Peter (Chris Pratt). Ego whisks Peter, Gamora and Drax (Dave Bautista) off to his beautiful home planet, where father and son can finally get to bond. But Gamora gets the feeling that there’s more to Ego than meets the eye.
Meanwhile, Ayesha isn’t about to sit around and let the Guardians get one up on her, as she hires Yondu (Michael Rooker) to hunt them down. This time around it appears that the Guardians are the ones that need saving.
Everything that made the original film a success, are in place in this sequel. From the kooky cast of characters, the retro soundtrack, colourful intergalactic palette, to the director James Gunn. All are present and very much correct.
This sequel, despite all its charm and space bluster, does suffer from an obvious weakness however – its story. Throughout the film exists the theme of family. So much so that it plays out like a soap opera; you have the father son dynamic between Peter and Ego, then there’s the on-going troubled sisters Gamora and Nebula, plus the maternal approach from them all over Baby Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel), and the blanket theme of family that covers all of the Guardians. It plays out like a predictable soap opera that offers little by way of originality. And let’s face it, there’s already a space soap opera out there – Pigs in Space, courtesy of the Muppets – so there’s no reason for another.
The retro-ness of the piece – which also extends to the casting of Russell and Sly Stallone – is endearing to a point, but is let down by some dire ‘classic’, MOR American rock. It would have surely benefitted from a sprinkling of eighties rock. Billy Idol anyone?
Now that Gunn has cemented the team, further adventures – and yes there are more slated to arrive in a galaxy near you soon – will hopefully be less Jeremy Kyle and more exciting romps through space.