Hey gang, Valkor here. When Marvel announced that “Guardians of the Galaxy” would be joining the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe), I was really excited because not long before that, I had just finished the 2008 run of the comics. And I had fallen in love with everything about series, especially the cast of characters. When the 2014 film was released, I gave it a perfect score of 5 stars and to quote my own review - My thoughts about the Guardians are the same when it came to the first Iron Man film – it's perfection in a film! Now, here we are in 2017 and those galactic bunches of a-holes are at it again, with a continuing storyline, some new characters, and a bunch of groovy new tunes in “Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol 2”.
The short version of this review: The Guardians battle a planet.
Now that that is out of the way, let’s delve a little deeper, shall we? At the end of the first Guardians film, it is revealed that Peter Quill’s (Chris Pratt) father is otherworldly, but he still didn’t know who he was. Enter “Vol. 2.” where we kick things off with the Guardians assisting a golden race of beings known as the Sovereign, by protecting their batteries from a ravenous beast in exchange for Gamora’s (Zoe Saldana – Burning Palms) sister Nebula (Karen Gillian - Oculus). They succeed in their mission, but to knock the beings down a peg, Rocket (Bradley Cooper – The Hangover pt 2), steals a few of the batteries, which sets of the Sovereigns, who quickly go on the offense. Thankfully for Quill and company, a mysterious ship passes by, quickly dispatching the Sovereign ships. However, Quill’s ship is badly damaged and is forced to crash land. Moments later the pilot of the mysterious ship is revealed to be a man named Ego (Kurt Russell), who, as it turns out, is also Peter Quill’s father. Along with his traveling companion Mantis (Pom Klementieff), Ego has been searching far and wide for Quill. Ego explains that he’s a celestial being looking for a purpose. And he found that purpose when he met Quill’s mom. This is where we backtrack just a bit.
If you can recall the opening of the first Guardians film, a young Peter Quill is abducted soon after his mother’s death by Yondu (Michael Rooker - The Marine 2). As it turns out, Ego was the one who hired Yondu to fetch Peter. But for reasons unknown, he never delivered his package. The story goes even further than that; Quill wasn’t the only child abducted by Ego. Oh, there was more! Much, much more! All who were abducted by Yondu! In doing he has caused a rift between himself and his crew amongst the Ravager collective. But now that Ego has Quill, he can put his plan into full effect. And considering how devastating Ego’s plan is, it’ll take the Guardians Including Drax (Dave Bautista) and Groot (Vin Diesel) to give it their all to stop this galactic menace.
Quill and Ego’s story isn’t the only one involved in the film; first up we have Gamora and Nebula's sibling rivalry. Next is the budding romance between Mantis and Drax, but don’t tell Drax that as he thinks she’s ugly. Plus the two have some of the best scenes together (Loved it when Drax gags at the thought of being with Mantis). Then there’s the whole Yondu/Ego/Ravagers ordeal, which is quite chilling when you think about. Ultimately, the main theme that runs through the film is all about family. And there’s no shortage of details when it comes to that theme.
Finally, the film is chock full of cameos, easter eggs, and other surprises. I was glad to see Howard the Duck make a return, you get the obvious Stan Lee appearance, Sylvester Stallone shows up as a lesser known Marvel character named Stakar Ogard aka Starhawk, and then there are the credit/post credit scenes – five in total. In the end Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is chock full of awesome! And I can't wait to see it again!
“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” chalks up another win for Marvel and it’s the perfect addition to the MCU. The film offers a solid story, which does a well enough job continuing after the first, while also introducing us to some characters as well as giving us insight on the old. Peter and Ego’s story make up the bulk of the film, and when it’s revealed what Ego has done, your jaw will undoubtedly drop. I know mine did! There’s a hefty amount of side stories tossed around as well. And I have to say I’m OK with much of it as we delve deeper into the Guardian’s origins. Along with a great story, you get plenty of humor, loads of action and let’s not forget the music; I don’t think there was a single track I didn’t like. I especially came to life when “Flashlight” by Parliament kicked it. Yea it was during the credits. And since you’ll be sitting through to the very end anyway, you may as well enjoy it! The acting is on par with the first film, with some incredible new additions. I’m a huge Kurt Russell fan, and in Vol. 2 you get some of that classic, laid-back attitude that he’s well known for. But I will admit seeing a CGI Young Kurt was sort of creepy, but a pretty cool effect. And let's give a PerfectView nod to Pom Klementieff for looking all kinds of adorable as Mantis. Man, if Drax doesn't want her, I'll be more than happy to scoop her right up! In the end, if you’ve already seen the first film, then do yourself a favor and run out for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2”. It is the most fun you’ll have in theaters today.
While I really enjoyed Vol. 2, I’ll admit I liked the first film way more. Not to say the second film is bad, but I felt the first film had a better flow to it. Plus, it was so much more fun. My next gripe is with the five post-credit endings, which I think could have been saved for a DVD or Blu-Ray release. I was a little disappointed as I wanted to see something involving the infinity gems or even Thanos making an appearance. Unfortunately, we didn’t get any of that. However, we do get a glimpse at Adam Warlock, which is either a nod towards the Infinity Wars or the next Guardians film.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is making the theatrical rounds and if you’re looking for one helluva good time, then you need look no further as the film offers off up the same level of action and fun that the first film offered. And while I have a few qualms, I still think you guys will enjoy it. So out of TOV 5 stars, I’m giving “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” 4.5 stars.