#52 & 53 & 57 GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
Starring Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Batista, Vin Disel, Bradley Cooper, Karen Gillan, Glenn Close, Michael Rooker, John C. Reilly and Djimon Hounsou.
Directed by James Gunn. 122 minutes short.
Wow. Just wow. Fun, exciting, thrilling and above all fun, with a captial F.
Set entirely, apart from a brief start on Earth, in a galaxy far, far away, Chris Pratt plays Peter Quill, aka Star Lord - a thief with a heart of gold - who, along with a band of thieves, assassins, bandits, rogues and a talking tree team up to save the galaxy from the advances of a diabolic villain and an orb of unbelievable destructive power.
Doing away with the need for some tedious origin story and just dropping us slap in the middle of a plot was a delight, why waste the whole first third of a film trying to cram in too much back story when you can just get right to the point. This was a terrific introduction to a band of originally disperate Marvel comic characters brought together by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning into an inter-galactic superhero team known as the Guardians of the Galaxy, a band of brothers wholly unknown beyond the comic world and yet that mattered not one jot. None of us knew who Princess Leia or Luke Skywalker was before Star Wars.
Seriously can't think of a fault worth pointing out with this film, every character had a personality and an attitude and even Groot, the talking tree whose only line of dialogue is, "I am Groot." managed to come over as well rounded. Can't help thinking this film is going to be game changer, it's by far the best Marvel movie so far, narrowly pipping this year's equally as good, but not quite, Captain America: The Winter Solider and is without doubt, my favourite film of the summer. It has a brilliant sense of humour, a fantastic lightness of touch and a fresh energy, that puts James Gunn heads and shoulders over the likes of Michael Bay and his, polar opposite Transformers 4, which is everything that this Galaxy isn't.
Special praise must go to Chris Pratt whose leap from TV actor to full-blown movie star is assured, his easy charm, and charismatic performance is the heart and soul of this film. Likewise special thanks to the makers of the trailer who successfully piqued our interest without revealing too much of the good stuff, because this is a film that you need to see before high praise builds it up too far. All in all an absolute delight, a treat and a glorious, funny, exciting and utterly enjoyable romp!
Can not wait to see it again and again and again!
If you know your Marvel comics, it's worth staying to the very end and catching a rather surprising end credit sequence and the return of an unusual superhero.