It’s not a movie about people dedicated to protecting a bar of delicious chocolate - it’s much better than that.
‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ is just what was needed to refresh the comic book/graphic novel movie genre.
It’s hilariously funny, dark, the action sequences are tremendous, all the characters are as close to perfect as you are ever likely to experience and it boasts a kick ass soundtrack.
The film is based on the Marvel Comics series of the same name and is set within the same context as the Avengers series.
Peter Quill (Chris Pratt - ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ and ‘Her’) is abducted by aliens outside a hospital after the death of his mother.
The film then fast forwards 26 years later to where Quill, who now goes by the name of Star-Lord, lands on an abandoned planet and in a scene reminiscent of that from the the opening of ‘Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Arc’ he uncovers a precious orb.
Quill, who is now one of the most talented thieves in the galaxy gets more than he had bargained for when he comes face to face with Ronan the Accuser’s (Lee Pace - ‘Lincoln’)henchmen.
Ronan is an evil force within the galaxy and wants to harness the orb’s power for himself but when it becomes clear that he is intent on the destruction of the peaceful planet of Xander.
Quill begins to draw the attention of others when a huge bounty is placed upon his head and this is when he starts to come face to face with the other individuals who eventual go on to become the Guardians of the Galaxy.
I can’t stress just how ridiculously cool this movie is. ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ is so damn cool that it makes the the iceberg that sank the Titanic look like a small ice cube.
The only thing I could find wrong with this movie was that it felt overly long but even at that it was easy to tolerate because it’s so good.
Chris Pratt is terrific as erstwhile Earth dweller, Peter Quill, and brings to the role the perfect blend of charisma, comedy, action and intensity.
Pratt’s part in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ should go on to become his breakthrough role and the opening scene of the film where he begins searching for the orb whilst listening to Blue Swede’s ‘Stuck On A Feeling’ is certainly a contender for one of the best of 2014.
Director James Gunn and co-writer, Nicole Perlman’s decision to place so much emphasis and dedicated to much time to picking the music for the movie is an inspired one and Marvin Gaye and Tammi’s version of ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough’ never sounded so damn good in a movie.
Lee Pace’s Ronan the Accuser is perfectly menacing and over the top, Zoe Saldana is perfect as would-be assassin Gamora but the stars of the show are Vin Diesel’s Groot, Bradley Cooper’s Rocket and Dave Bautista’s Drax.
Groot, Rocket and Drax are hilariously funny but that’s not to say you ever stop taking them seriously.
In one scene, Rocket suggests Drax isn’t as sharp as the rest of them as he let’s things ‘go over his head’ but in remarkable deadpan fashion, Drax, who takes everything literally, replies under his breath that his reflexes are so fast that he would have caught whatever went over his head. It’s a hoot.
Another important facet of the film worth of celebration is British born cinematographer, Ben Davis’ decision to present many of the film’s key moments like they appeared in the Marvel Comic series.
Davis is one of the most talented cinematographers around and his work on films such as ‘Layer Cake’ and the very underrated ‘Seven Psychopaths’ is testament to that. Do not underestimate his importance to ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’.
As you would expect, a sequel abounds and it’s already pencilled in for 2017. It’s going to be a very long three years.
‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ is currently showing at the Brunswick Moviebowl. For full cinema listings visit www.brunswickmoviebowl.com or telephone 028 71 371 999.
VERDICT: 5/5 - ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ is without question one of the best ever films to emerge from Marvel studios. It ticks all of the right boxes but then creates a few new rules of its own. Everything about this film works tremendously well and credit has to go to director James Gunn. It’s an amazing cinematic translation of the comics and it’s also hilariously funny and boasts some of the best things about cinema this year. The music, the cinematography, the list goes on - go and see this film, you won’t be disappointed.