Film Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
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When the Guardians of the Galaxy first made their cinematic debut in 2014, no-one (bar hardcore comic fans) knew what to expect from a superhero movie featuring a talking raccoon and a big tree. As a result, the film took us by surprise in the best way - giving us fun, likeable characters, endlessly quotable one-liners and the catchiest soundtrack in recent film history. Following that level of cultural phenomena and popularity is no easy feat, but with Vol. 2, James Gunn gives us a hugely enjoyable intergalactic romp that will have you laughing, crying and singing along almost as much as the first film. If Vol. 1 was the Guardians' Avenger-type origin story, then Vol. 2 is like Age of Ultron - only much better. Following their formation, we join the rag-tag group of misfits in the midst of a seemingly heroic mission, employed by a race of vain, sexy gold people known as the Sovereign. Ever the dysfunctional family - complete with a Baby Groot in tow - the group soon find themselves at odds with each other, before suddenly being swept into the mysterious world-building charms of Ego (Kurt Russell), who, as it turns out, is the long-absent celestial father of Chris Pratt's Star Lord. Though expectations for this film will undoubtedly be very, very high, let me assure you that there is certainly a lot to love about this second venture. One of the most alluring things about the first film is the chemistry between the central five Guardians and the way they bounced off each other in their interpersonal relationships. Gunn manages to maintain that chemistry with a script that is rich with wacky one-liners and progressive character development. What's more is that he also succeeds in adding new or existing characters to the central group, with a lot of ease and humour.
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