The Guardians of the Galaxy, which released 3 years ago, brought to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, a refreshingly weird gang of superheroes who just had fun in the face of overwhelming danger while being awesome at the same time. As I said in my review of that movie, it was neither serious, nor was it filled with witty banter, but its comedy stems from mundane and silly conversations and frankly dumb characters. And yet it manages to get you into fits of laughter. Volume 2 has all the same traits of the first movie, except it also tries to add some sentiments, and that turns out to be its downfall.
Peter Quill (or as he calls himself, Star Lord), Gamora, Rocket, Drax and Baby Groot, now officially calling themselves the Guardians of the Galaxy, take on contracts to execute some Guardian work around the Galaxy and continue their adventures when they coincidentally run into some clues about Peter’s parentage.
The best part about the movie is exactly what made the first movie so great: its unique flavor of whimsical comedy. The characters have the weirdest conversations at the weirdest times, conversations that make absolutely no sense and yet it’s hard not to laugh out loud on more than one occasion. It’s not only amazingly entertaining, but you also get closer to these Guardian characters through this banter. The new addition to the Guardians, who replaces Groot from the first movie is an adorable little Baby Groot, which you can’t help but feel strongly for. You laugh when it dances, you’re sad when it weeps, you are angry when someone hurts it, and you cheer when it gets back at them. It’s to the director James Gunn’s credit that he can elicit all these emotions from a completely CGI character that speaks precisely three words. The visual effects are impressive with so many colorful planets, people, and animals around the galaxy. The “unspoken” romance between the leads is one of the only relationships that don’t overindulge and comes out feeling original and true. Yandau, Peter’s adopted father, makes the most impact for a non-lead character, and a particular scene of the rampage he unleashes on his ship in space, is a visual delight. The opening credits scene is also a hilarious masterpiece that introduces you to Baby Groot and the Guardians looking after it in midst of all their action.
The plot is has nothing really new to offer in terms of a superhero ensemble movie, and goes for the formulaic story recycled from many previous Marvel movies. That is not to say that it feels dull and boring. It adds its own twist by peppering this vapid plot with unconventional humor, making it much more interesting. Towards the end, the movie suffers from cheesy scenes and dialogues (one from Fast and the Furious: “We’re not friends. We’re family”). The biggest shortcoming in the movie, however, is that its overindulgence in all the relationships between characters turns into a maudlin mess. There are sisters trying to resolve childhood issues, Peter has a lot of father issues with his true father as well as his adopted one (Yandau), Rocket has some issues with Yandau as well. There are too many of these and its given unreasonable screen time. Ironically, the relationship that leaves a lasting impression isn’t any of these, but a more subtly demonstrated romance.
Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 will be an amusing 2 hours of your time, that will bring about hysterical laughter multiple times. But it does get more and more cheesy towards the end and the over emotional drama bogs down an otherwise lighthearted adventure. I will rate it 7/10. It’s a good time, just not as good as its predecessor.