Ok, so my exception to my refusal to see movies opening weekend is my birthday weekend, because Marvel nearly always releases on my birthday, and I have awesome friends.
We saw Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2 last night and it was AMAZING!!!!
Seriously, I had read some mixed reviews of it, and I totally do not get where they came from, because this film definitely lived up to the promise of the first. I’m going to try to tell you why I liked this without getting spoiler-y at all.
First thing I really enjoyed was, as my friend Andy opined, that the bad guys were many of the things that are wrong in our society today, including toxic masculinity, blind conformity, and some other things that might be a little too spoiler-y to include here.
As always the effects were amazing. And Stallone’s small, a little bit bigger than a cameo, role was great, especially once we figured out who his character was. NO SPOILERS.
One thing that really stood out to me this time was that the female characters, Gamora, Nebula and even Mantis, had much more character development and agency than in the last one. Just be warned, the Mantis of this movie is not the Earth-616 Mantis. I kind of cringed when they introduced her, because she sort of embodied the whole subservient “oriental” woman trope. But she has agency of her own as well. Even one of the villains, Ayesha changes over the course of the film, the end result revealed in an Easter egg during the credits.
Peter Quill also develops a great deal in this movie, as does Rocket. I’d be hard pressed to say whose journey is most important in this film, because the ways in which all of them grow are important to defeating the big bad in the end. Peter’s is definitely the splashiest.
The fight scenes are well choreographed, the music is amazing and practically another character itself.
There is one thing during the build up to the big confrontation scene at the end, an admission by the big bad that I was a touch puzzled by. I think I’ve worked out the why he did the thing, but not why he admitted it at all, let alone at that time. I have theories, but that’s all they are.
Like the first, there are plenty of times when you laugh uproariously and others when you sob broken-heartedly. It’s a wonderful movie for what it is, which is a comic book movie.
And the Stan Lee cameo made me shriek.
As always, stay until the end of the credits for various Easter eggs. Again with the no spoiling, but the one with Groot is awesome.
Apart from the movie, I also received the Captain America Shield backpack, a Cap wallet, the Skottie Young “Young Marvel” Coloring book, a Tanith Lee short story collection I did not already have, and one of the 1632 books by Eric Flint.
All in all, an excellent birthday.
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