Rating : ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Although having a few weaker entries in their franchise, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has yet to have a bad film, at least in my opinion. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 only furthers that notion, stating that this franchise is around for the long haul. Even though it does feel like filler throughout the majority of the film, it’s about as good as filler can possibly get. We now find ourselves in the beginning of the preparation phase for the biggest film this franchise will ever have, in Avengers: Infinity War, so most of the films this year will probably feel like an appetizer. The biggest criticism this film has been receiving is the fact that there isn’t much of a story present. I have to whole-heartedly disagree on that. Here is why I believe Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is an absolute blast from start to finish. On the surface, this film really doesn’t have a plot at all, due to the secrecy of certain elements. The trailers for this film give you that it’s about the team going on missions, getting tangled up with Peter’s biological father, and exploring new parts of the galaxy. When you boil that down, that’s not much of a plot to go on, but once you watch the film all the way through and look back on it, the plot is pretty obvious. For the sake of a twist, the plot details are kept under wraps, so I won’t get into any spoilers. I thought that was a very bold move by writer/director James Gunn, because he could’ve easily lost the interest of his viewers. Once the plot of the film becomes apparent, I thought the film became great, and that is not the fanboy in me trying to defend this franchise. I throughly enjoyed this film from beginning to end. In the first film, the standouts were easily Groot and Rocket Raccoon, and even though they definitely capitalize on the fact that Groot is a baby in this film (which is incredibly loveable by the way), the standouts to me were all the side characters. From Yondu to Mantis, this film gives enough for these characters to do, making audiences love pretty much every single character on-screen, which is very hard to accomplish. Drax is definitely utilized as the comedic relief throughout the majority of this film, more so than the first, which was fine by me. If you go this film to gawk at baby Groot, laugh at endless jokes, enjoy some action, and especially to connect on a very emotional level with each of these characters, I think you’ll be satisfied. At its core, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is a character study, plain and simple. Where I think the biggest flaw lies with this film and where I can see many people dozing off, is the fact that there are quite a lot of scenes involving characters opening up to each other in order to explore everyone’s backstory in depth. For myself, I was fully invested in these scenes and thought it only added to the emotional impact. It can definitely feel like a film with a bunch of scenes slapped together, which is how I feel some people may view this film, but I thought it was great. It’s pretty ballsy to make a film solely on character development, but when that is the goal and the end result is this good, you won’t ever find me complaining. In the end, if you’re not aware that this film is going to be much more of a character study than anything, then please take this as a warning, because there is a lot of it. Filled with much more emotion than the original, much more comedy, and some pretty exciting action sequences, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is a great follow-up to its predecessor. Although lacking the stronger story that was held by the first, this film makes up for it in every other way. I won’t be able to score this film quite as highly as the original, simply due to the fact that the freshness level isn’t quite on par. That being said, I left this film feeling completely satisfied from the amount of emotion and entertainment I received. I can’t wait to see more from these characters. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is more than worth the price of admission and is among the best of the sequels to come from the Marvel Cinematic Universe.