Live Action Movie Reviews, Live Action Movies, Reviews

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Review


It’s time to look at the new Jurassic World film. The franchise has typically received low scores from me as it ranges in the 3-4 star category, but maybe this one would be different. I can’t say that I had high hopes for it to be honest since the trailers were rather worrisome with the dinosaurs getting trapped and everything. Unfortunately the movie is as bad as I feared with this part being played up a lot. As always the humans seem to have the edge on the dinosaurs which defeats the entire point of the franchise. Definitely a film that you are going to want to give a pass this time around.

The film starts off with the world wondering what to do about the dinosaurs over on the island. It’s about to explode so all of the dinosaurs will die unless the government makes a move. The lobbiests don’t care much since they can’t make a quick buck so the government decides not to intervene. This is when Mills decides to save all of the dinosaurs and calls up Claire. Claire is certainly eager to help, but what she isn’t quite as enthusiastic about is having to call up her old friend, Owen. Owen doesn’t want to help and prefers to drink a quick beer, but ultimately he decides to go along since the movie would have been over otherwise. The heroes are double crossed and all of the dinosaurs are captured. The heroes decide to plan a rescue op, but are they really ready for this?

This movie makes quite a lot of mistakes and the first one is one that I already referenced. The dinosaurs spend the whole movie being captured and humbled by the humans. They are caged up and easily defeated by sedatives. Naturally this makes sense as humans will always win thanks to their tech, but it doesn’t make for an interesting movie. After all, how can you be scared of these creatures if they are always losing? That’s one thing that the original film did better than the sequels since there wasn’t much tech at the place so the dinosaurs had control from start to finish. By putting them at the bottom of the food chain, it just doesn’t feel like a true Jurassic film.

Any scene with the humans and dinosaurs is typically brutal for this reason. There’s just way too much animal violence here for the film to have ever stood a chance. Then the film tried to play up the tragic angle by having a ton of Dinosaurs die a slow death as they realize that there is no way to escape the island. We understand their fate from the start so why do we have to watch it? Even after the main characters have gone through their tough experiences they end up making the wrong call and don’t want to help the dinosaurs. It makes you wonder why we didn’t get a better main cast.

Owen is basically the same character from the last film. He’s always ready with sarcastic comebacks, but at the end of the day he is just looking out for himself. He takes a lot of convincing to go to the island to help out Claire and even then he only seems to do it for her and not because he actually cares about the dinosaurs. He makes it abundantly clear that humans win out in the end. He has a good action scene though and makes for an amusing character. He’s not a heroic character, but I suppose he has his moments.

Then we have Claire who has done her best to help the dinosaurs. She is certainly a lot more noble than Owen. It’s just a shame that she didn’t use the last few years to workout more to prepare for another skirmish with the dinosaurs. Her romance plot with Owen is still pretty iffy as well and could have been cut out entirely. She’s not a bad character and doesn’t panic all that much anymore, but it would be nice if she could have done a little more.

Mills is the main villain and he isn’t quite as fun as the last one. He’s your classic rich villain who just likes to see the profits at the end of a long business deal. He isn’t very smart and doesn’t do a great job of covering his tracks, but since none of the other characters are that smart is tends to work out. There’s just nothing to differentiate him from the rest of the corporate villains so he will be forgotten very quickly.

Franklin is the comic relief character in the film. You do always have to question if a comic relief character is needed when the film is already part comedy, but I suppose the writers wanted to cover all of the bases. None of his jokes land and they are all ones that we have already heard. Franklin is just out of his depth here and it’s hard to see how he has lasted so long anyway. He naturally has his big moment at the end, but you won’t be able to take it seriously.

Zia is the touch character of the group and is made to be a complete contrast to Franklin. She talks back to all of the villains and constantly gives everyone attitude. She is ready to help the dinosaurs and never gets scared. The character can be a bit obnoxious like throwing out random insults for no reason, but I’ll definitely take a fearless character like that over someone like Franklin.

Then we have Maisie who comes equipped with her own subplot and a plot twist that the sequel will probably delve into. She’s a decent enough kid who is smart during some moments and less so in others. Once she found out that the villain was doing something behind her grand father’s back she should have called the cops. Of course, he should have done the same thing but made the worst move in the film as he asked the main villain to call the cops. That’s certainly never going to happen when you’re dealing with a legitimate villain. Maisie wins back some points for making the right call at the end of the film though so I’ve definitely got to give her credit there.

As far as the new dinosaur goes, the design was fairly lazy. It just doesn’t have as much personality as the big dino from the last film as it just looks like a big raptor. There’s not much to say about it and while the dinosaur is very strong, I think the T Rex probably could have beaten it. Intelligence was its most potent weapon and that won’t help much when you’re being overwhelmed in a fight. Blue was a loyal dinosaur as always and looked pretty good. It’s just a shame that everyone is always after it and Owen isn’t strong enough to protect her. This is why Blue certainly made the right choice in the end.

The ending of the film is decent as we finally may get to spread things out a bit. Hopefully it doesn’t just lead to the cops shooting dinosaurs all around though as we get to a Transformers situation where the humans have once again gained the upper hand. Hopefully we get to see the water dinosaur again as it keeps on getting quick cameos but then the film is afraid to show it any longer. I get that the dinosaur is OP, but I would still like to see him be featured more. Due to the nature of Dinosaur films though, it’s unlikely that we will ever see a Jurassic World film that is actually good. At most we get glimpses of what it could be like with these two films when the dinosaurs aren’t around. It turns into a bit of a cheesy comedy with less than amazing characters, but at least it’s an enjoyable film. As soon as the dinosaurs come in they bring with them a whole slew of negatives that outweigh the positives.

The writing certainly isn’t good which goes without saying. Nobody knows how to act around dinosaurs and the characters are so busy trying to be funny that they don’t seem to understand the gravity of the situation. The film even throws in some crude humor in an attempt to be funny, but like everything else this film failed at that as well. Also, you may not want to bother sticking around for the after credits scene as it’s a little pointless since we already get the general idea of it from the normal ending. I was hoping for something with a little more impact like another super dinosaur running around. That would have been a little more exciting. At the very least, I would have liked to have seen NYC get involved.

Overall, Fallen Kingdom is possibly the weakest Jurassic Park film. Currently I believe I have the weakest one as either being the first or the 2nd. It’s a tough call though as those 2 and Jurassic World all got 3s if I recall correctly. This one just combines the weakest elements from the various films and pulls them all together. It brings back the annoying human characters from the last one, throws in the goat scene from the first film, and also brings in the government involvement from one of the other films, but adds it on quite a bit more than any of the others. It’s just a very mean film and one with no replay value. If you like Dinosaurs then this is a film that you will want to skip. I’d sooner recommend checking out an iconic Godzilla film like Final Wars. That movie will still give you big creature fights without any of the extra stuff.

Overall 2/10

Live Action Movie Reviews, Live Action Movies, Reviews

Jurassic World Review

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I recently saw all three Jurassic Park films so I was all set for this one. To an extent, the premise of the Jurassic Park franchise guarantees that the films will always get low scores thanks to the fact that it revolves around dinosaurs and will have a lot of animal violence. This film is no exception and it’s safe to say that it does lose to Jurassic Park III, but beats the first two films. If you’re a fan of the older films, you should definitely enjoy this one.

Claire has helped to put Jurassic Park back onto the map as the new amusement park, Jurassic World. While her boss doesn’t care to much about the financial part of the operations, that’s where she comes in. She had her team create a new dinosaur that was even bigger than the T Rex to increase the wow factor of the park, but ends up underestimating the creature. It escapes so she is forced to call in the resident dinosaur expert, Owen Grady!

That’s essentially the plot in a nutshell and while I will be talking about the film a lot, I’ll try to avoid spoilers. I managed to see this film yesterday which was fun since a day 0 viewing is always intense. The audience wasn’t quite as ready to roll as they were in Age of Ultron or the first Avengers, but it’s mostly due to the timeslot. They were still ready for action though and I had my comfortable recliner so I was ready for anything as well.

I was cracking up for the first 30-45 minutes. Roughly of course since this isn’t the kind of film where you will be glancing at your watch. It was probably partially intentional by the film, but I mostly didn’t laugh at its jokes, but at the scenes due to being unintentionally funny. One example of a joke where I was laughing (on the inside, I rarely laugh on the outside) was when the parents tease Zach after his heartwarming moment with his friend. It was all in good fun so the parents went a little higher on my coolness chart. They were essentially non factors here though as their screen time was minimal. The kids were fairly awful, but they did help the humor for the film.

Another example is when the two kids finally meet up with Claire. She tries to be nice and excited about seeing them only to get one of the more awkward receptions. Zach basically doesn’t want to talk to her at all and Gray’s mood swings of being somber and then super excited don’t wait for anyone. Claire can’t stay so she lets her assistant babysit them. You just gotta feel bad for Claire and I sympathized with her for the whole film. She doesn’t have a lot of free time so it makes sense that she hasn’t seen her nephews in 7 years. It’s regrettable, but these things happen and the kids shouldn’t hold it against her. She’s trying to be a good Aunt, but they never even gave her a chance. Gray may have, but he was disheartened when she couldn’t stay.

Let’s quickly talk about the two kids. Zach’s thing is that he believes that he’s really cool. He completely ignores his parents at times and ends up flirting with every single girl that he meets. (Even though he’s taken) Zach’s constantly giving Gray a hard time. “Sometimes we have to grow up!” Those may not have been his exact words, but he gets a lot of the most generic dialogue in the film and he’s also a shining bad example in many situations like when he decides to head to the forbidden zone. He felt like the kind of character that you would see in a commercial warning you not to hang out with people like that. He has his hero moments towards the end with Gray of course and he sees the light, but that would help him in the sequel, not here. He was just terrible.

No worries, Gray was awful as well. He’s way too excited and constantly blasts through rides to the dismay of the babysitter. At one point, he starts to whine about where all the dinosaurs are…even though we see that dozens of them are in front of him only about a minute later. There’s no way that he wouldn’t have been able to see them. It reminds me of a critique for the flowers film where someone saw a dead body before they ever could have seen it. Sort of the opposite of this event. Gray really had no consideration for anyone but himself during his visit to the park and while you can sympathize with him since Zach doesn’t want to hang out with him, Gray should have still done a better job of enjoying the park. He’s also pretty emotionless when pointing out a giant dinosaur that is around.

Time for a few quick nitpicks. After two characters jump into a lake, we see them walking a few minutes later and they are hardly wet. Their hair is matter and one of the T shirts is soggy, but the characters look way too dry considering the fact that they were completely underwater for a little while. Anyone who has ever jumped into a pool and then walked out will know that you don’t dry out that quickly. There’s also the ball ride where two characters explore the park. Even once an emergency announcement cuts off the presentation and tells everyone to leave…the ball is unaffected. The passenger still has complete control of it and that’s certainly not very safe. If passengers could control these things to go wherever they wanted, people would constantly be crashing into dinosaurs.

I did also chuckle at the fact that one guy’s whole job was making sure that all of the balls were safe during the crisis. He tells everyone that they’re all safe until he actually looks at the screen and realizes that one is gone. Whoops….that didn’t look too good for the guy. I liked his Dinosaur collection and admired the fact that he always talked a good game, but he was out of his league and he also tried flirting towards the end. Luckily, it wound up being the ultimate friend zone moment and I thought that it was handled rather well. We need more friend zone moments to be honest as they would make just about every film better.

The actual park is definitely somewhere that you would want to go and it looks kind of like Epcot. They have big water rides and a petting zoo section as well. You could say that it’s a fusion of your local zoo with one of the big amusement parks. It’s hard to believe that people would get bored of such a place even though the wow factor was apparently leaving. How I see it, Zoos have remained relevant for decades, a Dinosaur park would at least last 20 years without any big decline in viewership. That being said, Claire may have been overreacting as the numbers still seemed to be quite good when she was mentioning the statistics.

Let’s take this time to quickly talk about Owen and Claire. I haven’t really mentioned Owen up til now, but he did have some solid scenes. I did enjoy his interactions with the Raptors and I like how it was handled. He was their partner, not their boss although he thought of himself as an Alpha. Owen’s essentially your average action hero who has his good moments and his iffy ones. His flirting and dicey remarks keep him from being a good character, but he’s still decent for the most part. It’s easy to root for him at any rate and he certainly knows what he’s doing. He’s another guy who never bows to authority and talks when he feels like it. Imagine if everyone in real life were so bold right? I think the world would be topsy turvy before long.

Claire is a good main heroine for the film and she was actually one of my favorite characters. She didn’t want to have kids which is a noble goal and she has spent her career moving up in the ranks until she became one of the higher ups at the biggest amusement park in the world. That’s no small feat to say the least. Towards the end of the film, she has a bit of a generic ending where you can probably guess that she decides to back away from one part of her logic, but she was still a good character through and through. I thought that she did a decent job watching the kids. Sure, she left that to the assistant, but she gave them VIP passes and they got to have a blast. It’s not like she could take a day off when the big bosses were in town and awaiting her sales pitch after all. I also can’t really imagine her getting on some of the rides and having a blast like the kids. Actually, one of the rides was only built for 2 anyway.

The assistant was actually fairly likable and I originally thought that she was going to be one of the main characters. The actress looked like the main one from Twilight so I thought that I may have just been out of the loop there, but considering her minimal role, I’m going to assume that it was someone else. She definitely didn’t care to be there, but she’s probably seen and been on all of the rides many times over at this point. Still, her facade was good enough to fool the kids I’d say, but they were intent on giving her a tough time right from the start. Her character path goes down a dicey road and I felt bad for the whole time. It just wasn’t her day.

The higher up in charge of the park was decently charismatic. The film was going for a Tony Stark kind of feel for the guy and it worked to an extent. He started to look a little iffy towards the end though, but at least he cared about the dinosaurs a little. As always, there is a human antagonist to liven things up and he is similar to the guy from the first film. He talks tough to everyone and he has his own plans in mind. He gave the film another jolt of humor and I liked him as one of the big bads. This guy certainly wasn’t playing around.

Time to talk about the mystery dino. If you’re seen the trailers, then you know that there is a new Dinosaur hybrid attacking everyone. While she is a little smaller than I had expected, she still packs a punch and makes for a great threat. There are few dinos who can hope to match up to this fighter and she is also very smart. The fact that this dinosaur has been created in a lab gave the writers a little freedom to add some new techniques so this dinosaur doesn’t just need to rely on physical strength. It has two defensive skills, which greatly increase how deadly it can be in a fight. This dinosaur was definitely one of the highlights.

The classics like the T Rex and the Raptor are also present of course and I still love both dinosaurs. Once you see this film, you’ll be reminded why the T Rex is so awesome and how merciless the Raptors can be. It would have been fun to have seen the Spinosaurus enter the fray, but maybe next time. The Raptors get a fairly large role and are integral to the plot. They are still my favorite Dinosaurs out there and I don’t expect that to change anytime soon. They just look so happy and cuddly next to all of the others.

As you might expect, there is a big climactic fight towards the end of the film and it’s quite impressive. It was a fight that I actually called out as I walked into the theater and I was thrilled to see it play out. The fighters gave it their all and we see some nice teamwork as well. The fight isn’t that short either and gives the dinosaurs enough time to really show what they are made of. It’s easily the best fight scene that we’ve gotten in the Jurassic Park franchise and it’s hard to picture this one being topped.

There are some plot elements left around to get you ready for the inevitable sequel. Let’s just say that the next film could have dog sized super dinosaurs running around and it’ll make for a pretty epic clash. Alternately, it could have a plot similar to the original King Kong. Either way, the sequel should be fun and I wonder if the main characters would return or if it would be time for a new cast. I would like these characters to return, but I’m open to change so that we wouldn’t have to see the kids return.

Now, this review sounds decently positive so you may expect something like a 7? A 7 is what the film would have gotten if not for the main negative, but it is something that it almost literally impossible for the Jurassic Park franchise to get away from. That is…animal violence. It’s a dinosaur eat dinosaur world out there so it’s expected and I’m not surprised at the fact that dinosaurs are getting hurt all over the place. It simply makes sense even if it is regrettable. So, while I enjoyed the film as a whole, I’ve still got to cripple the final rating due to how many times an animal is injured and how prevalent this is in the film.

One scene is really just there so that the mini army can get some hype as a gun man casually shoots one of the Pterodactyls. That was just unnecessary and a lot of the other animal scenes aren’t much better. We see dinosaurs blown up, eaten, and effectively drowned. If you’re a dinosaur in this film, then you’re in a whole lot of trouble. A lot of the hurt also comes to my good ole Raptors, which is unfortunate, but probably a price of being one of the main characters. I could go on and on, but you get the drift and it occurs too often to be overlooked so you should prepare for a fairly low score on this one.

Still, it was more fun than the first three Jurassic Park films and certainly seemed to have more fun with itself as well. I’m glad that the Park finally got to open and the film was certainly able to make it look much more authentic than it could have with older effects. This is one of those times where the fact that it’s modern and has some good effects, really helps it. To an extent, I feel like new technology will always help films to have an edge over older ones. The older ones typically hold their own through the better writing, but when you have a good modern film against a good old one, the modern one certainly has that extra edge. Jurassic Park III still wins overall, but the tone and pacing of this film can’t be beat. World feels like a classic Summer Blockbuster.

Hmmm, have I touched on everything? I managed to stay pretty vague on all spoiler related areas and that also slightly limits what I can discuss in the review. The first half was really funny and made this the funniest film in the series and the ending also had the best action scene from all 4 so it was a nice balance. Any scene with the Raptors is typically a good scene as well. As for the soundtrack, you’ll certainly recognize the classic theme from the first film as well as the trailer theme, which plays during one of the scenes. The soundtrack may be a tad generic at points, but the main theme is still iconic and you probably won’t be forgetting it anytime soon. As long as you have one memorable scene, that’s more than most films have got.

While the animal violence is really the only big negative, there are some mild ones as well since this still wouldn’t be a perfect film if the violence was gone. (Although it would be a good-very good one) The kids naturally weren’t good characters, but the rest of the cast helped to nullify them. The writing isn’t great although this is mainly due to Owen and Zach’s characters as the rest are typically fine. There is one scene that will puzzle you a little bit as two security guards seem to have no idea that the Park is in trouble even though the alarms had already gone through a good half hour ago. It struck me as a little odd and random. That’s about it so the film was mostly solid. At around 2 hours, it was a good run time, which gave the film enough time to develop the characters and showcase the dinosaurs.

While Jurassic World is mainly a popcorn film with a lot of epic action and enjoyable moments, it can actually get pretty somber and sad at other moments. One of those moments is the Dinosaur graveyard, which is definitely tragic and one of the more emotional moments of the film. One moment that is supposed to be emotional is when we learn of a divorce, but it has no point in the film and its thrown out so randomly that you probably won’t feel any emotion other than a casual wince. Of course, if you like to have fun with films, then that may be a good thing as I was having fun grinning and wincing for some of the dialogue, but in a good way. On the whole, Jurassic World is still a fairly upbeat film that stays happy for most of its run time as it only gets sad once in a while.

The Pterodactyl attack scene will just get thrown in with the rest of the animal violence issue, but I wonder how some critics will take it. I read a critique of Jurassic Park III that Pterodactyls shouldn’t be strong enough to lift a grown man. Let’s just say that they lift quite a few people during the attack in this one. Is the science/films right or are the real life keyboard warriors correct on this one? I don’t know myself, but it seems perfectly feasible that Pterodactyle could lift humans up since animals are typically so tough. I’m no dinosaur expert though and am happy just being a casual moviegoer.

Overall, I’m definitely glad that I saw this one. If you liked the first three Jurassic Park films, then you should definitely like this one a lot. At the most, you may not like the fact that it’s much more of an action film than the first Jurassic Park, which was a survival film, but it’s still about dinosaurs and it’s still a good film so I believe that you would end up enjoying it. The animal violence is regrettable and it’s something that likely won’t leave the series until they bring in the mecha dinosaurs and I’m ready for that to enter the picture soon. Well, next stop should be good ole Terminator and it’ll be fun to see how that holds up.

Overall 3/10

Live Action Movie Reviews, Live Action Movies, Reviews

Guardians of the Galaxy Review

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Well, Guardians of The Galaxy is definitely a film that everyone has been looking forward to for a very long time. The MCU could finally continue and this installment was going to give us a lot of data for the series. Of course, all of the characters are essentially new to the franchise so it was still a little risky. Guardians of the Galaxy ended up being another solid entry into the MCU and I’m ready for a sequel, but let’s take a more in depth look at it. I aim to keep spoilers to a minimum and will do my best to avoid them entirely, but I recommend watching the film before you read my review…just in case.

The film starts off with a scene on Earth as Star Lord is abducted by aliens when his mother passes away. Years pass and he is now a wanted man by many individuals. He finds a mysterious artifact in a tomb and now he is in a lot of danger. Ronan sends Gamora out to go take the orb from Star Lord while Rocket and Groot want to get the main character for his large bounty. After they bond and fight, the heroes realize that they’re going to have to team up if they want to have any hope of stopping Ronan. Can these individuals team up to face the enemies that no single hero could face alone? Let’s hope so!

Star Lord is the main character of our tale. His character seems to be based off of Captain Kirk’s to an extent. He shares traits with many of the classic heroes, which is likely intentional. He was definitely one of the more interesting characters, but every time he would have a really cool scene that would almost make you a fan, he would do something to negate it. As I mentioned earlier, he shares some traits with Kirk. One of these traits is unfortunately the fact that he flirts a whole lot. His first scene has a rather anticlimatic moment where we realize that he isn’t the only person aboard his ship. The scene really didn’t have a point and it was just so we could see how far Star Lord had fallen.

When he’s not flirting, Star Lord can be a pretty cool character. His mask is pretty epic and he’s a surprisingly good fighter. His plans aren’t bad and he was able to hold his own against Gamora and the others. The fact that he went after his MP3 player at one point was also a pretty cool scene. He typically made sure to do the right thing and he was a solid character for the most part. I just couldn’t like him by the end because the flirting was a little overdone, but he’s still a charismatic lead.

Gamora is an interesting case as well. Her character personality was all right, but I felt that her reputation was undeserved. Everyone seems to know her because of how skilled she is. The problem is that she never looks that tough on screen. Sure, she beats up a few prison guards at one point, but she typically loses the big battles. While she had the upper hand against Drax the first time they met, she never really had any other impressive moments. Her battle against Nebula was good of course, but I don’t see how she fell for the classic thunder rope trick. She also seemed pretty worried the whole time she was in prison. Those were some pretty tough odds, but they mentioned how she had been genetically altered so I figured that the extra power and speed would serve her well.

Personality wise, she’s definitely more heroic than I had figured. I definitely didn’t mind that since it was unexpected in a good way, but it did seem rather sudden. I guess Ronan has never tried to do something this large before or she may have defected sooner. As long as she doesn’t let Star Lord get to her in the sequel, she should stay as a decently good character. I do expect her to look more impressive combat wise in the sequel though. For “the world’s deadliest woman” she only appeared to be slightly stronger than Black Widow. We can expect her DC counterpart (Wonder Woman) to be a little more impressive so Gamora’s going to have to play catch up.

Rocket is a character that Marvel has worked hard to promote. He has a pretty solid fanbase so his portrayal in this film was definitely going to be looked at in detail by his fans. I like Rocket, although I wouldn’t call myself one of his bigger fans. I can see the appeal of the character and I’m always up for another Sgt. Rock. Rocket is shown to be the smartest member of the group and he has a lot of experience. He has broken out of many prisons before and he knows how to take them over from the inside by using Groot.

His drunk scene seemed pretty out of place though and it was a way of expanding his backstory a bit. I could have taken a pass on that part. His backstory is definitely pretty grim, but it should hopefully not appear on screen as the reference is probably all that we need to know about it. It’s definitely hard not to like Rocket from the start. His thunder zap against Star Lord was pretty good and he’s always confident. He’s a little weak physically compared to the others, but he’s always got Groot at his side so he does well in fights. It’s no stretch to say that he’s definitely the best member on the team.
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Drax is probably my least favorite member of the group. It’s close, but I just never cared for this depiction of Drax. Remember the good ole days where he had a cape and his abilities were more on the level of the Hulk or Vision? I don’t know exactly when he changed, but ever since the reboot of his character began…they never looked back. This Drax is more of a generic warrior who likes to fight. You can say that he’s the power member of the group.

The problem is that he’s pretty weak. You can’t compare him to other fighters like Thor or the Hulk. He’s probably around Captain America level in physical power and I would easily take the Avenger to win a fight between them. Drax spends the entire film getting crushed by the opponents. Gamora nearly ends him, Ronan is on a different level, and Korath also throws him around for a while. This is because Drax doesn’t really have any technique to his fighting and he just relies on brute strength. He seems a little out of place in a comic book film.

Power aside, I also don’t really care for his personality. He doesn’t really know a lot about Earth and traditional customs, but we already have Gamora for that angle. (At least music wise) He’s not very smart, but Groot already serves that purpose. Drax really doesn’t add anything to the team and that’s probably another reason why I don’t care for him. I would have preferred Adam Warlock or Captain Marvel to replace this fighter. It helps that he cheered (Rocket is guilty of this too) when the animal got eaten. He could get better in the sequel..but we shall see.

Groot is the final member of the Guardians of The Galaxy and I’m likely not as much of a fan as most of the viewers. Personality-wise, he’s pretty decent. He seems to only partially understand the others or he just doesn’t think about it all that much. At the very least, he has no problem with disrupting the plan and doing things his way. He is pretty heroic for the most part though and he makes the tough calls. I can’t say that I was a big fan of his scene in the prison though. There were other ways in which he could have taken out the tough guy. I just never liked the branches through the nose technique before as I find it rather gruesome.

The main reason why I didn’t care all that much for Groot is the whole “I am Groot” part. It’s essentially like Chewie’s roar in Star Wars. Characters can just understand it somehow and then they put the pieces together. It may be okay once in a while, but the more that it occurs, the more that I don’t really enjoy it. I’d prefer to at least have some subs in this case. Groot is definitely a lot more durable than the other Guardians though and he would likely win in a fist fight.

Thanos finally gets to show himself in this film. Viewers of the Avengers series who prefer not to watch any of the other installments will likely be upset since they are expecting him to get a big role in Avengers II. This wasn’t to be and we can only hope that Thanos does join us for Avengers III. All signs point to it at the moment at least, but you could almost think that Thanos would be the big villain for Guardians 2.

His design seems to be a little different from the Avengers film, but it’s a little hard to tell since the lighting is pretty dark. His outfit is modeled after the comics, but all of the color has been drained from it. It reminds me of Wonder Woman’s new costume in the Batman vs Superman film coming out. (Color scheme wise) The outfit is bronze/gold and there isn’t any color to it. It definitely looks menacing though and Thanos essentially looks like a purple Hulk with armor. I don’t really have any complaints about the armor’s design. I definitely would have preferred the classic gold and blue, but this works.

Character wise, Thanos and Ronan have some banter as threats are implied and spoken outright. Nebula tells Ronan that Thanos is stronger than him, which is a solid continuation of the hype train for Thanos. I’m all aboard of course, but making Thanos stronger than Ronan isn’t very impressive. It’s a start of course, but this is why we’re waiting for his first actual fight. He reminds me of Darkseid and his throne is pretty good. Whether he has his first fight in a Guardians or Avengers film, it should be pretty epic.

Ronan is the main villain of the Guardians film. He’s a decent villain, although I would say that he’s not quite as tough as he could have been thanks to the film’s main characters. Since none of the heroes are very strong, they had to be careful about him. I would say that Ronan’s strength could be comparable to Iron Man’s armor if not a little stronger than that. Due to some circumstances in the film, his abilities do get better at one point and his weapon becomes truly devastating. It reminded me of Malekith in Thor: The Dark World. Once amped up, he could probably give Thor or the Hulk a pretty good run for their money.
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Character wise, I found him to be very similar to Malekith. Ronan’s main goal is to destroy various civilizations and one in particular because he doesn’t believe in the peace treaty. He’s not with the Kree in this continuity as he commands a rebel force and he works with Thanos. He could be a little generic and executing defenseless civilians is a little petty. I’d say that he didn’t leave much of a lasting impression and he was a decent villain by the end. That’s still an improvement over most of the MCU villains though. I would have liked to see him go up against Thanos, but it wasn’t meant to be.

Nebula doesn’t get much of a role in this film, but she is regarded as a tough fighter. She has a brief fight with Gamora and we don’t really know much else about her. Her design is good and I’m always open to cyborgs. She seems to comprehend Thanos’ power more than the others and she naturally resents him. What she will do next will likely impact the plot of the sequel a lot. She makes for a good rival to Gamora and I don’t have much else to say about her just yet.

Yondu is pretty different from the comics, but it works for the film. He’s a lot older than you may have guessed and unlike Hawkeye, he only uses one arrow. It’s the whole quantity vs quality debate and his arrow is definitely well built. It’s like a laser and it’s sound based, which is pretty good. Yondu is definitely a threat and he could likely take out the Guardians of The Galaxy with decent ease. He would likely have some trouble against opponents with sound abilities or quick reflexes, but his arrow is quite fast so the reflexes would have to be on a high level. He’s not a very interesting villain though and his power is his saving grace. I don’t mind all that much if he appears in the sequel, but they have to be careful about how he fights. This ability leaves a lot of room for plot convenience and we don’t want that. Having someone give him an accurate fight will be a challenge, but a fun one to see on screen.

Korath gets a minor role in this film as well and he only gets one real fight scene against Drax. He looks a little stronger than you may have guessed, but the film did hint at it when he recovered from Star Lord’s thunder blast so quickly. He’s really just a nameless minion in the end in terms of plot importance. His design isn’t very interesting and he’s basically a throwaway character. I can’t say that I mind him all that much, but he’s definitely not going to be the next big threat.

I can’t say that I like the Collector anymore here than I did in Thor: The Dark World. He’s still a complete villain and I don’t understand why the Asgardians trust him. He’s useful for information, but the heroes should have shut down his base of operations a long time ago. You feel bad for his minions and things definitely get a little dicey for them. Hopefully this will be his last appearance in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. There’s really no need for him to appear any further anyway.

The Other makes his glorious return into the Marvel universe with this film. I have to say that I had only been mildly been expecting him to get a decent role here so that was pretty cool. Once again, he talks pretty tough to Ronan and I like how he’s always on top of things. The Other fears no being! (Not even Thanos…..) Apparently, he knew about some plans and schemes, but neglected to tell Ronan because The Other is a Boss. We don’t get to see any of his super speed in this film though so I have to wonder if it was forgotten or if the Other just couldn’t be bothered to use it. I’m hoping that he gets another solid role in the future where he can show off his abilities to their fullest.

Guardians of the Galaxy is definitely a very important film for the MCU. We learn a lot of things about the cosmic order in this continuity and Thanos appearing is certainly important as well. Everything is a lot more casual in the film to the point where you feel bad for S.H.I.E.L.D. Nobody on Earth even knows about Thanos, but it’s casual knowledge in this film. We get to see his domain and many planets fear him. It’s hard to describe, but it definitely makes the Guardians appear to be on a different level from the Avengers knowledge wise even if they can’t compete in power.

We even learned about the Celestials and we get a really cool action scene involving a planet blowing up. I’ve always wanted to see a planet blow up on screen and this film got to show us this. That’s a visual that I expect to see in future DBZ films and I guess this film beat it to the punch. Skipping this film isn’t a wise move if you want to stay in touch with what is happening in the world.

The fight scenes in the film are definitely some of the better ones in the MCU. We’re not looking at anything like Thor vs Kurse or Captain America vs Winter Soldier yet, but the space fights are really fun. Star Lord’s blaster is pretty effective and we haven’t gotten a lot of gun fights in the series prior to this film. Definitely no space blasters and I was glad to see them appear. I wouldn’t have minded if everyone used guns in the film since the effects made the blaster fights really stand out.

A welcome positive for this film is the light tone that is similar to the Avengers. The film typically has a scene intended to make you laugh every few minutes and the humor is pretty well done. The film doesn’t take itself too seriously and that’s a good thing. It helped to minimize the damage in a negative that is coming up and it also gives the film a lot more replay value than other films that came out this year. (TMNT, Godzilla, Dawn of the Planet of The Apes, Xmen, etc.) It would certainly be a lot easier to watch this film again than any of those.

The light tone is really what helped the film not get hurt too badly by the animal violence. The animal violence guaranteed that I wouldn’t give this film an 8 like Captain America. It wasn’t very bad, but there was one pretty sad scene at the bar. We see an animal eating another one and it’s done for sport. The characters actually don’t mind this and they encourage the barbaric game. There’s also the scene at the very beginning of the film where Star Lord is beating up on a lot of small lizards. That was pretty sad to see since it was completely unnecessary to the plot. We definitely don’t need animal violence in our films and hopefully this doesn’t become more of a trend with Marvel. (I still won’t forget the dog scene in The Incredible Hulk)

I will say that the film did have a little more language than the average MCU film. Mostly, it tended to come from Rocket, but they all chipped in a little. Luckily, we don’t get the line that offers the big word. It’s mostly just a lot of s and a worlds, but they do add up a little more than usual. It was likely to show that these guys were definitely not as heroic as the Avengers, but we already knew that from Star Lord.

Finally, I think the film tried a little too hard to be emotional at some points. “You’re asking us to die” quickly comes to mind as everyone gets serious and it’s a solemn moment. It’s almost inevitable for a film and especially one that is as happy as this one. After all, the heroes have to finally realize the gravity of the situation at some point, which will make things serious. It’s a cost of being a light series, but it’s a light one. The opening scene at the hospital was also pretty sad, but it really didn’t do the film any favors. Why not give the hero a happy origin story instead? What makes the origin a little sadder than usual is the fact that they made sure it was a realistic origin that could happen to anyone before the UFO came. Taking away that scene and one or two others would have allowed the film to keep it’s happy stride and to never look back. I think that would have made the film even better.
The soundtrack for the film is definitely solid. I’ve always been a fan of the classic songs from the 1980’s and beyond. It was a good time to be a listener and they just don’t make songs like they used too. We got a whole bunch of classic songs in the film and I was glad to see that I recognized two of them. The main theme that was seen in all of the trailers and on Star Lord’s MP3 player is easily the best song. Most of the others are pretty solid as well, but that one definitely had what it takes. The tune that Star Lord listens to in the very beginning was pretty good as well.

Naturally, we get an after credits scene in the film. There is a small sort of bonus scene early on, but I barely count it since nothing really happens. The actual after credits scene is another comedy clip so it’s not there to advance the plot, but it is a pretty good one. The novelty of the scene is the best part and while I would have preferred a Thanos vs Ultron fight to set up Avengers 2, this will have to do for now. You should hopefully recognize what the after credits scene means…hopefully.

Now, this film is Disney like Star Wars and it’s the first big space epic in a while. After the similar poster came out, I’m sure that we all quickly thought of Star Wars. It’s definitely worth mentioning that they do have a lot of similarities. We get adaptions/homages/similar circumstances to the Dark Vader and Lord Palpatine plot through Thanos and Ronan. We get a space fight scene where a lot of small ships go for the large one like in Star Wars. Groot is pretty similar to Chewbacca and Star Lord’s relationship to Yondu is identical to Han Solo’s time with Jabba The Hut. Gamora and the main heroine of Star Wars also have some mild similarities as they already had a mission and then the other heroes jump in and wreck her plans while attempting to help. There are other similarities and some of these are naturally coincidences since it’s hard not to adapt them when doing a sci-fi film. It definitely had a Star Wars feel to it though and that’s pretty nice. Star Wars definitely had a lot of good things going for it even if it started to make some mistakes down the road.
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Overall, I definitely recommend checking out Guardians of The Galaxy. I love superhero team films because watching the team form is always great. The opening fight scene with the members is pretty great and I definitely place that as my favorite scene. The film is pretty fun to watch and the action scenes are great as well. The film did have some negatives for me, but there aren’t any scenes where you’ll seriously grimace except for the animal violence. This installment can definitely hold its own against the other titles and I’m looking forward to the sequel. We’ll see if Thanos really is one of the major players to face them. Either way, expect a lot of action and excitement along with some more great tunes.

Overall 7/10