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Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2

%E2%80%9CGuardians+of+the+Galaxy+Vol.+2%E2%80%9D+is+a+visually+impressive+sequel%2C+but+it+suffers+somewhat+from+predictable+plot+and+repetitive+gags.+%0ARate%3A+3.5%2F5
“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” is a visually impressive sequel, but it suffers somewhat from predictable plot and repetitive gags. 
Rate: 3.5/5

“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” is a visually impressive sequel, but it suffers somewhat from predictable plot and repetitive gags. Rate: 3.5/5

Credit: Credit: Courtesy of Marvel Studios

Credit: Credit: Courtesy of Marvel Studios

“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” is a visually impressive sequel, but it suffers somewhat from predictable plot and repetitive gags. Rate: 3.5/5

Matt Karle

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James Gunn’s second installment to his successful “Guardians of the Galaxy” franchise falls somewhat short of its predecessor’s unique charm, but through its impressive effects, entertaining action sequences and light-hearted sense of humor, it still provides a fun film for audiences looking for two hours of mindless entertainment.

The film opens with a hectic bang in its credit sequence, reintroducing its characters with a backdrop of a chaotic fight scene akin to those typically found at the conclusions of films of the genre. The potential for dark and bloody combat takes the backseat as the camera focuses instead on Baby Groot, who maintains a lighthearted comedic tone through the scene that matches the jovial sounds of Electric Light Orchestra’s “Mr. Blue Sky.” The scene sets up the rest of the film’s somewhat shallow plot as Rocket incurs the wrath of the technologically advanced Sovereign race by stealing the very goods they had been hired to protect. However, the rest of the movie does not quite manage to recreate the splendors of its introduction as it dives clumsily into its clichéd theme of family, and that is what ultimately holds it back from being an outstanding sequel.

While escaping the clutches of the Sovereign, the Guardians fall victim to their own infighting, but are saved by Ego. He is quickly revealed to be protagonist Peter Quill’s long-lost biological father. With the group separated, Gunn makes use of a series of eye-catching expositions and serious scenes to demonstrate the conflict that forms as Quill is increasingly forced to choose between his biological family and the family he has formed with his fellow Guardians of the Galaxy.

This sort of familial conflict has been most notably found in the “Fast and Furious” franchise, whose eighth installment was released less than a month prior, so Gunn is certainly not delving into any new intellectual territory here. However, he makes fairly good work of it by exploring the familial conflicts present in the established backgrounds of many characters to produce a resolution that certainly isn’t particularly surprising, but is meaningful in its own way.

“Guardians Vol. 2” struggles with its predictability. The ending is all too similar to that of its predecessor: a new and unexpected power harnessed by Quill, a near-death experience and a sacrifice by a lovable side character. Even the jokes begin to grow stale; Gunn is content to repeatedly capitalize on Groot’s inanity and Drax’s gruff naivete and boisterous laugh. Yet this predictability makes sense by the very nature of the film. Films in this vein are frequently criticized for their lack of depth, but when viewing a comic-book action movie, one shouldn’t be hoping for the pinnacle of art, for that’s not what it intends to deliver. Movies of this nature should be fun before the rest, and if the studio can produce a masterpiece of a film as well, that’s great too. So when viewing “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” be prepared to turn off your brain, enjoy the visuals and the action, and ignore the fact that you’ll probably know exactly what comes in the end, because if you do, you’ll enjoy the ride.

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Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2