Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 – REVIEW

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Chocoholics went berserk about the first Guardians of the Galaxy film if only because it wasn’t about their favourite chocolate. Fans will know what to expect in this second dose of superhero’s saving Universes in this next ’volume’ set to a mix tape of classic 70’s hits. Starting with a brief few scenes with a magically de-aged Kurt Russell the film fast forwards our gang of misfits in an space monster enormous which initially is ignored and reduced to the back ground as the now Baby Groot dances away to ELO’s Mr Blue Sky. It’s one of the high lights of the films just watching, what is admittedly, a computer generated character bopping away and whose enjoyment at the music is infectious before the scene reverts back to the monster battle and it’s from here on that the characters are propelled into a further battle in a breathlessly exciting sequence as the gang are pursued due to some minor wrong doing by Rocket Racoon who is even more irascible than the last film. It’s the Bradley Cooper voiced character who is one of two leads who gets many of the good lines though here he’s often the butt of much verbal abuse from many of the others with some hilarious insults and windups.

Vin Diesel, voices Baby Groot and is frankly unrecognisable in the 3 words he reiterates in what must have been less than  an hour’s work in the sound studio but with the Fast & Furious franchise’s obsession with ‘family’ seemingly now permeated the Guardians films as the  misfits grow ever more aware that they only have each other and the story here centres on Chris Pratt’s StarLord discovery of his father played by  a twinkly eyed and bouffant haired Kurt Russell which supplies the crux of the plot of the film and is the only really nuanced moments amongst the explosions and CGI spacescapes. Whilst Michael Rooker as Yondu who kidnapped Star Lord as a child effectively becoming his surrogate father finds his own emotional ties to his adopted son plucking at the heart strings and tearing his loyalties between him and his rabble rousing crew of degenrates . The family theme extends to Karen Gillan and Zoe Saldana as squabbling  sisters as well as Racoon’s brotherly love keeping a look out for Baby Groot.

As written by James Gunn this is funnier than the first film with, if anything, Chris Pratt playing the straight man to the others and its Dave Bautista’s Drax who gets many of the funniest lines by far revelling in the danger they find themselves in and whose only competition is from Baby Groot who endlessly elicted ‘ahhhs’ from the audience we saw it with. As one actor says they can’t kill Groot because he’s,’ too adorable’.

Volume 2 has more of the same plot  with the usual cameo from Stan Lee and one split second cameo which is another laugh out loud moment. It’s perhaps too long at well over 2 hours and sets up several of the characters for an already announced Volume 3 most notably Sylvester Stallone who appears to be set for bigger things and there is an ending that will have fans unexpectedly moved to possible tears……and yes there are several end credit scenes only one of which seems to be relevant to the plot going forward but these are scattered right through to the very final credit. Whilst not as good as the first film this is still a great bundle of electric coloured fun.

See the stars at the European premiere here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ammb1mkhF1E

Here’s the trailer…….

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