Guardians of the Galaxy: The Interstellar Comedy of the Summer


Tresa Rentler, Staff Reporter

With the buzz of Days of Future Past  and Captain America: The Winter Soldier dying down, Guardians of the Galaxy has become the next great hit in Marvel’s rapidly released line of films. Raking in a staggering $93.4 million its opening weekend, Guardians has become one of the studio’s highest ranking projects, as well as one of it’s first successful comedies. In fact, it is this film’s acting, tone and overall comedic vibe that separate it from Marvel Studios’ other projects.

Let’s start with the story: a rag-tag team of space travelers must set out to stop an evil overlord from taking over the galaxy; a typical space-action film synopsis. Unlike The Avengers or X-Men, our heroeshave neither great power nor great responsibility. Jokes are shared bet

ween characters, and their goals are simple and clear. There are no real twists or overarching conflicts amongst the characters. This standard, no-risk plot allows for elements of comedy and characterization to blossom.

Chris Pratt, who has been known to play the lovable goofball in both The Lego Movie and NBC’s Parks and Recreation, now plays the strapping young hero who saves the galaxy, so you can imagine how that went. I never would’ve pegged Pratt for a serious hero lead role, and thankfully he doesn’t deliver. Pratt’s lightheartedness shines through and adds a great touch of comedy to the film. Bradley Cooper shows off his voice acting skills with the computer generated raccoon, Rocket, which genuinely surprised me, considering I came into the theater not knowing that Cooper was behind it. Vin Diesel voices the anthropomorphic tree, Groot, and I never in my life expected a Vin Diesel character to make me cry. With Avatar’s Zoe Saldana and Doctor Who’s  Karen Gillan as headstrong, colorful-skinned alien warriors, this cast will satisfy comedy, action and sci-fi fans everywhere.

The scale and graphics follows the classic Disney/Marvel superhero format of impossibly amazing CGI that makes the film seem gigantic, while the 1970’s rock n’ roll soundtrack makes the galactic adventure seem more like a road trip, again adding to the overall laid-back feel. The Disney/Marvel format also shines through as Guardians takes a classic comic book tale and turns it into an epic adventure of huge proportions. So in some aspects, it was not completely atypical to Marvel’s line up.

And then there’s the big question. Was this film better than the Avengers or X-Men? No, not exactly, but it wasn’t trying to be. Marvel Studios understood that this film did not have to be as intense or have a better story than their other two enormous franchises. It allowed them more artistic liberties like a fun soundtrack and a more comedic script. Rumors of a sequel have already started buzzing, and as long as they keep the same tone as the original, I’d gladly check them out. Guardians does not take itself seriously, and that’s honestly the beauty of it. It will certainly hold me over until the next Marvel installment, and it’s a must-see for any comic book and science fiction fan. Make sure you see it before the end of the summer!