Guardians of the Galaxy
Directed by James Gunn
Starring Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista and Dijimon Hounsou
It is the 1970s. Peter Quill is about to become an orphan. His mother takes her last breath, while there has never been any trace of his father. Peter leaves the hospital convinced of having to grow up on his own when a UFO scoops him up and takes him away.
Now we meet him again as a man in a faraway world. After having grown up on a ship of outlaws he has become a thief himself. This is precisely what catapults him into a story that is even more than he can handle: the precious sphere that he stole from his own companions is really an object of desire of evil villain, Ronan, who wants to destroy the universe. In order to escape, Quill must form an unlikely alliance with four absurd characters: Rocket, a talking and bloodthirsty raccoon who deep down is kind-hearted; Groot, a tree humanoid who is only able to say one sentence; Gamora, who is tied to Ronan and for this reason is ready to do anything to stop him; and Drax the Destroyer, who wants revenge for his family who was exterminated by Ronan. Although Quill accepts these strange companions out of convenience at first, once he discovers the powers of the sphere— which is capable of destroying all things— he agrees to transform himself into a hero and to become guardian of the Galaxy.
The Guardians of the Galaxy made their debut as superheroes in Volume II of “Super Heroes” in January 1969. Gene Colan pencils in their shape, while Arnold Drake writes the lyrics. Their publisher, of course, is Marvel Comics. It is precisely Marvel’s involvement in the work that, nearly fifty years later, guarantees their film debut.
In fact, Marvel has expanded its range of action over the past few years, no longer settling for ceding the rights to use their works, but producing the works directly. Thus, through the success of their most famous superhero movies, Marvel has opened its archives.
The film’s greatest risk is that it may appear to be a completely commercial operation. However, this is not the case. Even without great ambitions, Guardians of the Galaxy has undeniable originality and charm.
The movie’s parable is clear: a group of losers end up not only saving the earth, but saving the entire galaxy. Even the references are obvious: the most obvious is Star Wars. In fact, there is a clear analogy between Han Solo and Star Lord, whose nickname Quill assigns to himself. Both are marginalized characters called to save the world. As Hans Solo had the help of Chewbacca, a kind of Yeti, Star Lord receives the assistance of a raccoon and a tree.
Yet, the movie’s real merit comes from its irony. Of course there are chases, fights, and space battles. However, the movie never takes itself too seriously, not even in its most dramatic moments. The two main scenes are courageous in this regard: in the romantic scene, in which Peter tells Gamora about the mythology of Footloose (a film by Kevin Bacon), as well as the action scene.
In fact, the final battle is not resolved with amazing special effects, but with an improvised and dilapidated dance number. In short, the film is a pleasant work of entertainment that already gives a foretaste of the chapters to come.
This film is suitable for all audiences.
Andrea Valagussa is an Italian screenwriter , a graduate of the Catholic University of Milan, where he now works as a tutor and lecturer.