Sunday, December 7, 2014

Video review: "Guardians of the Galaxy"

Back when “Guardians of the Galaxy” came out, I praised it highly but fretted that audiences wouldn’t come out for yet another comic book adaptation based on characters most of them had never heard of.

Silly me. Now the top-grossing film of the year, “Guardians” obviously didn’t need any sympathy.

What a dizzy, daffy antidote to a summer of largely dreary flicks. Here for the first time was a super-hero movie that was a flat-out comedy. That whole thing with glum caped crusaders kvetching about “with great power comes great responsibility” had gotten kinda old. Here’s a quintet who love doing what they do, no apologies, and plenty of humor along the way.

Rather than being inveterate do-gooders, these Guardians are a motley crew of thieves and killers who get thrown together while greedily pursuing the same mysterious space orb. They are:
  • Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), a smirky, quip-throwing human with cool gadgets;
  • Gamaro (Zoe Saldana), a green-skinned assassin and turncoat;
  • Rocket (voice by Bradley Cooper), a spirited raccoon engineer;
  • Groot (voice by Vin Diesel), Rocket’s 9-foot-tall tree-like companion;
  • Drax (Dave Bautista), a burly red guy with revenge on his mind.
The plot is a little hard to follow, but something to do with a powerful rebel Ronan (Lee Pace) who wants to throw off the yoke of his master, Thanos, an evil space emperor. Ronan and his fellow Kree want to destroy the Nova, a benevolent race guarding the orb.

The action is zingy, the villains (there are many) quite hiss-able and the belly laughs plentiful. I doubt “Guardians of the Galaxy” will need my boosterism for its video release.

Video features are good, not great, and feel a bit underwhelming considering the success of the film. The DVD comes with but a single feature, and it’s more of an ad: an exclusive look at “Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron.”

Upgrade to the Blu-ray combo pack and you add a feature-length audio commentary track, deleted scenes, gag reel and making-of featurettes.



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