By Gabrio Re (Milan, Italy)

 

Honestly Marvel movies are extremely overrated. They’re often keeping up with all sorts of action-comic relief-distractions to entertain people, which they do – but the more I look at them, the less I see.

But that’s not the case with Guardians of the Galaxy, at all. With such a well-established plot, clearly a full circle, all relationships led to a desirable and unregressable (unless with a loss) state, you would expect the Second Volume of the series to be… pretty boring. At least it should fade out, come on, like movies who didn’t really plan their sequels, they were just trying to keep the flame alive. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 proves exactly how a movie can turn a clear rainbow ending into a stormy night beginning. The good thing about it, or at least, what I think makes it better than other Marvel stories, is development.

The last antagonist was defeated, but they make a new one, while we get to discover the story behind the main character from the previous volume, which makes this the continuing of that story, not taking any importance from it as with a secondary lesser-important event that comes after the peak of the Guardians’ lives. It makes the film centrally interesting, and at the same time, we get another antagonist, which conflicts and intersects with the others’ already established, just like we had several different people chasing the Guardians in the first chapter. The Guardians of the Galaxy are a perfect example of how to build intriguing plot structures, which could be used in any kind of tale, but here are enhanced by the cool, exciting and atmospheric science-fiction universe.

Main characters’ development was already quite well established in the first one, but in here we see a different side of Gamora, for we only left her at the very beginning of her new-found relationship with Quill, and we get to see that more thoroughly now, but especially, we dig deeper into more of Rocket’s relational issues with others and himself, which is just something that leads us through the path: the movies keeps jumping so dynamically between all these different plot elements, while building a complexive climax all the way towards the end, where it all resolves, giving us at the same time the cues for a possibly even better sequel to come, because now there are clearly very strong and important questions left open, much more than at the end of the first one (“The Guardians of the Galaxy will return”), and it unravels all these intricate, interrelated stories together with all those stunning visuals, beautiful choreographic scenes, exquisite and really striking humour, just like the first one.

The very most important aspect is the reprise of Quill-Yondu’s relationship, which seemed to have been settled as a precariously stable but quite totally defined before we got this movie. Instead we take it and flip it apart, and really, really get to the very end of it, this time, with the aid of gorgeous plot constructions that, sincerely, were masterfully crafted and dispersed in this timeline, that gets us, by the end, with a very different situations which we almost couldn’t see change. I would give 5 points out of 5 as a vote to only a handful of films that got out in the last years, and the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, one of the greatest Marvel movies so far (together with “Vol. 1”), probably the greatest sci-fi movie sequel (after Star Wars at least) ever, totally deserves it. Something I haven’t seen in a while. In fact I’ve probably never seen a movie so great in this action sci-fi comedy genre: “because there are none of them”, you will say (well, maybe MIB, but it’s not so… colorful)! But exactly for that: this movie is unique in its genre, a genre so easy to watch.

In conclusion, I wanted to make clear that I’m not saying this is better than the first Guardians of the Galaxy: I think it’s worse. Exactly because the plot was more fundamental to all the characters’ lives, they were all still developing, they got together from being separate, which also made them more vulnerable then they look like after the established title of “guardians of the galaxy”, and the last scene making them superheroes at all effects (at least Star-Lord). Also, to be completely honest, the planet-villain plot for the whole second half of it looks very monotone to me, which you may never even notice if you watch it only once, but it’s easier to notice the repetitivity of it after multiple screenings.

That’s the main fault in the whole movie in my opinion; right after it, the transformation of Drax from a stolid, strong, yet vulnerable (and also with a halo of mystery around him) lonely Destroyer, to a very funny, but he was before as well, now more playful and who seems to have lost completely the emotions he was carrying for a careless pit of humour. In the end he lost a lot even from the very first scene, where we still see him as hazardous, fearless and proudly acting.

Marvelous job.

Rating: 5/5

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