by Rob Smat
Just when we didn’t think Marvel could do any better, they shock us yet again. Besides the witty banter, the complex characters, and the family friendly story, the pure scale of this film is beyond anything they’ve given us yet. And according to multiple title cards, most of the film was “approved for ALL AUDIENCES by the Motion Picture Association of America.”
Featuring the likes of Academy Award™ Winning actors such as Matthew McConaughey, Meryl Streep, and Christian Bale, Guardians’ opening sequence is fraught with science fiction, adventure, and even musical fantasy.
In the first 45 minutes alone, there were the most cameos since It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963).
Gunn’s style of direction is evident in the way he ties together characters from seemingly opposite worlds: a farmer turned astronaut, a witch in a forest of fantasy, a divisive figure of Biblical proportions; the list goes on and on. The characters are dynamic, yet they only appear in vignettes measuring 2 to 3 minutes in length, with fades to black interspersed throughout and repeated approvals from the MPAA.
The opening sequence climaxes with the surprising appearance of a large dragon soaring through the air, destroying a small town built upon a lake, as if Stellar adventures, Big Heroes, and journeys Into Woods weren’t gripping enough already.
After about an hour, Star-Lord makes his appearance and begins the main arc of the film, also a strong story, barely falling short of the breadth of its opening sequence. I was impressed that the theater dimmed the lights at this point, making the main arc even more immersive.
The characters introduced in the opening sequence do not appear again in the film; however, if there’s anything we’ve learned from Marvel, it’s that no profitable character is ever truly retired from the silver screen.
- Director: A very, very wealthy man
- Runtime: 205 min.
- Rated PG-13 for one interrupted F-bomb
- The Sack’s Score: Five buckets of popcorn
(There is no after-credits stinger in this article.)