Benjamin Wollmuth is a lover of literature who enjoys sharing his thoughts on everything from movies and video games to books and music.
Let's be real here: this film had a lot of hype before it released back in 2017. Guardians of the Galaxy quickly became one of the best films in the MCU upon its release, but if you would like to see my thoughts on that movie, you can check out my review for it (link is at the end of this article). Fans were eager to see where Gunn would bring the characters next and how much bigger the movie would be compared to the first. While the sequel film isn't better than Vol. 1 (in my opinion), it still manages to expand on the characters we grew to love during Vol. 1 and create an entertaining story that made me both laugh and cry.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 had the task of continuing with the characters from where they left off in the first film. The sequel takes place only four months (or so) after the first, which means the Guardians are still fairly new to, well, guarding. This is great for the audience, for we as the watchers are able to see just how long it takes for this family to finally click together. In every sense, this is a film about family. The Guardians are a family. Peter meets his actual father––his actual family. This story is all about what makes a family. You may be linked to your actual family through blood and DNA, but real family is who are there for you when you need them––real family sticks together. That is the beauty of this team and where they fall in the MCU chronology. Before the two Guardians films, we got The Avengers, which was the start of a family. However, the Avengers don't fully click during the first movie, so the Guardians are the first actual team we see truly come together as a family. Just like in the first film, the Guardians have to work around their different personalities––Drax being constantly literal and Rocket being kind of an asshole, just to name a few––in order to truly bond themselves together. While their personalities don't necessarily change, they have come to an understanding of what everyone is like. They are still misfits, but they have worked hard enough and bonded enough to be a powerful group of misfits that care about each other. They have learned how to handle each other.
In my personal opinion, watching the two films back-to-back is a must in order to see just how amazing the flow between each film is. Yes, there is a small time jump. However, since the team still has a lot of growing to do even after the four months we don't see, it works. I mentioned in my review for Guardians of the Galaxy how the film, to me, works best as a character piece. The action is just background––the true plot revolves around the growth of this team of misfits. I can gladly say the same about the second film. Yes, there are big action scenes that look great and are fun to watch. However, in the case of this film, the front-and-center conflict is between family––Peter and Ego, Peter and Yondu, Yondu and Rocket, Drax and Mantis, and Gamora and Nebula. This familial conflict works so well because Gunn established the characters so well. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2., just like Vol. 1, is indeed a character piece. And I love it.
How can I talk about a Marvel movie without talking about the villain, or in this case, villains?
Let's get the secondary villain out of the way first. The Sovereign are alright, but that's why they are secondary. They aren't given as much screentime because they aren't primary. Duh. Therefore, they don't bother me too much.
The primary villain, Ego, is played by Kurt Russell, and I must say that Russell does a great job of being a loving father when he needs to be and a menacing villain when he needs to be. Going into the film for the first time, I knew he was the big bad. However, I did start to like him for a time. I feel like a group of non-superpowered heroes were able to destroy a celestial pretty easily, but I guess Quill did have some cosmic powers for a little bit, so I will let it slide. In terms of motivation (which is something I always talk about), I would say his is pretty solid. He's a god, essentially, and has the power to expand, so he is doing it. As a human, I could not possibly understand what that feels like. So, I will give Ego the benefit of the doubt and say that his motivation is pretty straightforward.
Overall, Ego is pretty menacing, but definitely not my favorite villain of the MCU. He could possibly end up in a top ten list if I decide to do one.
I know I really only talked about family and the villains, but hey, I really love the idea of family that this film focuses on and the villain can either make or break a film. But, I will say these three last things:
1. The film was fricken hilarious.
2. The soundtrack was once again fantastic.
3. The visuals were beautiful.
There. I have gotten all my points across.
I do think that Guardians of the Galaxy is a better film, but I still love the sequel, even after watching it for the nth time. I laughed hard and I cried when Yondu died. It honestly made me greatly appreciate Marvel for rehiring James Gunn for Vol. 3. Now, that is a film I am excited for (whenever it decides to come out).
With all of that being said, I am going to give Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 a 9/10.
Next up, we travel back to Earth to watch The Avengers beat up an army of robots. I hope to see you there.
Check out my review for "Guardians of the Galaxy"!
- 'Guardians of the Galaxy' - Infinity Saga Chronological Reviews
This is a review for Marvel Studios' "Guardians of the Galaxy." This review contains spoilers for the film as well as for the MCU as a whole.
© 2020 Benjamin Wollmuth
Izicomics on June 16, 2020:
Being a fan of Marvel I must say that I quite agree with your post, and although both films omit one or another event that I have read in the comics on my favorite page https://www.izicomics.com
I still have to say that it is a good adaptation for all those people who do not know the world of the ninth art