Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 review: Still so much fun

GotG Vol 2 review
©Marvel Studios

The gang is back! Peter Quill a.k.a. Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), his kinda-sorta paramour Gamora (Zoe Saldana), the tragic Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), Rocket (Bradley Cooper) and now Baby Groot (Vin Diesel) are all here again for another intergalactic adventure, joined by Star-Lord’s old mate Yondu (Michael Rooker).

This time round, the Guardians are confronted with Quill’s true parentage in the shape of his father Ego (80s icon Kurt Russell), a mysterious cosmic being who knows more than he’s letting on. Meanwhile, Nebula (Karen Gillan) wants to murder her sister Gamora, while alien race The Sovereign are after the Guardians, all thanks to Rocket…

Despite some early reviews saying that the sequel has lost a bit of the magic of the first movie, we’re happy to report that, as far as Geek Crusade is concerned, this isn’t the case. All the things that made Guardians of the Galaxy special are still there: The easy chemistry between the cast, the laugh-out-loud banter (look out for the scene where Yondu tries to get Groot to fetch something vital) and the quirky, endearing characters.

GotG Vol 2 review
“Have you ever watched Escape From LA, son?” ©Marvel Studios

We had quite a few questions about GotG Vol 2, all of which the sequel answers. The CGI here is phenomenal, while Russell is invaluable to the narrative. Like Anthony Hopkins’ Odin and Robert Redford’s Alexander Pierce, the presence of such an accomplished actor brings a real gravitas to the story. But let’s not forget the all-singing, all-dancing Baby Groot, who is sure to be a fan favourite.

It’s all amplified by a wonderful soundtrack that is a nostalgic retread of the 1970s and 80s, from “Brandy You’re A Fine Girl” by Looking Glass to George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord” to Cat Stevens’ “Father And Son”. Director James Gunn has done a masterful job of integrating the music into the movie, and there are few as good as him. Now that he’s returning for the third GotG movie, can he make it a hat trick of great movies?

As with almost all Marvel movies, the villain is somewhat predictable, even if he (it?) is one of the better Marvel baddies (we can’t say any more or we’ll spoiler you). And while GotG Vol. 2 has a strong emotional core, the notes it tries to hit are a tad contrived. The whole I-behave-this-way-because-I-have-secret-pain-inside routine wears thin after a while, especially when it’s repeated between different sets of characters.

There are quite a few celebrity cameos to look out for, from Sylvester Stallone (another 80s icon) to Michelle Yeoh to (of course) Stan Lee, not to mention the delightful appearance of ANOTHER 80s icon. Don’t forget to stay on after the movie too for the FIVE post-credits scenes, including one vital reveal of a certain cosmic character.

Guardians of the Galaxy opens in Singapore and in IMAX tomorrow. Tell us what you think of the movie!