Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is a worthy sequel to the first one. Not by any means flawless, but a lot of fun. The story is solidly enjoyable, with no major plot holes (that I noticed), though it was predictable. A few details surprised me, but major plot points were exactly what you’d expect them to be, and were telegraphed from a mile away, in case you missed the predictable-ness.
The casting for the film was fantastic, and all the actors/actresses (including those portraying CG characters) did a great job bringing their characters to life. Some of the character development was, like the story, too predictable, but for the most part, this is an area where Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 really shone.
I particularly enjoyed Kurt Russell as Ego and the folks playing Sovereigns as pretty much everything you loved/hated about the popular kids in high school—times 10 and spray-painted gold. And Baby Groot is completely adorable and believable. In an overall-very-good show, he steals it again and again.
Which might be part of why a couple of scenes bothered me so much (besides the fact that IRL I have a toddler and an infant). There’s one scene, after a mutiny, in which the mutineers are tormenting—bordering on flat-out torturing—Baby Groot. I know, I know, it’s fiction, but I was sitting in my seat, crying angry tears and thinking, “You MONSTERS! How can you do that to a BABY?!”
It was almost as disturbing when, a few scenes later, Baby Groot very deliberately and quite brutally kills his chief tormentor. Yeah, yay vengeance, but something about seeing a sweet toddler pushed to that point really bothered me. And then, near the end of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Baby Groot is the one entrusted with planting and setting off a huge bomb. Yes, he’s the only one who can fit through the small spaces to get the job done. Yes, for the sake of galactic survival, it must be done. Still, not really the sort of task to which one should set a toddler. Yeesh.
Visually, the film is stunning. Some of Marvel’s best work to date, IMHO. I especially loved the visual effects for Ego’s planet (before things go all to heck). Their imaginative, ethereal, fun-filled beauty reminded me a lot of Naohisa Inoue‘s illustrations.
On the whole, I thoroughly enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. It’s a fun film, one I wouldn’t mind seeing in the theater again, and one I’ll likely acquire when it comes out on home video. See it on the big screen. The visuals are worth it.
Release Date: May 5, 2017 (USA)
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Alcohol/Drugs: 1 (brief smoking, brief social drinking and drunkenness)
Language: 2 (a couple stronger, some deity, frequent minor)
Nudity: 0 (close in some cases)
Sexuality: 2 (scene in brothel, some innuendo, some discussion of conception)
Violence: 3 (superhero fights, space battles, fisticuffs, some death)