Gunn, Abnett, and Lanning collaborated on the third volume of Guardians of the Galaxy. The story follows Peter and his team as they embark on a mission to save Rocket Raccoon, who a crazed scientist created called The High Evolutionary, voiced by Chukwudi Iwuji.
After Gamora’s death in Avengers: Infinity War, the remaining Guardians stay in their hideout in Knowhere. Peter Quill is grieving and drowning his sorrows with alcohol while listening to depressing music. The upbeat tunes that once characterized his personality have been replaced with Radiohead’s “Creep,” setting a dark and unsettling tone. The film also includes distressing scenes of animal abuse.
Rocket is severely injured after being attacked by Adam Warlock, a follower of High Evolutionary, who attempted to kidnap him. Despite Peter’s negative attitude, the group of Guardians must work together to steal a valuable object that can save Rocket’s life. During their mission, they will encounter both familiar allies and enemies, including a Gamora from a different timeline who has no relationship with Peter or the Guardians and views him as a bothersome person who constantly shares his emotional baggage with her.
Why It’s No Longer Fun
In the first film, there was an enjoyable dynamic between the lively Peter and the sarcastic Gamora, but in the third installment, Peter is understandably downcast, yet it becomes irritating. It’s understandable why Gamora would recoil whenever he’s nearby.
The Guardians of the Galaxy are taking care of Peter, who is consumed by grief, while the rest of the Avengers are also struggling with the loss after the Snap. However, it becomes tedious for viewers to constantly see characters dealing with grief in every movie and TV show. In this film, even Rocket, usually the comedic relief, is not himself and is haunted by a violent and tragic past. The trauma depicted in the movie may not be suitable for young audiences.
Rocket is absent, leaving Groot to repeat his catchphrase without any real purpose. Nebula is stuck with the role of a nagging mother figure to Drax and Mantis, which limits her character development. However, Bautista and Klementieff shine in their roles, providing humor and emotion to an otherwise slow superhero film.
Peter and Mantis are siblings, but Mantis and Drax have a sibling-like relationship. They argue like children, but it adds a lightness to the movie that is missing in the other Guardians dealing with the aftermath of the Snap. Mantis and Drax’s interactions are enjoyable, especially when they are teased by new Gamora. They are not the only Guardians who bring some levity to the film.
The new characters in the MCU are a great addition, including Maria Bakalova, who played Borat’s daughter in Borat Subsequent Movie Film. She voices Cosmo the Spacedog, a labrador-retriever mix who was sent on a test rocket and gained telekinetic powers and the ability to speak English with a Russian accent. Cosmo’s desire to be recognized as a “good dog” is a charming running gag throughout the story.
In other parts of the movie, Will Poulter plays a charmingly goofy character similar to early Thor, which contrasts well with Elizabeth Debicki’s character, who is both returning and stressed.
Daniela Melchior and Nathan Fillion also bring clever humor to their smaller roles, with Fillion having previously starred in director James Gunn’s horror film Slither. However, Chukwudi Iwuji’s portrayal of a villain stands out among the other new actors, bringing a Disney-like quality to the film in a positive way.
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