"Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2"

Image result for guardians of the galaxy vol 2 600 x 200

Guardians of the Galaxy was a surprise hit in 2014. The business it did in 2014 was astonishing and completely shocked the industry. This was a summer movie that had the brains to pull off action, comedy and drama all in a single shot.  Now, fast forward 3 years and we've got its much anticipated sequel. Many fans will absolutely love this film and rightfully so. James Gunn has done a great job with these two films and it will definitely be enjoyed even if it is half the measure of the first film.

First off, I will say this right off the bat: The movie is good. It is light and funny and digestible in ways that far too few summer movies ever are. This is a decent sequel to an above average movie. 
The cast returns and delivers even more banter and jeering at each other, which is something I loved about the original, which does add to the characters and makes you care way more than you ever should for these band of misfits. Chris Pratt, although charming in a goofy token way, I'm still not convinced he's all that talented an actor, but, especially, the voice work of Bradley Cooper really tie this film's characters together. Supporting cast members such as newbie to the series, Kurt Russell or seasoned alumni Michael Rooker, all deliver. Also, Dave Bautista. I really do believe Bautista is the revelation of these movies, he's the funniest and quirkiest, that's for sure. His "dumb act" works so well that I just can't seen anyone else pulling off the lines that he has. He is just so good and might just be the MVP of the films.

Guardians of the Galaxy's strong point has always been its cast and James Gunn knows it. Gunn is highly talented as a filmmaker and screenwriter, but, no matter how good of a job he does here, and it's quite ambitious to be juggling multiple storylines the way he does here, the film is a bit of a mess at times.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 suffers from "sequelitis" as in it is way too similar to the first film. There isn't enough to distinguish it from the original and that just doesn't cut it. There was a freshness and inventiveness that the first one had, a sense of discovery of a new world, a unique vision, no thanks to Gunn, that really transported you. There's a reason why many people compared it to the original "Star Wars." It really did bring you back to a time when movies could transport you to the stars and entertain. 

Truthfully, the only way to distinguish both films apart are the soundtracks. While both soundtracks are awesome, they're both different in a lot of ways. From Blue Suede to Fleetwood Mac, that's the big difference musically...but visually, it's more of the same. That's probably the biggest and only complaint that I have with this film. As much as I like seeing these guys and gals kick some otherworldly ass, I still wish there was just a little bit more to it than what we got. Most of the reviews seem to be indicating the same qualms.

If Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 seems to be rehashing the original's formula, albeit with a new character here and there and a revamped soundtrack, I think it was purposely done that way to make as many fans happy with the end product, obviously this means it ain't risk-taking cinema, but did we really expect that from the Marvel canon? The first film has been justly celebrated because it felt like a diamond in the rough, we didn't think Marvel had it in them to create something wholly new and different [B-]