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Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
All heroes start somewhere.
Director: James Gunn
Science Fiction

Light years from Earth, 26 years after being abducted, Peter Quill finds himself the prime target of a manhunt after discovering an orb wanted by Ronan the Accuser.

Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

Buckaroo Steals from Marvel

I don’t know where this came from, whether it incubated in this form in comics for years. Or whether someone at the Studio hired someone else smart. What I do know is that Marvel is playing with fire with this. They know how to make roller coasters. They know how to seem profound to teenagers. And they know how to frame a shot.

But now, what? Will we expect all of their films to make fun of the Marvel empire? Will this last bastion of non-ironic teen juice dissolve like westerns did after Leone? Is it impossible now to have a Star Wars with no snickering?

With millions of others, I liked this in many ways. Seemingly alone, I find the other Marvel projects unbearable, uncinematic, solipsistic. If I could tease out one thing to celebrate in this, it would be the tree.

It is a character that becomes an environment. Twice. It is a character that contradicts the standard Marvel speechifying. Most striking of all, it is the only character to break the fourth wall. In the middle of the ultimate battle, it performs a fight move typical of Marvel: performance fighting, the kind that assumes there is a viewer to admire the silliness. Then Groot turns to the audience, looks directly at us and grins as if he is the only one who understands what is going on.

Did anyone else think of Hudson Hawk during that first Indiana Jones steal-the-orb sequence?

Posted in 2015

Ted’s Evaluation — 3 of 3: Worth watching.


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