Guardians of the Galaxy is a science fiction space opera based on the Marvel Comic. It is rated PG-13 and is appropriate for tweens and up because of language and a few off color jokes.
Action. Too often space operas are comedies with token action to satisfy the genre, but this movie is first and foremost an action flick that takes itself seriously with humor added to enhance the movie, not make up for the lack of story, plot, and action. This movie is filled with great hand-to-hand fighting, use of weapons, and cool vehicle scenes.
Comedy. This movie is funny with jokes that only work in a Guardians of the Galaxy movie. The humor was fairly unique and not the same jokes we've seen and heard a million times. That was a really enjoyable change.
Cast. I don't think this movie could have been better cast. Each actor and actress fit his or her part perfectly and played them like they were the character and not an actor playing a character.
Star Lord. Too often in these types of movies, the main character is incompetent and either saves the day by accident or has to do a lot of failing with everyone else sacrificing and making up the difference until the main character has no choice but to save the day at the end after much resistence. Star Lord isn't like that. While he's funny, he's not a goof or a bimbo. He's actually quite competent and skilled. It isn't hard to believe he would save the day. How refreshing, a hero that's actually competent.
Production Design. The visuals and design of this movie look like they came straight out of a late 70s to mid 80s scifi flick like Battlestar Galactica or Michael Jackson's Epcot Center movie. They spent the time and money to make it look like a major blockbuster, and it paid off. This movie will hold up for years to come with it's classic designs and attention to detail.
Music. The music is mostly 70s and 80s movies and fits the 80s scifi production design. It has the same vibe as the visuals, cast, action, and comedy. Amazing to see such harmony.
Pace. The pace is great. It never moves too quickly and loses the audience, more does it ever move to slowly and bore the audience.
Unique Footage. The footage from the trailer was great and told a story. I was concerned they had used up all the jokes in the trailer, but surprisingly, very little of the clips from the trailer made it into the final film which surprised me at first, and then pleased me when I thought about it. I hadn't already seen the movie before seeing the movie. What a refreshing change!
This is a near perfect movie. If you aren't a hardcore Marvel fan, you wouldn't catch all the references nor realize why Thanos was such a big bad guy, because that's never explained and needed to be. But it doesn't ruin the movie or even detract very much.
What I Would Like to Have Seen
Overall, this is a near perfect movie with great action, comedy, casting, special effects, and pacing. It's been a long time since anyone has made a movie like this. It's a solid flick that keeps you entertained from the beginning to the end. It's packed with things to interest an audience from 8 to 80. I can't wait to see it again. I give it 5 boxes of popcorn out of 5.