Aug 202017
 

Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 is a good step down from the first movie but still enjoyable enough even if the jokes at times feel forced and the story not quite as strong, and a villain’s motivations a bit of a letdown. That said, the performances were mostly good especially Karen Gillan and Michael Rooker.

 

 

Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2
(2017)

Genre(s): Science Fiction, Action, Comedy
Disney | PG13 – 136 min. – $49.99 | August 22, 2017

Date Published: 08/20/2017 | Author: The Movieman

 


MOVIE INFO:
Directed by: James Gunn
Writer(s): Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning (based on Marvel comics); James Gunn (written by)
Cast: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, Sylvester Stallone, Kurt Russell
DISC INFO:
Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Deleted Scenes, Gag Reel
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: 4K, Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 2
Audio (4K): English (Dolby Atmos), English (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Audio (BD): English (DTS-HD MA 7.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video (4K): 2160p/Widescreen 2.40
Video (BD): 1080p/Widescreen 2.40
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Disc Size: NA
Codecs: HEVC / H.265 (4K), MPEG-4 AVC (BD)
Region(s): A, B, C

 


THE MOVIE — 3.5/5


Guardians of the Galaxy was one of my favorite comic book movies of all time be it Marvel or DC. So, I was looking forward to seeing Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 so much I actually went to the theaters, a rare occurrence nowadays for me. I left the theaters the first time entertained yet also disappointed. Second time around, I turned off my theater equipment with nearly the same feeling, entertained but disappointed. I had a few issues with this film but the biggest one is felt bloated and the ultimate villain, as there a few scattered about, and his motivations felt underwhelming and, frankly, boring.

The story in Vol. 2 finds the Guardians — Peter Quill (CHRIS PRATT), Gamora (ZOE SALDANA), Drax (DAVE BAUTISTA), Rocket (BRADLEY COOPER) and Baby Groot (VIN DIESEL) — tackling a monster as the opening credits roll, their goal is to retrieve some powerful crystals for Ayesha (ELIZABETH DEBICKI), the leader of the Golden High Priestess of the Sovereign. Their payment is the retrieval of Nebula (KAREN GILLAN), Gamora’s bitter sister, the two share a father in Thanos. Now, the Sovereign culture is rather benign, that is, unless you cross them, which the Guardians do when Rocket, unbeknownst to the others, steals a few crystals which fetch a fortune on the open market.

After being pursued, and narrowly escaping, Ayesha and her drone armies with the aid of a “little man” atop a spaceship, the Guardians crash land on a planet. This “little man” as it turns out is named Ego (KURT RUSSELL) and just so happens to be Peter’s long lost father. Ego is actually a celestial being with his own planet so Drax and Gamora accompany Peter with his father to the planet. Rocket, as well as Baby Groot, remains behind to repair the craft and keep an eye on the imprisoned Nebula.

And if we didn’t need another plotline, although in fairness these do come together, we are re-introduced to Yondu (MICHAEL ROOKER) who has been exiled by his old Ravager colleague (SYLVESTER STALLONE) for child trafficking. For Yondu, times are tough and his crew is getting restless when he receives an offer from Ayesha to bring in the Guardians.

So, there we have the various plotlines and characters. On the surface, each are necessary for the plot and although some trimming would’ve been nice, these do come together rather nicely at the end with a good payoff. Where my issues with the movie is with the writing and dialogue itself, in particular the seemingly non-stop jokes which pop in even during some of the more serious scenes. This would’ve been okay had these jokes even remotely landed and instead they just felt forced.

On the plus side, the performances were good from the core cast. Chris Pratt has some nice scenes with Kurt Russell; Zoe Saldana and Karen Gillan once again work well opposite the other; Dave Bautista is, well, Dave Bautista cracking jokes; and the voice work of Bradley Cooper as Rocket is more or less what we’ve seen in the first film. But perhaps the highlight is Michael Rooker reprising his role and really has some genuinely great scenes and is the standout.

Written and directed by James Gunn, Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 had a tall order to top what made the first movie so great (to me, anyway) and although I was fairly well entertained and for the most part liked seeing these characters again, the writing wasn’t up to snuff and at over two hours, it seemed to drag at times and we get yet another CGI-fest third act, but I guess I have to expect that from any comic book movie at this point…

 

SPECIAL FEATURES – 3.0/5


This release comes with an embossed and shiny slip cover and inside contains the Blu-ray Copy and Digital HD redemption code.

Audio Commentary – Writer/Director James Gunn offers up a lively track as he always does breaking down the pre-production and production process and coming back to this world and characters.

Bonus Round: The Making of Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 (37:39; HD) is a well put together behind-the-scenes featurette that includes interviews with the cast and crew.

Guardians Inferno Music Video (3:35; HD) is a retro video in the 1980s style.

Gag Reel (3:41; HD) – Filled with plenty of on-set antics and missteps.

Deleted Scenes (5:04; HD) – There were four scenes that were cut out, though one is more of a line-o-rama.

 


4K VIDEO – 4.75/5, BD VIDEO – 4.75/5


Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 marks the first Disney 4K release, and while it’s not exactly a stellar transfer (2160p ultra high-definition), as I felt there were times the picture seemed a bit soft, it still looks fantastic. Where this UHD excels is with the colors which look absolutely brilliant and there is a wide array featured in the film, especially in the neon spectrum. Also well done are dark levels which appear nicely stark but still keeping a level of detail in those shots. The Blu-ray offers much of the same visual spectacle and also looks amazing with its 1080p high-definition transfer (MPEG-4 AVC codec).

4K AUDIO – 5.0/5, BD AUDIO – 5.0/5


The disc comes with an impressive Dolby Atmos track showcasing the numerous action set pieces but also does nicely for those quieter, more dialogue-driven, sequences which were crisp, clean and clear coming through the center channel. There was fine distribution across all 7 channels with an extra boost with the LFE, shaking and rumbling the floor especially noticeable during the space chase scenes.

Interestingly, I guess for older systems, there was also English and French language Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 tracks.

 


OVERALL – 3.75/5


Overall, Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 is a good step down from the first movie but still enjoyable enough even if the jokes at times feel forced and the story not quite as strong, and a villain’s motivations a bit of a letdown. That said, the performances were mostly good especially Karen Gillan and Michael Rooker, the latter a standout. This 4K release from Disney does feature incredible video/audio transfers but I was a tad disappointed with the features.

 

 

 

 

Check out some more 1080p screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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