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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

May. 03, 2023United States
Your rating: 0
7.3 3 votes

Synopsis

The Guardians of the Galaxy saga comes to a bittersweet close in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, an adventure filled with James Gunn’s trademark humor and heart. While the CGI-heavy plot retreads familiar territory, the movie succeeds as a poignant conclusion for the lovable intergalactic misfits. Celebrating the found family at its core, Vol. 3 balances spectacle with emotion for a satisfying cosmic farewell.

We open with Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) still reeling from the loss of Gamora (Zoe Saldaña), before new stakes arise from forgotten history. When Rocket Raccoon’s (Bradley Cooper) mercenary origins resurface, the Guardians become caught between Adam Warlock (Will Poulter), his golden sovereign race, and a vengeance-seeking separatist faction. Outgunned but not outhearted, the team fights overwhelming odds to forge their own destiny.

Writer-director James Gunn clearly crafts Vol. 3 as a personal coda, doubling down on relationships versus incorporating MCU connections. There are still plenty of dizzying CGI space battles with ships blasting lasers across trippy alien terrains. But Gunn keeps the messy exuberance of the team grounded even as the world-ending stakes amplify around them. We get thoughtful campfire conversations between action sequences, reminding us what’s worth fighting for.

The lively cast performances keep the film engaging even when the plot gets murky. Chris Pratt nails his projected evolution from doofy man-child to dependable leader as Peter Quill, while preserving comedic flair. Bradley Cooper again imbues such life into Rocket through voice alone. And Dave Bautista gives Drax a touching peace while remaining deadpan. These characters feel lived-in thanks to the actors’ comfort and chemistry.

There are missteps that come with concluding such an uneven saga – the film rushes to resolve lingering story threads. New addition Adam Warlock brings needed pathos but his arc feels abbreviated to deliver an emotional payoff. And the villain Krugarr lacks any distinct personality. But these shortcomings ultimately matter little compared to celebrating the Guardians together.

Visual gags and laugh-out-loud banter return in full force after the somber tone of prior entry Infinity War. We get goofy ‘80s pop culture riffs, amusing metaphors taken literally by Drax, and even cosmic cameos to punctuate the high stakes. Gunn’s smart script balances tangible character drama with irreverent space oddity humor. It deftly satisfies as both a personal goodbye and visual spectacle.

Make no mistake though, Gunn still delivers those VFX-heavy battle scenes fans expect amidst the emotions. After a poignant first half, Vol. 3 erupts with dimension-hopping set pieces, alien terrorists, spaceships dogfighting, and reality-bending brawls. But the action is wisely crafted around showcasing each hero’s personality when facing impossible odds. Their flaws and compromises ultimately save the galaxy.

By its touching finale, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 fulfills its mission. While the convoluted sci-fi plot wavers at points, James Gunn succeeds where it matters – giving this misfit family a heartfelt cinematic send-off. The movie circles back to its own offbeat beauty and spirit. Watching the credit roll on these heroes is no less than earning an Infinity Stone.

Original title Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Director

James Gunn
Director

Cast

Chris Pratt isPeter Quill / Star-Lord
Peter Quill / Star-Lord
Dave Bautista isDrax the Destroyer
Drax the Destroyer
Bradley Cooper isRocket (voice)
Rocket (voice)
Vin Diesel isGroot (voice)
Groot (voice)
Will Poulter isAdam Warlock
Adam Warlock
Sean Gunn isKraglin / On-Set Rocket
Kraglin / On-Set Rocket

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