Some people might still be wondering--in a good way--how this movie ever happened. None of us knew who these guys were before this movie, right? Probably not even many of the Marvel nerds did. Well, it happened because Marvel Studios didn't have the rights to some of its more famous characters (they still hadn't acquired Spider-Man back yet), and they were running out of guys we'd actually heard of. All of that, and I guess we needed a more strictly outer space setting for a storyline that sheds more light on the Infinity Stones--the main plot device driving the Marvel Cinematic Universe right now.
So they reached deep into the bottom of the barrel and came up with these guys. The Guardians consists of human Peter Quill/Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), green alien Gamora (Zoe Saldana), this buff alien character named Drax (Dave Bautista)... and then an actual tree alien (Vin Diesel) and a raccoon (Bradley Cooper). Yup. These characters--who are either criminals or assassins or just misfits--have to come together to stop the insane Kree named Ronan from obtaining something called the "Orb"--which has the power to wipe out entire planets.
If you think it sounds weird, well, that's because it kind of is. This takes place in deep space mostly around a bunch of oddly-named planets, filled with quite a bit of technobabble or odd sci-fi speak that sometimes makes little sense. And when you get to the point where the raccoon is perched on the tree character with a machine gun and both of them are doing "war yells" as the raccoon opens fire, you can't help but laugh at the ridiculousness of it. And yet, it's still incredibly enjoyable.
As weird as this movie is at times, it's still incredibly fun. There's a bucket-load of humor, most of it verbal; much of it revolving around either Star-Lord's or Rocket's (the raccoon's) wisecracks, or the fact that Drax takes all "figures of speech/expressions" literally, or the fact that Groot--the tree character--only communicates by saying "I am Groot," with hilarious results. The action's pretty fun too, for the most part. And the cast is excellent; in addition to the main five characters, it's rounded out by Karen Gillan, John C. Reilly, Glenn Close, and Benicio del Toro. The slightly more unknown Michael Rooker is also amusing too in his role.
Of course, there are a few things here and there that are just a little too out there. And also, parts of the climactic confrontation don't entirely make sense at times; but most of the audience generally won't care because they've enjoyed the movie too much already up to that point. It's a movie that, at the outset, really doesn't look like it should work that well. And yet it does, almost to perfection; so much so that it's made the formerly unknown Guardians of the Galaxy a household name now. And with good reason. If you've been nervous about watching this movie, give it a shot anyway. You might be surprised.