I gotta give James Gunn credit where credit is due. I personally wasn’t very familiar with and didn’t care much about the Guardians of the Galaxy as Marvel Comic Book Characters. Once his movies came out though, they have become one of the most memorable and loveable group of heroes in Marvel for me. Volume 3 was really an awesome way to wrap up such a great trilogy by giving just the right closures to crucial plot points. Without question, this movie was one of the high points in the post-‘End Game’ landscape of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and there’s a lot to talk about in this Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 Movie Review. No major spoilers for this one so feel free to read on after watching the movie trailer, if you haven’t already!
Tying Up Loose Ends
As Volume 3 starts, there are a lot of unresolved matters that loom over our heroes – OG Gamora is dead. An alternate Gamora is with the group but it’s a version of her that didn’t fall in love with Peter Quill aka Star-Lord. Peter feels broken by the loss of the woman he loved. We still don’t know much about the backstory of Rocket. Nebula is now a part of the group and, as the Guardians have become sort of this big family, they are at that point of feeling each others’ quirks out. All that has obviously taken a toll on our heroes.
All these points were expertly conveyed in the first few minutes of the film which is great especially since the last full Guardians movie was back in 2017 which was practically 6 years ago so I’m sure a lot of us needed some reminding. All these plot points are resolved around the central story that focuses on Rocket. We finally get to see why Rocket never really spoke about his past and that’s because his tale is dark. As you may have seen in the trailer, Rocket’s past is one that’s full of torture, abuse, and experimentation which you get to see through some well-placed flashbacks. These events not only serve as an anchor point for the other stories as parallels are drawn with them from the Rocket narrative but it also becomes a necessary source of context as the group is now faced with the evil from Rocket’s past – the High Evolutionary.
While one can argue that there’s maybe too much going on at certain points, the film (in my opinion) is able to skillfully juggle all these which, in turn, lets it treat you to one plot resolution after the other which just feels absolutely satisfying.
All this story is, of course, accentuated by stunning visuals and intense action scenes that really gives Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 this wow factor. If you haven’t seen the film, look forward to this amazing corridor fight scene that was just mmm… *chef’s kiss*. And of course, it’s GOTG so you KNOW the soundtrack is just lit AF.
A Focus on Character Development
While GOTG Vol3 does feature the usual Marvel plot of “bad guy has an evil plan that good guys need to thwart”, it’s the Character Development aspect of the story that really carries the movie. Each character practically grows right before your eyes throughout the length of this film and almost every member of the Guardians transcends their initial limitations one way or another by the end. I won’t say much more as these are the parts of the movie that are just best seen for yourself.
I also really enjoyed the villain here. Sure, he’s no Thanos but I’m a big fan of properly motivated villains and I definitely saw that in the High Evolutionary. He’s a being of superior intellect who is committed to his mission of “perfecting” the world which, by itself, is sort of a noble goal. So much so that you can believe that the High Evolutionary probably doesn’t even see himself as a “BAD GUY” which makes him such a believable character. In concept, he’s doing something great but, in practice, all his efforts are rooted in vanity, pride, and a cold disregard for anything that will stand in his way.
There were, however, a couple of things I wasn’t a big fan of. Note that these weren’t enough to be deal-breakers but I would say they are huge missed opportunities.
First off, High Evolutionary’s power level seemed a bit weird. He was described as this SUPER POWERFUL entity that no one would ever want to mess with. Yes, he has moments where he would just be so amazingly powerful but there would be scenes where he would seem so weak because… reasons? It didn’t make a whole lot of sense for me.
Second would be Adam Warlock. Adam in the MCU is not quite accurate to what he was in the comics. For lack of a better term, he was just a huge man-child here. For a time, he was hinted before to maybe be the big bad of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 but this was not the case. If you’re someone who doesn’t know who Adam Warlock is from the comics, good for you. You may overlook this part of the movie. But if you do know who he is, just brace yourself for disappointment.
On a personal note, I feel that most MCU films after Endgame have been quite subpar. I’m happy to tell you that finally, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 breaks that streak and is able to give us a must-see Marvel Movie. With Volume 3 marking the end of the GOTG Trilogy, many had huge expectations for this film and James Gunn was able to deliver on those and maybe even more.
Volume 3 gives us a proper resolution to this fun group of heroes with almost every character showing a level of growth – big or small – that will reward you for being a fan that followed their exploits. There is a lot of character development, eye-popping visuals, and fight scenes that will take your breath away when you’re not laughing at their antics or vibing to the incredible soundtrack.
Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3 is definitely an MCU movie worth your time and attention and is out now in cinemas both in the Philippines and worldwide.