Perhaps the finest, funniest moment in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is the first action sequence. Or perhaps I should put quote marks around that: “action sequence.” Because for most of its duration, the action is strictly an afterthought. The titular supergroup has been enlisted to defeat a giant star-squid, and its smallest member, Baby Groot (the twig-like offshoot of last installment’s arboreal giant), is hooking up some equipment in the foreground as the fight commences behind him. What is Baby Groot fiddling with? Some kind of space cannon?
Of course not. It’s a sound system, and no sooner is it plugged in than the Electric Light Orchestra’s pop jingle “Mr. Blue Sky” bursts forth in all its giddy, meteorological splendor. As Baby Groot’s companions battle the tentacular horror in the background, we’re treated to the delightful spectacle of the mini-veggie juking his way through the opening credits. It is, in its way, the perfect deflation of the time-to-save-the-world-again bloat that has grown customary in the superhero genre, and a worthy successor to the loose, goofy vibe of the first Guardians: You guys deal with the Latest Threat to All Life over there; us, we’re going to hang here and groove to some oldies.
Alas, the magic can’t quite last. (As even the song warns, Mr. Blue, you did it right, but soon comes Mr. Night…) The Guardians sequel and latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe certainly has its moments—quite a few in fact—but too often it finds … Read More