Went and saw Guardians of the Galaxy 2 last night. It’s a solid enough retread of the first movie.
I remember watching GotG back in 2015, where superhero movies were a lot more serious. It really stood out, with both visuals and sounds from the 80s – like a giant throwback. Since then we’ve had Ant-Man, Dr Strange (more trippy than funny), Strange Things, and a pile of TV series. They figure out that laughing is good entertainment.
GotG2 takes that to the next level, where there are no serious people. Drax fights for about 3 minutes at the start of the movie, then another 3 minutes in the first act, then never again. He’s relegated to throwing out punchlines (which admittedly are pretty good). Where GotG went more or less full speed (minus the Collector-related scenes), GotG2 spends a lot more time examining why these people are who they are. It does work, just not as well as expected given the rest of the tone of the movie. Still a very enjoyable movie.
Related, this movie is why I am so hesitant on Zack Snyder’s Wonder Woman film. He seems completely unable to project relateable heroes. That works in the Watchmen, since it’s part of the underlying theme, but since then… ugh. Still, the trailers look good and my wife is super-mega-hyped.
The Dark Tower
I’ve read the books and have been looking forward to this for a long time. Given the cyclical nature of the story, this is a sequel to the books. It’s a weird series to explain to people. Anyhow, I think the setting works, Idris and Matthew are well-cast. My concern is around the idea that the Gunslinger is somehow
- not telling everyone he’s a gunslinger
- not willing to sacrifice anything and anyone to get to the Tower
If you’ve read the books, those are the two things that make him stand out – aside from you know, being good with guns. He has no fear, and will do anything to reach his goal. Perhaps it’s just related to the cut. Fingers crossed.
Blade Runner 2049
Blade Runner is one of my favorite movies. I still watch it every other month. You can clearly see the impact it had on cinema moving forward, as pretty much every sci-fi movie pays homage to the ideas, visuals, or sounds.
This one is set 30 years after the first one. Deckard is still alive, so that would mean he’s not a replicant (they have short lifespans). There’s a very large focus on how technology has impacted society, which is very appropriate I think. Surreal that after nearly 40 years (BR was in ’82) that it retains so much of the original’s essence. Having Denis Villeneuve behind the camera is nothing but good news to me as well.