Blast off with “Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3”

Published 8:00 am Tuesday, June 13, 2023

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Blasting onto the screen this week, in glorious color and frenzied action is the latest, and allegedly last, installment of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” trilogy. 

“Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3,” a Marvel property, exists as part of the same cinematic universe as The Avengers, Black Panther and Spiderman. However, in contrast to the overwhelmingly earthbound heroes of Marvel’s other franchises, “Guardians of the Galaxy,” as its name suggests, focuses on the far-flung reaches of the cosmos, with the myriad of alien worlds and lives composing Marvel’s outer space. 

The titular guardians at the center of the “Guardians” films are a ragtag team of lovable mercenaries and thieves, who became benevolent protectors of their galaxy’s innocent citizens.

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Overseeing this sprawling cast director and writer James Gunn. Gunn was a newcomer to the Marvel Cinematic Universe when he came aboard the first film, breathing a fresh dynamism into the MCU. Seen as a riskier choice for the PG-13 Marvel fare, Gunn’s past experience honed in the genres of comedy and horror. As a result, he was given a Marvel property that was seen as an afterthought, an addendum to the “Avengers” juggernaut. 

However, with the release of the first “Guardians” film, and the rave reviews that it received, Gunn’s flare for engineering both laughs and fear had proven his talents a welcome respite from the existing formula, even inspiring subsequent Marvel films to attempt to emulate and incorporate Gunn’s style, most notably the films’ inspired soundtracks. 

“Guardians: Vol. 3” is no exception from its predecessors, earning rave reviews and broad acclaim. Gunn and his ensemble cast have once again made a combination of heartfelt compassion, bone-crunching action and zany humor – a winning recipe, with the film’s compassion being the most lasting note. 

At the heart of the “Guardians” films is exactly that, heart. These films are colorful and action-packed, but they are above all concerned with emotion. The ragtag team at the center of the plot is truly a family. These films make a beautiful argument for the irreplaceable value of having a family, no matter the structure. 

By the beginning of “Guardians, Vol 3.,” all of the main characters have lost their respective birth families, some to death and tragedy, some to betrayal and abandonment. Yet, in finding each other they have all reclaimed the lost comfort and community of family, they have made a family of friends. For any fan of Marvel, “Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3” will be sure to make you laugh, cheer, and quite possibly cry. For any fans of film in general, we encourage you to embrace this cosmic comedy. You will surely find a connection to these lovable guardians. 

A common occurrence in Marvel films, this film has TWO extra scenes, one mid-credit scene, and one post-credit scene. We will leave the house lights down through the mid-credit scene, then bring them up for the text credits, and bring them back down for the post-credit scene.