In stark contrast to this weekend’s new arrivals Hercules and Lucy, next weekend’s highly anticipated release of Guardians of the Galaxy current sits at 100 per cent freshness on the film criticism aggregate Rotten Tomatoes. Not to be too cynical, because having seen Hercules I can say it’s perfectly fine entertainment, but fans may want to think about saving their pocket money and just scratch off the days on your calendar till August 1. From the sound of things, Guardians is going to a very pleasant, and vary satisfying surprise.

First of all, yes it’s true, if you click over to Rotten Tomatoes right this minute and you will see that 100 per cent of all reviews are positive. Comic Book Movie was kind enough to do a round up of some of the review release for GOTG from major media outlets on both sides of the Atlantic, and some of the more florid make reference to not just sci-fi pillars like Star Wars or Aliens, but also the works of Guillermo del Toro and The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. That’s a lot to live up to in terms of expectations for those of us who haven’t seen it yet.

Also, not to throw cold water on the hype, but for a while there The Avengers had a 100 per cent ranking on Rotten Tomatoes until Amy Nicholson of posted the first negative review, and then the internet let slip the dogs of war, and apparently misogyny, on her e-mail inbox. The Avengers eventually settled at a respectable 92 per cent, which is one point off from the all-time top-raked Marvel Studios film on Rotten Tomatoes, Iron Man. With only 21 reviews posted so far, there’s still time for GOTG to lose some of that 100 per cent shine, but from the looks of it, Guardians of the Galaxy will still rank somewhere near the top of Marvel’s most critically-acclaimed films so far. In case you’re wondering, here’s the list in order:

  1. Iron Man: 93%
  2. The Avengers: 92%
  3. Captain America: The Winter Soldier: 89%
  4. Captain America: The First Avenger: 79%
  5. Iron Man 3: 78%
  6. Thor: 77%
  7. Iron Man 2: 73%
  8. The Incredible Hulk: 67%
  9. Thor: The Dark World: 65%

I don’t want to re-post the same reviews that Comic Book Movie did, but there are a couple that stood out, like this one from Coming Soon:

Possibly one of the funniest (and strangest) Marvel movies yet, James Gunn and his cast deliver an infinitely entertaining space opera that’s really something quite special. J.J. Abrams’ “Star Wars” movie now has even more to live up to.

I wonder if that’s a concern for Disney, that GOTG might be so well received that when Star Wars Episode VII is released next year, people will be saying, “I’d rather see Guardians of the Galaxy 2.”

On the other hand, there’s some good news if you’re tired of Marvel’s over-reliance on connecting together every single last project they put out. From Digital Spy:

Guardians also finds itself largely free from the brand-building baggage that’s plagued recent superhero films (Amazing Spider-Man 2 being the biggest culprit). Thanos aside, the film largely operates without reference to the wider Marvel universe – there’s no crammed in Captain America cameo or fleeting Nick Fury appearance, instead the focus is on telling a good story, and on these terms Guardians succeeds.

And since you’re probably wanting the context of that Buckaroo Banzai reference, from Variety:

An unusually prankish and playful Marvel Studios vehicle, director James Gunn’s presumptive franchise-starter is overlong, overstuffed and sometimes too eager to please, but the cheeky comic tone keeps things buoyant — as does Chris Pratt’s winning performance as the most blissfully spaced-out space crusader this side of Buckaroo Banzai.

Sounds like good, if not great, watching. Guardians of the Galaxy comes out next Friday.

Category: Comics, Film

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