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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Directed by James Gunn. Starring Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Kurt Russell, Pom Klementieff, Elizabeth Debicki. (2017, PG-13, 136 min.)

REVIEWED By Marc Savlov, Fri., May 12, 2017

Everybody’s got family issues galore in this slightly less invigorating but still welcome sequel to director James Gunn’s 2014 surprise Marvel Universe hit. While the original had near-equal amounts of action, humor, and enough seriously badass rebel attitude to choke Smokey and the Bandit-era Burt Reynolds, Vol. 2 ups the ante by introducing Kurt Russell as Ego, a planet-sized entity in human form who is in actuality – stunned gasp! – cocky-ass Peter Quill’s, aka Star-Lord’s, father. (Star-Lord’s brand of kinda-sorta bad boy charm and cocksure posing echoes Russell’s turn in John Carpenter’s Big Trouble in Little China so often it’s a wonder JC didn’t get some sort of credit in the closing crawl.) Ego arrives with adopted daughter Mantis (the anime-eyed Klementieff), an empath who can latch on to others' emotions and take the pain away, and then there’s green-hued ass-kicker Gamora’s long lost sister Nebula (Gillan), who shows up with vengeance on her mind.

Set against a somewhat rambling plot involving the theft of some ultra-powerful Doomacell batteries from a golden-skinned race of interstellar perfectionists led by Debicki’s Ayesha, these familial conflicts – and the return of Michael Rooker’s former bad guy turned probie Guardian Yondu – give Vol. 2 a more serious tone than the first film. Which isn’t to say that it’s any less entertaining. Director and writer Gunn is a dab hand with space opera quippery and most of the set-pieces land bang on target, with collateral emotional damage to boot. It’s got more heft, and the risks are higher this time around, but this is one Marvel Extended Universe tentpole that is unlikely to be crushed beneath the earth-shattering seriousness of Cap vs. Tony Stark. It’s far too gleefully goofy for that, even with the death of a major character in this entry. Plus, Baby Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel doing a complete 180 from his Iron Giant gravel-growl) is just too goddamn cute. All in all, it’s a helluva fun ride and the platonic ideal of a Saturday afternoon matinee. By the way, you’re going to want to stick around until the very end of those closing credits to catch the movie’s five separate “final” scenes.

Alamo Drafthouse Lakeline

14028 U.S. Hwy. 183 N.  512/861-7070

drafthouse.com/austin/theater/lakeline

MON JUN 26

10:30am, 2:20, 6:00, 9:25

TUE JUN 27

2:20, 6:00, 10:00
AFA: 10:30am

WED JUN 28

10:00am, 1:35, 5:00, 8:15, 11:30

Alamo Drafthouse Mueller

1911 Aldrich #120  512/572-1425

drafthouse.com/austin/theater/mueller

MON JUN 26

2:25, 4:00

TUE JUN 27

4:30
AFA: 1:10

WED JUN 28

11:15am, 2:35

Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar

1120 S. Lamar  512/861-7040

drafthouse.com/theater/south-lamar

MON JUN 26

12:25, 3:40, 6:55, 10:10

TUE JUN 27

2:55
AFA: 11:40am

WED JUN 28

11:45am, 3:00, 6:15, 9:30

Alamo Drafthouse Village

2700 W. Anderson  512/861-7030

drafthouse.com/austin/theater/village

Tuesday matinee Baby Day shows (first show of the day) are intended for parents and their children younger than 6. Showtimes at this venue are subject to frequent change. Please confirm daily times by phone or website.

MON JUN 26

12:20, 6:30

TUE JUN 27

6:30
AFA: 11:50am

WED JUN 28

12:35, 6:30

Barton Creek Square (AMC)

2901 South Capital of Texas Hwy  512/306-1991

www.amctheatres.com

Matinee discounts available before 4pm daily. Bring Your Baby matinees the first Tuesday of every month.

MON JUN 26

CC/DVS: 10:00am, 1:00, 4:10

TUE JUN 27

CC/DVS: 10:00am, 1:00, 4:10

WED JUN 28

CC/DVS: 10:00am, 1:00, 4:10

Cinemark Round Rock

4401 N. I-35, Round Rock  800/326-3264

Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium. Call theatre for complete March 26-28 showtimes.

MON JUN 26

digital: 12:45, 4:05, 7:25, 10:45

TUE JUN 27

digital: 12:45, 4:05, 7:25, 10:45

Cinemark Southpark Meadows

9900 S. I-35  800/326-3264

Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

MON JUN 26

digital: 12:20, 3:40, 7:00, 10:15

Cinemark Stone Hill Town Center

18820 Hilltop Commercial Dr., Pflugerville  512/251-0938

www.cinemark.com

MON JUN 26

digital: 10:00am, 4:10, 10:00

TUE JUN 27

digital: 10:00am, 4:10, 10:00

City Lights Theatre

420 Wolf Ranch Parkway, Georgetown  512/868-9922

MON JUN 26

10:50am, 1:50, 5:00, 8:30

TUE JUN 27

10:50am, 1:50, 5:00, 8:30

Flix Brewhouse

2200 S. I-35, Round Rock  512/244-3549

www.flixbrewhouse.com/round-rock

MON JUN 26

CC: 10:45am, 2:45, 6:15, 9:30

TUE JUN 27

CC: 10:45am, 2:45, 6:15, 9:30

WED JUN 28

CC: 10:45am, 2:45, 6:15, 9:30

THU JUN 29

CC: 10:45am, 2:45, 6:15, 9:30

Gateway Theatre

9700 Stonelake  512/416-5700

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

MON JUN 26

CC/DVS: 12:10, 3:20, 10:10

TUE JUN 27

CC/DVS: 12:10, 3:20, 6:30, 10:10

WED JUN 28

CC/DVS: 12:10, 3:20, 6:30, 10:10

THU JUN 29

CC/DVS: 12:10, 3:20, 6:30, 10:10

Metropolitan

901 Little Texas  512/447-0101

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

MON JUN 26

CC/DVS: 12:00, 3:30, 7:00, 10:15

TUE JUN 27

CC/DVS: 12:00, 3:30, 7:00, 10:15

WED JUN 28

CC/DVS: 12:00, 3:30, 7:00, 10:15

THU JUN 29

CC/DVS: 12:00, 3:30, 7:00, 10:15
READ MORE
More James Gunn
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Marc Savlov, March 11, 2011

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Guardians of the Galaxy
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Kimberley Jones, Feb. 1, 2013

More by Marc Savlov
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KEYWORDS FOR THIS FILM

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, James Gunn, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Kurt Russell, Pom Klementieff, Elizabeth Debicki

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