Guardian's of the Galaxy: Vol 2. - Blu-ray Review

Michael Scott

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Guardian's of the Galaxy: Vol. 2

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Movie: :4stars:
Video: :5stars:
Audio: :4.5stars:
Extras: :3stars:
Final Score: :4.5stars:



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Movie

Guardian’s of the Galaxy was the film that really shouldn’t have been the smash hit that it was. Or to be more accurate, it is the film no one EXPECTED to be the hit that it was. Films like Iron Man, Captain America, Spiderman etc are more believable as hits due to their incredible popularity in the comic book world. Even Ant Man is understandable as Hank Pym/Ant Man was one of the first founding members of the original Avengers. However NO ONE expected the niche comics Guardian’s of the Galaxy to completely sweep the box office like it did. While DC was worrying about putting the first and most epic female super hero on screen, Marvel was just going balls to the walls and saying “hey, why not putting a talking raccoon on the screen! And while we’re at it, how about a tree creature that says nothing but ‘I am GROOT!’ while we’re in the groove”. Thankfully Guardian’s of the Galaxy was a mega hit for Marvel, and it paved the way for a sequel before they team up once again for the last Avengers film.

Guardian's of the Galaxy has always been huge on family. Not exactly blood family, but the fact that our “pack” is your center and that no matter where you come from, you can be family. That was explored in the first film quite heavily, but it’s even more of a focus in the second outing. Right off the bat we’re thrown back into Starlord’s makeshift family as the Guardian’s are given a mission to protect some intergalactic batteries (sounds weirder than it is. Ok, maybe it’s as weird as it sounds). Starlord/Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Rocket the Raccoon (Bradley Cooper, baby Groot (Vin Diesel) and Drax (Dave Bautista) are hired to protect these batteries in order to gain access to a very special prisoner, Nebula (Karen Gillan), who has evaded them since Gamora’s and her split from the mad Titan, Thanos (Josh Brolin, who doesn’t show up this time around).

HOWEVER, Rocket isn’t exactly the most honorable of thieves, and ends up putting the crew in danger as the same benefactor’s who hired them are now after the group due to Rocket’s clepto nature. After crash landing on a remote planet the crew comes face to face with a space fairing man who claim’s to be Peter’s father, Ego (Kurt Russell). Inviting them back to his home planet, Ego wants to show Peter that he REALLY is his father, but Gamora and Rocket have some suspicions about Ego’s motives. Also, Yondu (Michael Rooker) has been disgraced by the rest of the ravager higher ups, and is trying to redeem himself by tracking down Starlord and the Guardian’s to redeem himself. All of which lead to an epic confrontation on Ego’s home planet where the rough and tumble crew find out what the REAL meaning of family is.
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Guardian’s of the Galaxy: Vol 2. is a blast to watch, although it is a mild step down from it’s predecessor. The movie explores the themes of family and bonds much more closely, but it also limits the scope of the film as well. Like usual, Marvel villains take the back seat to the heroes and the end battle between Ego and the Guardian’s just doesn’t have the weight that other super hero films have. There is also WAAAAAAAAAAAY more Marvel humor in the film than the first one. Which leaves some of the more serious scenes feeling not as impactful. Such as when Peter and Ego are having their heart to hear and it’s revealed what Ego’s true intentions really are. The jokes and banter just lighten the mood TOOO much. That being said, the movie has a LOT going for it, and the huge budget makes for some incredibly fun space scenes that out Star Wars, Star Wars. The opening battle as the Guardian’s make their escape from the Sovereign fleet is INCREDIBLE (some sci-fi nerds will notice Ben Browder playing the military commander, which made me completely nerd out), and the expounding on Yondu’s character is nothing short of jaw dropping (I almost cried at the end as Yondu’s character became one of the most incredibly poignant characters of the whole film).

Guardian’s just WORKS on so many different levels. The color grading and the characters all just have gigantic throwbacks to the 1980s (the score is more 70s ish, but that’s just nitpicking). We have Sylvester Stallone, Kurt Russell and Michael Rooker all being HUGE throwbacks to that era (and while Stallone is a throway character, I think his inclusion is more just a nod to the legendary 80s than anything else). All of the characters mesh well together ,and even the new ones work pretty well. I did have some complaints about the addition of Mantis, as her character was watered down a bit, and the fact that they made Starlord’s father Ego instead of Jason of Sparta, but that is a minor complain in a hilariously fun action movie that really shows Marvel won big by putting them on screen.




Rating:

Rated PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi action and violence, language, and brief suggestive content




Video: :5stars:
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This is a Marvel blockbuster film. Need I say anymore?
Guardian’s of the Galaxy: Vol 2. is a visually stunning film that just maxes out the ability that Blu-ray has to show detail and color. The whole image is one shiny neon rainbow of colors, ranging from Yondu’s head fin, to the energy bursts from weapons, and even little blue and orange detailing along the sides of the ships. Faces are ridiculously detailed, with every pore and facial curve showing up for the audience. Black levels are amazingly deep and inky, and I didn’t notice any noticeable signs of black crush or low detail levels in the shadows. Visible artifacts are nonexistant, and the entire film is a bright and gorgeous cartoon come to life. The ravager schip looks dark and dang, while Ego’s home world is light and airy (with a slight alien twist), and each individual world has its own texture. There’s a few blips on the radar in regards to a few shoddy CGI scenes, but the majority looks impeccable (the EPIC battle as Rocket, Groot and Yondu escape his mutinied crew is beyond gorgeous).







Audio: :4.5stars:
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Marvel generally puts out stellar tracks, and this 7.1 DTS-HD MA mix (Atmos track is on the 4K disc) is a really solid performer. In fact, it SHOULD be a show stopper, but there is one mild “Marvel” flaw in the track that has me dial back the score just a scoshe. Dialog is super crisp and clean, and the surrounds are wildly active from the get go. Sovereign ships dance in and out of the sound field with laser blasts impacting all around, Yondu’s whistle weapon (yeah, my own term) zips in and around the entire stage, and engine blasts are deep and throaty. LFE is powerful and just HITS you right in the gut with each energy blast and ship explosion. The complaint is something that I saw with Avengers: The Age of Ultron. The mid range seems a bit “thin” if you know what I mean. Everything is there, and the low end is low and throaty, and I can’t find ANY distortions, but that mid range just sounds anemic to my ears. It’s not a WILD thing, but it leaves the track feeling like it could have been a bit better.






Extras: :3stars:
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• The Making of "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" – A four-part, behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film, done in the style of classic-rock album liner notes.
• Visionary Intro – Director James Gunn provides context on how he continues and expands the storylines of these beloved characters in "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2."
• Guardians Inferno Music Video – Join David Hasselhoff and special guests for a galactic retro dance party.
• Gag Reel – Laugh out loud at all the hilarious off-script shenanigans and bloopers that took place on the set of "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2," featuring all your favorite Guardians.
• Four Deleted Scenes – Check out four specific scenes that had to be cut from the film, including two extended scenes and two deleted scenes.
• Audio Commentary – Check out a special narration of the film by director James Gunn, who guides fans through an inside look at the making of the movie.








Final Score: :4.5stars:


Whether it’s the sumptuous visuals, or the family nature of the flick, Guardian’s of the Galaxy: Vol 2. is a smash hit sequel that is a blast to watch. The action is a blast, and it’s one of the smarter Marvel movies out there in a sea of films that really are just becoming cookie cutter at this point (my biggest complaint with most Marvel Films). I would normally complain about the level of humor in the film, but Guardian’s is a franchise that really thrives off of the lunacy more than be hampered by it. Audio and video wise, Disney/Marvel knows what they’re doing and while I didn’t have the pleasure to view the 4K UHD film, this Blu-ray is well worth the price of admission. Recommended .




Technical Specifications:

Starring: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Kurt Russell
Directed by: James Gunn
Written by: James Gunn
Aspect Ratio: 2.39.1 AVC
Audio: English DTS-HD MA 7.1, French, Spanish DD 5.1
Studio: Disney/Buena Vista
Rated: PG-13
Runtime: 136 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: August 22nd, 2017







Recommendation: Great Watch

 
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Jon Liu

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Was hopin' you would get the 4K version of the movie, but this is still a good indication on how the 4K presentation will be anyway.

I was a bit tired when I saw it in theaters at 10:30 at night, but still really, really liked it. I have this pre-ordered and can't wait to see it again!
 

Michael Scott

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Sadly no 4k. Starting at the bottom with a new unestablished site has has it's downsides. Anyone wanna buy me a 4k copy I'll review it lol
 
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Todd Anderson

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Great review Mike! I'm adding this to my collection... really enjoyed the first one. Took my kids to see the second one in the theater... I'm sure they'll want to watch it again.
 

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Thanks for the review. I wanted to catch this in the theater but was not able to. I will get this one.
 

leecreek

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I really enjoyed the first one. Waiting on this ones release.
 

Tonto

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Great review Mike, will watch this one for sure. Really enjoyed the first one as well!
 

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Thank you for the review Mike. You know I own the first one and for some reason I thought it was just an ok movie. I don't know maybe it was the mood and I need to see it again. Maybe it is like what my wife tells me when a movie is just ok for me. When that happens she tells me I didn't like it because Jason and Freddy aren't in it to slash someone lol.
 

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Weird. This title isn't available direct from Amazon (only through third party)... new for $59?
 

Michael Scott

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amazon and Disney have had this little "war" going on for about a year. Amazon doesn't list Disney products till after release date. suspicions are that they are trying to strong arm Disney into a better deal for distribution, like Walmart did to so many companies over the years
 

Todd Anderson

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Ah. So it's coming... just not today. ;-)
 

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Watched the 4K version this morning and it's amazing. The colors are utterly spectacular and if you're setup for it the 4K is definite reference material. Not to mention the Atmos track was sonic nirvana. A great follow up to the original and a must add to anyone's library.
 

Michael Scott

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I was in BB yesterday picking up a network extender and saw the flick for sale. But $30! Just didn't pull the trigger. I need to, though.
 

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* Ordered off Amazon. :T
 

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Saw this in the theaters and loved it. Will definitely pick it up in UHD
 

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I got my copy of the 3D and UHD version of this film and watched the 3D version. SPECTACULAR 3D, especially for being a post-conversion! The movie was every bit as entertaining as it was in the theaters when I saw it. This weekend will be my 2nd viewing with the UHD disc!

Colors were off the charts even for the 3D, even compared to what I remember them being in the Dolby Cinemas! I can't wait to see the UHD version!
 

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Waiting on a Bluray from Amazon here.
 

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Other Amp
VSX21-THX
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
OPPO UDP-205, UDP-203, Panasonic UB820
Front Speakers
SVS Ultra Towers
Center Channel Speaker
SVS Ultra Center
Surround Speakers
SVS Ultra Surround
Surround Back Speakers
SVS Ultra Bookshelf
Front Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation
Rear Height Speakers
SVS Prime Elevation
Subwoofers
dual SVS SB16s + dual PSA XS30s
Other Speakers or Equipment
Behringer 1124p; Aura Bass Shaker Pros; SuperSub X
Video Display Device
JVC RS520
Screen
Carada Cine-White 0 gain
Other Equipment
LG Electronics 65-inch B6 OLED, Sony 65-inch X900F
One of the few times that Amazon actually stumbles!! I think Mike is right... someone is punishing someone...
 
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