No One Will Be Admitted Without A Guardian of the Galaxy

No One Will Be Admitted Without A Guardian of the Galaxy

Edge

It's been a long, long, long time since T2, and though this film is not of that calibre, it reminds you of why they made blockbuster R-Rateds, and I'll take it.

Reported 1 April, 2017

Action movies follow a marginally repetitive formula. Good guys and bad guys must meet, fight, then escape. This happens three times until the end when the bad guy dies. It is as comforting as it is bland as it is wonderful.

I like and continue to see these movies because like surrealist film, they remain filmic; they cannot be reproduced in play or even book form. But it is also true that the good ones are probably the best films ever made – they are able to make this incredibly transparent and compulsory structure not only come to life, but seem fluid, nay real. The good kind of reality. The kind we escape to.

Logan is pretty good, slightly better than The Great Wall slightly not as good as Kong: Skull Island (if it’s not competing with the classics of the genre like Aliens, it’s competing with its own year). It’s what we want every R-rated superhero film to be: R-rated. The violence always implied in the fact that the character of Wolverine has 18-inch indestructible razor sharp claws is, well, ooh. Yeah. There it is. Huh.

Sir Patrick Stewart gets to say ‘fuck’, and the film is able to let bad things happen in ways that it needs. Having just seen Ghost in the Shell, there are some stories that need the room to let events go to bad places, to places that we can’t explain to our children…until four months from now when it’s all over the internet. Then we just ignore them. It’s been a long, long, long time since T2, and though this film is not of that calibre, it reminds you of it, and I’ll take it.

It also bears mentioning these two wonderful performers (that is to say, Sir Patrick Stewart and Mr. Hugh Jackman), make decent, though hardly great material luminous. We love them, and the idea of a future where these familiar characters are old, with old people problems, is appealing in a way that independent films used to be. Like, say, a ten year old mute girl cutting off super soldiers head, see, ‘R-rated films are always great’, above.

And the great bits, well, they really are great. Our adorable Wolverine girl eating cereal as the super soldiers approach, while we the audience know what’s coming, well, that’s a whole movie for me. After that, do what you want. There’s other nice details as well, as our heroes are unable to crash through a fence, and have to back up after trying. Shane Black looked down upon thine work, and smiled.

But.

Well, it gets back to the formula. We need to put the characters together, take them apart, and put them together again, like that five ball pendulum thingie that’s in real baddies office, and that’s fine. But it sucks too. The film does this I think five times, which is two too many, and the extra parts groan.

Sometimes the film sees this rote requirement as a challenge, as it should. When Sir Stewart goes all mind-destructo in a casino town, it’s integral to the story and a nice payoff of what happens when a super psychic mind goes the unrelenting way of age. Sometimes, though, the film sees the formula as an inconvenient necessity.

This is never a good approach.

Right at the beginning, when, faced with…oh. Right.

– make your bad-guys compelling. Guy With Robot Arm Who Tries To Look Tough But Actually Has No Memorable Characteristics Otherwise, is not compelling –

when, faced Guy With Robot Arm Who Tries To Look Tough But Actually Has No Memorable Characteristics Otherwise, what you don’t do is send Convenient Tracker Mutant off to ‘put him in a ditch somewhere, but don’t check if he’s dead, don’t do that.’

Oddly, this would work better in a film without the R-rating, since the kind of lazy comic-book morality allows for the humanity that saves one and dooms millions. Unfortunately, the film opens with Mr. Jackman oster-izing various gang types for messing up his ride. In a PG-13 film, it would turn out that the limo contained super healing juice for time skin that will reveal that the next president has a mustache, making violence okay. In an R, he kills them, because it was his ride, see ‘why aren’t people making more goddamned R-rated action film’, above. Thus having killed less for less, why not kill more for more, as a lousy version of that classic tough bit of dialog would have it.

But on balance, a recommend. Because while the bad parts genuinely suck, the good parts are wonderful, and I would see Sir Stewart and Mr. Jackman turn up for a reading of a blank piece of paper.

I just wanna hang out with them. They seem cool. Although they’re starting to look very uncomfortable.

Edge
Profits!
Mr. Jackman believably plays that toughest of genre character: the rogue. We believe that he will abandon the girl if not paid. Again, less nice guys. That’s what she said.
$4.00
So violent.
$2.00
So very, very violent.
$3.00
The girls going to prom showing Mr. Jackman their boobies were, utterly, completely, totally, absolutely gratitutous. Thank you.
$2.00
Total Profits
$11.00
Losses!
What with film building to the collection of young escaped mutants showing us their powers at the end, doesn’t do that. Which is weird. You can miss opportunities, but you can’t – ever – miss sequences.
$2.00
Dredd didn’t take off his helmet in the good one, and mute girl should not have talked. I stand by that.
$1.00
If you suck, don’t suck at the end. My brain is small, so that’s what I remember.
$1.00
Total Losses
$4.00
Some More Profits
Not being able to remember stuff from a while ago is probably why La La Land lost the Oscar. I’m counting that as a profit for a film that came out in 2017 and has nothing to do with nothing. It’s not a system, but it’s good system.
$1.00
Profits
$1.00

$8.00

Edge
Edge

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