Marvel's Phase II of films is in full swing, and we've finally got our first trailer for the curveball of the group, Guardians of the Galaxy. This comic is so unknown in the mainstream that, when it was announced, even the most die hard Marvel zombies said, "Wow. That's an obscure one to turn into a film."
But you know what? It makes sense. Marvel's kind of been out to prove that you can drop superheroes into any genre of film. Captain America was a World War II epic, and they're already telling us that Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a political thriller. Iron Man has sci-fi wrapped up, and Thor covers fantasy. One genre they haven't tackled yet that superheroes constantly pop up in is space opera.
Their leader is Star Lord, aka Peter Quill, our lovable rogue, half-human and half-alien. Chris Pratt plays him, star of Parks and Recreation and currently kicking butt on the big screen as the voice of Emmet, the hero of The Lego Movie.
We also have warrior woman Gamora, the daughter of galactic supervillain Thanos. She's the green-skinned one in the picture. Gamora is played by Zoe Saldana, probably best known as the new Uhura in the Star Trek reboot.
Everybody seems to be going nuts for the walking, talking raccoon. When I posted the trailer to Facebook last night, one comment I got was "I do not know this property at all, but I'm won over by the raccoon." Rocket Raccoon is the team's expert marksman, and his voice is done by Bradley Cooper.
The shirtless guy with the red and grey skin is Drax the Destroyer. His family was killed by Thanos, and now he roams the galaxy seeking vengeance. Drax is played by WWE superstar Dave Batista.
And rounding out the group is Groot, the big walking, talking tree, who provides the group's muscle. Groot is played by Vin Diesel, who'll be doing Groot's voice and did some performance capture for the character.
The plot appears to be standard outer space adventure stuff. Our heroes come into possession of a mystical object that's coveted by the bad guys, so they have to keep it from falling into the wrong hands and save the galaxy. "The Wrong Hands" include Ronan the Accuser, played by Lee Pace (whom I'll always remember as the Piemaker on Pushing Daisies) and space mercenary Nebula, played by my current #1 celebrity crush and former Doctor Who star Karen Gillan, who had to shave her lovely crimson locks to play the bald Nebula. And there's also the Collector, played by Benicio Del Toro. (That was the guy at the end credits of Thor: The Dark World, if you stuck around.)
And rounding out the cast we have Glen Close and John C. Riley as high-ranking members of the Nova Corp, the intergalactic police force watching the whole proceedings. Holy moly, that's a huge ensemble.
Managing this galaxy of stars is writer/director James Gunn, who brought us such recent cult classics as Slither and Super.
Now that you know the players, let's look at the trailer!
Well, what can be said? It definitely looks unique. Hooked on a Feeling provides an unusual music choice, and I think that's the whole key to this thing: unusual. When it comes to the superhero epics we've had lately, this one is definitely daring to be different. Can't wait.
Guardians of the Galaxy comes out on August 1.