When he first learned about the Marvel superhero flick Guardians of the Galaxy, Peter Travers reflexively reached for his handy Scum Bucket. But now our trusted critic is eating his own words, saying the film "might be the most fun I've had so far this summer at any movie."
In his latest video review, Travers can barely hold back his giddiness when talking about Guardians, a surprisingly fun and hilarious adaptation of the comic franchise that he dubs "the orphan child of Marvel." The film stars Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation, Moneyball) as Peter Quill, a galactic bounty hunter armed with a tape deck of Seventies pop gems. And the blossoming actor's performance is the heart of the movie: "You're watching a star getting born," Travers says. "This is like watching Harrison Ford when he played Han Solo."
But part of Guardians' charm is the quirky chemistry of the ensemble cast, which includes Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel (voicing the tree-like creature Groot, who only says his own name) and Bradley Cooper (voicing Rocket, a gun-slinging raccoon). Travers laughs when talking about Cooper's stand-out performance, saying he elevates the character above "a candy-ass cartoon." He also gives some unexpected love to Diesel: "People used to say that Vin Diesel's acting was so wooden, he should be a tree," Travers says. "And now he actually is literally a tree and manages to be funnier than I've ever seen him."
There's an under-the-radar underdog vibe to Guardians of the Galaxy, and that's what Travers likes most about it: "This group of losers has so much fun shaking their sillies out that you will too."