Early reactions for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” have started to roll in and it appears that the Marvel Cinematic Universe is back on track after the mixed reception to “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.” Critics are praising the trilogy-ending sequel as the “best Marvel movie in years” and “surprisingly emotional,” although some reviewers have noted that the film is “uneven.”
Heartfelt and Emotional Story
Awards Radar editor Joey Magidson called the film “full of heart” and shared that it brought him “to tears on multiple occasions.” “It’s not what you’re necessarily expecting,” he added, “but it really does land. A perfect ending, too.” Next Best Picture editor Lauren LaMagna agreed, writing that “Guardians 3” is “full of stakes, emotion and feels like a solid ending (good thing!). The production design and set pieces are some of Marvel’s strongest.”
Surprising Emotional Core
Uproxx writer Mike Ryan praised director James Gunn’s focus on Rocket and the love and friendship between the characters. “James Gunn bets the house on a surprisingly emotional story… Bets and wins. It’s pretty incredible.” Den of Geek editor David Crow echoed this sentiment and thanked Gunn for being back in the MCU, stating that “This is easily the best Marvel movie in years and had a… surprisingly wistful heart.” Nerdopolis editor Sean Tajipour also hailed the film as “an emotional and action-packed rollercoaster ride” and “easily the best MCU film since ‘No Way Home.'”
However, not all reviews are glowing. Next Best Picture editor-in-chief Matt Neglia noted that the movie “sometimes succeeds” in its goal of “sweeping emotion, gut-busting laughs, and thrilling action” but that it still “feels strangely uneven and anticlimactic.” Similarly, Grace Randolph wrote that while Gunn is “quickly becoming [a] phenomenal blockbuster director,” he “really needs to stop putting his family and friends in his movies.” “It’s super distracting and took me out of a whole sequence,” she added.
James Gunn’s Return
James Gunn returns to the director’s seat for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” after writing and directing the previous two installments. Gunn was initially fired by Disney in 2018 after controversial jokes he made on Twitter years ago resurfaced online. He was reinstated as director in 2019 after many “Guardians” actors, most notably Dave Bautista, criticized Disney for cutting ties with him. In the meantime, Gunn worked with DC and Warner Bros. to direct “The Suicide Squad.” Gunn is now in charge of DC Studios along with Peter Safran, and the two are rebooting the DC Universe on the big screen, starting with Gunn’s “Superman: Legacy.”
Overall, the early reactions to “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” suggest that the film has a surprising emotional core and may be the best Marvel movie in years. Despite some mixed reviews, it appears that James Gunn’s return to the MCU has been successful, and fans can look forward to a satisfying ending for the beloved “Guardians” characters.