Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Seamlessly Mixes Music with Movie Magic

If there’s one thing we can all admit is that Marvel’s mastered the art of making a movie with a large ensemble. They know how to distribute the on-screen time among major characters and this plays to the strength of the storytelling, evident, for instance, in The Avengers franchise.

Probably one of the coolest components added to the Marvel franchise has been James Gunn’s ability to bring music into the storytelling.

James Gunn returns to the fold as the director who layers this second “epic-er” space adventure around an “awesome mix” of tracks (complete track listing below) from decades past (‘60s and ‘70s) with an eclectic curation of artistes and groups like George Harrison (The Beatles), Cat Stevens, Parliament, and Fleetwood Mac (one of my favourite groups).

True to form, Gunn opens the movie with another musical introduction — and dancing. Let’s not forget that opening sequence from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1 that saw the then unknown Chris Pratt (as Star-Lord) dancing, twirling, jumping, kicking (around reptilian-looking aliens) and skipping to the 1973 hit by Redbone, “Come And Get Your Love” (video below), as he listened from his Walkman.

DC Comics could take some lessons from Marvel on how you masterfully weave incredible music into a movie’s scenes. Suicide Squad for instance, was a complete disaster.

There’s something about hearing the tracks throughout the movie that brings to the fore all kinds of emotions for the viewer. It adds to each scene, instead of taking away from it. Each track is well-timed and well-placed to take the movie to a whole other level.

Gunn skillfully lifts the audience into space with the scale of his story, complemented by the masterpiece that was “Awesome Mix Vol. 2”.

Awesome Mix Vol. 2 | Complete Soundtrack:

  1. “Mister Blue Sky” – Electric Light Orchestra
  2. “Fox On The Run” – Sweet
  3. “Lake Shore Drive” – Aliiota Janes Jeremiah
  4. “The Chains” – Fleetwood Mac
  5. “Bring It On Home To Me” – Sam Cooke
  6. “Southern Nights” – Glen Campbell
  7. “My Sweet Lord” – George Harrison
  8. “Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl)” – Looking Glass
  9. “Come A Little Bit Closer” – Jay and the Americans
  10. “Wham Bam Shang-A-Lang” – Silver
  11. “Surrender” – Cheap Trick
  12. “Father and Son” – Cat Stevens
  13. “Flash Light” – Parliament
  14. “Guardians Inferno” (feat. David Hasselhoff) – The Sneepers

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is again led by the humble Peter Quill aka Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) with his band of misfits that includes Gamora (Xoe Saldana), Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista ), Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper), and Baby Groot (Vin Diesel), who’s quite the scene-stealer.

Plot Summary:

“Peter Quill and his fellow Guardians are hired by a powerful alien race, the Sovereign, to protect their precious batteries from invaders. When it is discovered that Rocket has stolen the items they were sent to guard, the Sovereign dispatch their armada to search for vengeance.”

Additionally, we have Yondu Udonta (Michael Rooker), Nebula (Karen Gillan), and Mantis (Pom Klementieff) who the join the adventures of the Guardians as they cross paths with Ayesha (Elizabeth Debicki), the golden High Priestess and the leader of the Sovereign people.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 feels like you’re returning home now that we know all the main characters and Gunn’s directing and storytelling style.

It’s fresh, packed with laughter, action sequences abound, a bit of an emotional roller coaster, and entertaining from start to finish.

Volume (Vol.) 2 just kicked off the summer of blockbusters and Marvel has another winner on its hands already raking in $427 million over opening weekend, in addition to a 13-day international showing!

All things considered, this second installment could become Marvel Studio and Disney’s fifth billion dollar winner, joining the ranks of The Avengers ($1.51 billion), Age of Ultron ($1.41 billion), Iron Man 3 ($1.22 billion), and Captain America: Civil War ($1.15 billion).

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is a solid 9.5 out of 10! Grab a friend and go see it now!

Maroon 5 Debuts Its Feel Good Wedding Crashing Video, Sugar

Maroon 5 (M5) debuts their latest video “Sugar” from their fifth studio album entitled ‘V’ (pronounced five) and it’s a hit! It’s quite possibly one of the catchiest tunes at the start of 2015. In the video, Lead Singer Adam Levine explains that the band will cruise around Los Angeles, California, in an effort to hit up as many weddings as possible as surprise guest performers.

With each wedding, the reactions of the brides and grooms are priceless. I got married last November and I know if M5 had “crashed” my wedding, I’d be speechless too. Right now though, there’s some debate about whether or not the weddings in the video were real or fake.

The only confirmed real wedding of the entire video
Updated: The only confirmed real wedding of the entire video was this lovely couple

The video was directed by David Dobkin, director of the hit movie “The Wedding Crashers” that starred Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn. It’s a feel good video and great pop song with a throwback to funk and sounds of the 80s.

Official movie poster for the film featuring the slogan
Official movie poster for the film featuring the slogan “Life’s a party. Crash it.”

It’s a brilliant effort from a logistical, branding and marketing perspective and fans appreciate seeing real people participation. I mean heck, who doesn’t love weddings. I guarantee it’ll get you dancing and leave you smiling from ear to ear.

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A Quick Music Video Review: ‘The Writing’s On the Wall’ by OK Go.

OK Go, an American alternative rock band originally from Chicago, Illinois, currently residing in Los Angeles, California is set to release ‘Hungry Ghosts’, their first new OK Go studio album in four years.

Who remembers their famous video all shot with them doing choreographed moves on treadmills? By the way, that song was called ‘Here It Goes Again’. If this new video is any indication, there might be a few more creative masterpieces on their way.

In this video, OK Go uses art and design to create mind-bending optical illusions that will leave you saying “OK, no” or maybe even “OK, what?!”. The song itself is “OK”, but it’s the video that makes it all worth the 4mins and 17 seconds.

To shoot the entire video in one take, must’ve taken them tremendous preparation, but it paid off. One can only imagine how many retakes and rollbacks they probably went through.

Well worth it!!