The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special Review: Pom Klementieff, Bautista are a sizzling Christmas combo

Summary:

Giving us a brief look at what the Guardians of the Galaxy finds itself between the events of Avengers: Endgame- Thor: Love and Thunder and the highly anticipated Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special during the Christmas season. Despite the festive season, Star-Lord/Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) is in a dejected state of mind. To cheer him up, Mantis (Pom Klementieff) and Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista) take on the task of giving Peter the best Christmas present ever; Quill’s childhood hero Kevin Bacon! As expected, Mantis and Drax get into strange shenanigans when they descend on Earth, specifically Hollywood. There is hilarity as they kidnap a wacky Kevin Bacon, but luckily it also turns into a lesson or two about friendship during the intergalactic adventure. Besides, Mantis has an ulterior motive behind her relentless attempt to make Peter happy…

Opinion:

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special couldn’t have come at a better time as it’s the perfect reintroduction (in a way!) to Guardians of the Galaxy, especially with the way Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 came about out a long time ago in 2017. Given the sheer volume of content plaguing Marvel Studios and the subsequent superhero fatigue plaguing fans, it might be difficult to keep up with the mischievous superhero gang. Anticipation for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has increased significantly thanks to the heartwarming Christmas special. With a duration of 44 minutes, James Gunn manages to tell a relatively cheesy but emotional story about the real friendship between completely different characters who start a family in each other. The fact that it’s a Christmas movie is just an added bonus, which immediately gives me that warm, fluffy feeling that permeates the holiday season.

What makes The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special a great watch for me – and unlike the many, many Christmas trips out now – has to be the endearing ensemble performance, led by the talented Pom Klementieff as Mantis, who has so far become one Minor character banned. Pom is absolutely contagious when you see her on screen, while her constant bickering with Dave Bautista’s Drax highlights the MCU humor we know and love. Watching the eccentric couple’s “Fish Out of Water” sequences as they land in Hollywood in pursuit of Kevin Bacon is a real highlight. Bautista is having a blast as Drax, a fan favorite, and it shows. On the other hand, I hope that the character development that Mantis is taking up in the Holiday Special will result in more screen time for the lovable character in the near future. Speaking of Kevin Bacon, there couldn’t have been a more fitting starry newcomer to mingle with the GOTG gang as we get an OTT characterization of the veteran actor. While James Gunn ups the ante of Guardians of the Galaxy in terms of its addictive soundtrack, Bacon gets to show off his vocal prowess in a festively centered performance that’s sure to leave a big grin on your face, just like mine did the case was.

Surprisingly, this time Chris Pratt takes a backseat to The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special (as does Karen Gillan’s Nebula, Bradley Cooper’s Rocket and Vin Diesel’s Groot). Despite this, the scenes in which Peter Quill plays pack an emotional punch. The animated opening where we hear from Kraglin Obfonteri (Sean Gunn) how Yondu (Micheal Rooker) “ruined” Christmas for Quill, and then hammer away at what Christmas and Santa mean with an electric, hilarious band performance , will surely make you laugh out loud. The *SPOILER* reveal at the beginning and end of the special, while heartwarming, doesn’t manage to grab you as much as it should have. It felt almost anti-climatic from the start. And that’s mainly due to the underdeveloped script (there are a few dialogue exceptions, they’re hysterical!) that you can tell that it wasn’t nurtured enough. However, the spirit of Christmas – as well as the eclectic, signature James Gunn charm of the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise – shines through and through. And at the end of the day, this makes The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special one of the best Marvel outings in the chaotic multiverse-driven MCU Phase 4. There are a few Easter eggs here and there, but it’s never overdone. Rather, we get a Christmas spectacle that we can visit again and again…

Pluses:

First it has to be the heartfelt ensemble performance in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, specifically Pom Klementieff and Dave Bautista as Mantis and Drax. Watching the offbeat combo bicker through the streets of Hollywood with childlike innocence is super entertaining to watch. The addition of Kevin Bacon is witty writing at its finest, as is Chris Pratt’s brief but sweet screen presence. Unsurprisingly, James Gunn treats us to yet another outstanding GOTG soundtrack that’s sure to become a Christmas staple, while timing the crisp emotional quotient in the storytelling just right.

Minuses:

The big reveal in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special might leave you a little teary-eyed, but it’s not affecting you the way it should. The storyline also feels a bit underdeveloped, with a lot less Rocket, Groot, and Nebula than we would have liked.

Highlights:

  • Pom Klementieff takes center stage to shine with an adorable performance alongside a hilarious Dave Bautista.
  • Kevin bacon! Kevin bacon! Kevin bacon!
  • Despite the short running time, The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special packs everything we know and love about the popular superhero franchise.

Conclusion:

Finally, James Gunn masterfully weaves his magic into The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, making it the perfect holiday watch for MCU fans, while Pom Klementieff and Dave Bautista are THE quirky couple we didn’t know we needed.

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