Although the spaceships, fight scenes, explosions, the inclusion of a WWE star in the cast and the like might make you think otherwise, structurally Guardians of the Galaxy is really a comedy. There's at least one running gag. There are a multitude of other gags, some clever, some not so clever. They run from quite painful puns to high-octane slapstick (albeit slapstick with cgi and explosions) to some quite extended and sophisticated wordplay that wouldn't be out of place in a radio comedy. Being a comedy there were a few occasions where I thought the plot seemed stretched certainly close to breaking point in pursuit of the gag. Whether or not you will find it fun is up to you but I think there's enough different beats there that you're likely to find parts of it funny.

Having said it's a comedy and the plot is subsidiary to the gag doesn't mean there's not something that I consider a decent sci-fi action flick here too. The start didn't seem too promising to me. There was a confused scattering of too many people with different colour skin chasing our very pale-skinned hero. OK, when I say different colour skin I mean green, blue, red and all kinds, but still. Gradually, however, the various factions settle down, some truces are made and instead of trashing around the plot starts to move. This period of thrashing around did serve to introduce the titular Guardians to each other, even if they didn't appear to be the force for good you might expect. It's not a common method for introducing characters to each other in a film, although I can see how it would work in comic book series and I've certainly read books where it's been used successfully. As someone that didn't know the comics it didn't work that well for me, although it wasn't that bad either.

In some ways the fact that the film is a comedy lets them include darker, sadder beats. I won't mention what they are in detail because they constitute spoilers but there are significant moments of grief, some heavy assessment of life goals and the like - things you don't normally see in a movie unless it's a biopic. Here I think they fit nicely into the overall plot and with the overall light-hearted mood they make a good emotional counterpoint heightening their impact in some ways without dragging your mood at the end of the film.

One thing that was fun, Gamora in another film would clear have been set up as the sex interest. In this film, when Quill makes his inevitable move, she whips out her knives and declares that she will not be bewitched by his pelvic sorcerery. This doesn't stop them working together and their relationship developing into trust even as the film continues. That's pretty unusual in any film.

We actually saw an Irish-licensed cut of the film rather than a BBFC one. I don't know if that made a difference but there were points in several action scenes where there were fairly obvious cuts to get the rating which was a shame.

Overall though, it was a fun film.

Bechdel test. Yes. There are at least four named female characters (Gamora, Nebula, Nova Prime and The Collector's slave whose name I can't remember). Gamora and Nebula converse and snipe and I think it's not all about men, although there are some serious Daddy issues in there. Gamora and Nova Prime also have a short conversation.

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