Clearly they intended this to be more than just another comic movie and it takes some big swings. Maybe a bit convoluted and overreaching.
Revisiting before diving into Peacemaker.
The thing that is most impressive, besides Gunn making a movie work with even lesser characters than GotG, is the great chemistry and camaraderie the team exudes as well as the pathos these scumbags evoke. The bus and night club scenes do not feel forced or unearned, and the one death not played for laughs is genuinely affecting.
Stands side-by-side with Cameron's own T2 as a sequel that improves upon its predecessor. Cameron's ramped up approach as well as the inclusion of several of his regular players combine to make this a near perfect action flick. Of course, much like real life, the true monsters here aren't the hulking beasts that bleed acid but corporate greed and lack of oversight.
I'll need to revisit the Director's Cut soon to determine my preferred version, as I realized on this…
If the sequels were guilty of shoving their metaphorical heads up their own asses, this one sews its own face to its navel for nearly the first hour; there is enough restraint to keep Keanu from looking down the barrel and saying "pretty meta, right?" Eventually the movie turns into some interesting territory and the final setpiece is damn impressive, especially once the "bombs" start dropping. Ironically, Trinity on a motorcycle nearly bored me (back) to sleep in Reloaded!