Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (PG-13) (live-action/CGI)
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Caution: potential spoilers.
This is the sequel to Guardians of the Galaxy, and the fifteenth movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It came out in May 2017, but I didn't see it until November 2019. (But one thing I did see around the time the movie came out was a Geico commercial featuring that company's Gecko and this movie's baby Groot.)
I suppose first I should mention that near the end of the first movie, Groot had apparently sacrificed his life, but a part of him lived on as a baby sapling. (I guess Baby Groot is sort of the original Groot's son, or something.) Anyway, he's still quite small in this movie, but he definitely has a lot of fun, especially in the opening scene, where the other Guardians are battling a giant monster. They had been hired by Ayesha, the high priestess of a race called the Sovereign, to stop the monster from stealing their incredibly powerful (and valuable) Anulax batteries. Their payment is Gamora's sister, Nebula, whom they had previously caught trying to steal from them. However, Rocket ends up stealing some of the batteries after they've defeated the monster, so Ayesha sends a fleet to chase them. (The Sovereign genetically manipulate their offspring to be essentially perfect, or whatever, so they see other races as inferior. That's why they didn't fight the monster themselves, and why their ships are piloted remotely. And it really seems as if they see the space battle, in which they're trying to kill the Guardians, as nothing more than a video game. There's even Pac-Man sound effects, which I thought was a nice touch.)
Oh, wait. Did I say that was the opening scene? Actually, before that, there was a scene on Earth, in 1980. We see Meredith Quill and her boyfriend (played by Kurt Russell) driving around together, and then the boyfriend (whose name we won't learn til later) takes her into the woods to show her something, like an alien plant or whatever. The movie then flashes forward to the present, and the scene I already described. The Guardians end up crash landing on a nearby planet, after having been saved from the Sovereign fleet by someone who follows them down to the planet and introduces himself as Peter Quill's father, Ego. He's a "Celestial," a godlike being, and it seems he's passed at least some of his power on to Quill. He takes Quill, Gamora, and Drax back to his home planet- which he had created himself- while Rocket and Groot stay behind to fix their own ship. (They seem to have a very convenient tool for dong that without much effort, but it will still take awhile.)
Meanwhile, we see Yondu and his crew of Ravagers hanging out in a bar or whatever, and another Ravager named Stakar Ogord (Sylvester Stallone) comes in. Yondu greets him as an old friend and comrade, but Stakar feels very differently about Yondu, who had been exiled from the larger Ravager community, for a reason I don't want to get into. After Stakar leaves, Yondu is approached by Ayesha, who hires him to track down the Guardians and bring them to her, to be killed. Yondu and his crew go to the planet where the Guardians had crashed, and after an intense battle against Rocket and Groot, the Ravagers finally capture them. But Yondu doesn't want to hand them (or Quill, who is like a son to him) over to the Sovereign. This prompts his lieutenant, Taserface, to lead a mutiny against Yondu and anyone who was loyal to him. (Rocket has a lot of fun mocking Taserface about his name. And the day after I watched this movie, I changed the name of a Zweilous I had in my current play-through of Pokemon Black, from Tiamat to Taserface.) I also need to mention that Yondu's assistant (or second in command, I dunno), Kraglin (Sean Gunn), was among the mutineers, but he soon came to regret that. His role in the first movie had been much smaller than it was in this one. In fact, by the time I watched this movie, I didn't even remember he'd been in the first one. For that matter, I also didn't remember that Nebula had been in the first movie, and her role was likewise expanded in this one.
Anyway, back on Ego's planet, we learn more about his origins, and his plans for the future. We also get to know an assistant of his named Mantis, who has buglike antennae that apparently have something to do with empathic powers. She becomes particularly close to Drax. Also, throughout the movie, Quill continues to show a romantic interest in Gamora, which she doesn't reciprocate. And... a lot of other stuff happens which I don't want to spoil. Of course there's a major battle against a certain enemy. And there are bonus scenes throughout the closing credits. And I'm sure lots of the stuff I'm not mentioning will have an impact in future MCU movies. So I may end up mentioning some of the events of this movie whenever I get around to watching and reviewing those movies. For now, I'll just say I thought the movie was awesome in a lot of ways, and it's very amusing as well as dramatic. And awesome.