Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Parent Guide
There's nothing new in this Marvel movie, except for a sexual expletive and excessive alcohol consumption. Not exactly a franchise upgrade.
Parent Movie Review
Rocket (Bradley Cooper) has always been secretive about his past and the experiments that gave him his unusual size and intelligence. (Seriously, how many talking racoons do you see walking around, even on a spaceship?) But no matter how far Rocket has run, his past has found a way to catch up with him.
A mysterious superbeing called Adam (Will Poulter) is sent to retrieve Rocket and bring him back to the man who made him: The High Evolutionary (Chukwudi Iwuji), a dangerous megalomaniac with a penchant for genetic and cybernetic engineering. Although the Guardians are able to stop Adam from taking Rocket, Rocket is fatally injured in the attack. Attempts to resuscitate him reveal a “kill switch”, a device which will destroy Rocket’s heart if any medical aid is provided without a proprietary code – a code which is kept at a facility used by The High Evolutionary. If the Guardians want to save their friend, they’re going to have to go right into the belly of the beast.
Look, I’m officially Marvel-ed out. You can’t just release half a dozen movies a year and expect me to keep caring. I’m saturated. We’ve reached the lethal dose. There’s only so much brightly-colored digitized mediocrity I’m going to put up with. And while Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.3 is a more palatable effort than something like, say Quantumania, it’s not enough to rekindle any interest I might once have had for this franchise. More to the point, none of these movies need to be over 90 minutes, and all of them seem to be pushing two-and-a-half hours. Absolutely unforgiveable.
This has everything you’d expect from a Guardians movie – the petty bickering, the zany antics, the solid soundtrack – and nothing you haven’t already seen at least twice. They’ve been making the same jokes about these characters this entire time, and it’s not making things any funnier. This movie tries to balance things by filling out Rocket’s traumatic and emotionally intense backstory, but it’s not enough. It just feels like more of the same, now with animal cruelty. Not sure if that’s as appealing as the studio thought it would be.
Speaking of animal cruelty, parents might be distressed to see some of the content concerns that have cropped up. This film is noticeably more violent than most Marvel offerings, with much more graphic scenes of death, torture, and general destruction. It also includes Marvel’s first “f-bomb”, an achievement for which I’m sure we’re all duly proud. I mean, if you count from the first Iron Man movie, this franchise has been around for roughly 15 years – it’s a teenager crying out for attention with provocative language to compensate for the fact that we’re all getting sick of their nonsense.
I’m sure the usual cluster of die-hard Marvel fans will still have a fabulous time, and gladly sit around in the theater for another 15 minutes to chatter over whichever third-rate comic book character is going to crop up in the indulgent post-credit scene. I don’t begrudge them that – by all means, enjoy what you enjoy. Me? I was out of there before the first line of credits hit the top of the screen. I’ve got better things to do with my life than watch a major studio tease information that means nothing to me, and which they’ll just end up explaining in the next movie anyway. Pardon me for not waiting with bated breath.Directed by James Gunn. Starring Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista. Running time: 150 minutes. Theatrical release May 5, 2023. Updated May 18, 2023
Watch the trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3
Rating & Content Info
Why is Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 rated PG-13? Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for intense sequences of violence and action, strong language, suggestive/drug references and thematic elements.
Violence: Individuals are frequently beaten, stabbed, shot, and blown up. There are several scenes depicting surgery and medical procedures, some of which are closer to torture than healthcare. There are references to genocide. An individual’s face is mutilated by an enraged animal. A character suffers extreme freezing and bloating due to vacuum exposure. Several individuals are decapitated.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: There is a single sexual expletive and one scatological curse. There are infrequent mild profanities and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adult characters over-consume alcohol to the point of unconsciousness. Aliens deal an unidentified drug.
Page last updated May 18, 2023
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Fans will already be familiar with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.1 and Vol.2. The Guardians also play a role in the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. Other recent offerings from the Marvel cinematic universe include Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Thor: Love and Thunder, and Spider-Man: No Way Home.