Have you got your retro playlist ready? Because you can now book your Cineworld tickets for Marvel Studios' Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. The rocking outer-space brigade is back on the big screen this May in what promises to be a rousing big-screen spectacular. Here's why you need to secure your seat immediately.
1 It might be the Guardians' final solo movie...
We don't know for sure if the Guardians will be back for a fourth installment, so let's enjoy the intergalactic oddballs while we can, right? Even if the Guardians are folded in with the Marvel Phase 6 plans for Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and Avengers: Secret Wars (and that seems highly likely), this might be the last time they hog the spotlight all to themselves, replete with the neuroses and bickering that we've come to love.
It's hard to believe that the first Guardians movie arrived in 2014 with relatively little fanfare, only to blow us away with its quirky humour, heart and fantastic soundtrack. However, it was the characters that anchored the whole thing, principally Chris Pratt's rogueishly charming Peter Quill/Star-Lord. He acted as our entryway into a memorably bizarre yet loveable sector of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, a feat later achieved in 2017's Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, which enjoyed even greater levels of box office success.
Hopes are high that the third movie will be a rousing summation of everything we love about this endearing Marvel misfits.
2. ... But it's definitely James Gunn's final Marvel movie
We do know for sure that Guardians lynchpin James Gunn is saying goodbye to the characters he helped cement in the popular consciousness. Gunn's background in idiosyncratic horror-comedy translated perfectly into the surrealistic Guardians universe, albeit laced with considerably more heart than his darker, more adult-oriented films.
Gunn took several distinctly B-level Marvel characters and transformed them into the rock stars of the MCU. It was a tremendous achievement and it is, therefore, poignant, that Guardians Vol. 3 will be the last time he undertakes the experiment before transferring over to DC. He's now cemented as the rival studio's new creative chief and he's planning to give the DC Universe a makeover.
So, in the meantime, let's revel in Gunn's collage of colour and retro music, not to mention his obvious love of outcast characters who are recognised for their humanity and warmth rather than their outward appearance.
3. It introduces Will Poulter as Adam Warlock...
Remember the post-credits stinger of Guardians Vol. 2? Well, let us recap it for you. It teased the reveal of the genetically engineered Adam Warlock, although we never got to see his face. Now, some six years after the events of that movie, this fan-favourite character is set to explode onto the screen to the delight of Marvel fans.
Marvel Comics character Adam was originally created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, first appearing in Fantastic Four #66–67 (cover-dates September 1967 and October 1967) and Thor #163–166 (April–July 1969). In the comics, Adam was created by human scientists and possessed extraordinary cosmic powers. However, the Guardians Vol. 2 teaser promised a tweak to his origins.
At the end of the movie, we see Debicki's character Ayesha, leader of the alien race the Sovereigns, as she unveils a mysterious program for genetic engineering. She then explains: "Every citizen is born exactly as designed by the community... Impeccable, both physically and mentally. We control the DNA of our progeny, germinating them in birthing pods." Said pod is then revealed, which houses the unseen "Adam", as she dubs him. Whether the movie version of Adam will be a force of good or evil remains to be seen.
However, with the versatile Poulter (Son of Rambow; Detroit) playing him, we're bound to get an expressive and memorable take on the character.
4. ... While reuniting us with all the old favourites
We've already mentioned Chris Pratt's incorrigible Star-Lord but as Guardians fans know, there are several different tracks on this mixtape, to coin an Awesome Mix analogy. In addition, we're reunited with Dave Bautista's irony-free bruiser Drax, Bradley Cooper's sardonic Rocket Racoon, Vin Diesel's linguistically-limited Groot, Karen Gillan's biomechanical Nebula, Pom Klementieff's empathic Mantis and Sean Gunn's (brother of James) Kraglin.
There's more than enough oddness and character backstory amidst that delightfully wacky ensemble to channel several Marvel movies. However, the most intriguing return is assigned to Zoe Saldana's Gamora whose existence has been entirely shattered and re-shaped by the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. Will Star-Lord be able to convince her that they once had a good thing going on?
5. You can expect a thrilling continuation of the events in Avengers: Endgame...
As mentioned, we pick up with Zoe Saldana's Gamora who must reckon with the fact that her adoptive father Thanos (Josh Brolin) killed her during the universe-obliterating events of the Infinity Saga. This is what compelled Star-Lord to snap in a fit of rage when he and several other Avengers had succeeded in incapacitating Thanos, setting in motion the latter's success in gathering all the Infinity Stones and wiping out 50% of all life in the universe.
An alternate version of Gamora was then restored via the timey-wimey Quantum Realm machinations of the Avengers as they deployed the time stone to undo Thanos' actions. It will undoubtedly be intriguing to see Gamora reconciling with the Guardians as the gaps in her memory are filled in.
At the same time, we're set to explore Rocket's tormented past. The trailer implies that Rocket comes to terms with the experimental surgeries that turned him into an animalistic badass, a tragic history that connects directly to new villain the High Evolutionary (more on whom below).
6. ... While at the same time, we advance even further into Marvel Phase 5
Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania set Marvel Phase 5 in motion. Guardians Vol. 3 is set to pick up the baton by introducing a multitude of new characters that may point towards the future of the franchise. In addition to Will Poulter's Adam Warlock, we're presented with new villain the High Evolutionary, played by actor Chukwudi Iwuji. The character is implied to be responsible for experimenting on Rocket Racoon and several other animals, including talking dog Cosmo (voiced by Maria Bakalova).
Might he extend his influence throughout the remainder of Phase 5 and Phase 6? We'll have to wait and see. Either way, Gunn has promised that Adam Warlock will become a fixture in the MCU as it moves forward, so we look forward to seeing what Will Poulter will do with the character.
Are you ready? Then hit the link below to claim your tickets for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.