When the James Gunn-directed Guardians of the Galaxy was released in August 2014, it came with low expectations, but high stakes. If it worked, Marvel would successfully establish a universe where space was a conceivable destination, and fantastical characters like a talking raccoon and a walking tree were acceptable (and marketable). If it failed, there would undoubtedly be some changes in their game plan.
So, when people fell in love with Chris Pratt (and the raccoon and the tree), the impact spread like wildfire. The lighthearted comedy, nostalgic soundtrack, and the introduction of previously unfamiliar characters helped the film become one of the highest-grossing films of the year and one of the studio’s most well-received films to date.
In honor of the recent one-year anniversary of the release, here are some of the quotes from Guardians of the Galaxy that made the world fall in love with these charming space dirtbags.
“Oh, I’m sorry. I don’t know how this machine works…” – Peter Quill
You can never have too many good middle finger jokes. There’s the classic draw-bridge, the “what’s in my pocket?” and now we have the broken machine from the mind of the rebellious Peter Quill himself.
“I am Groot.” – Groot
Vin Diesel got paid however many millions of dollars to say three – actually five – words. But, somehow, it didn’t get boring or nearly as annoying as you would think. If it helps, to earn his money’s worth, Diesel learned how to say his catchphrase in multiple languages.
“I know who you are, Peter Quill, and I am not some starry-eyed waif here to succumb to your… your pelvic sorcery!” – Gamora
From the first time they saw each other, it was clear that Peter and Gamora were going to catch feelings of some sort. The questions were if they would act on them and how? Lo and behold, Peter made that first move, and it does not go well.
“You’re making me beat up grass!” – Rocket Raccoon
Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) was pint-sized damaged goods, and viewers couldn’t help but get invested in his problems. His random bursts of anger are very destructive, but at least he’s fairly self-aware. He knows that he shouldn’t lash out violently, like kicking random patches of grass with no concern for the eco-system, but his animal urges usually win out.
“The only matter I do not take seriously, boy, is you. Your politics bore me! Your demeanor is that of a pouting child. And, apparently, you alienated my favorite daughter, Gamora. I shall honor our agreement, Kree, if you bring me the Orb. But return to me again empty-handed, and I will bathe the star-ways with your blood.” – Thanos
We FINALLY get to see Thanos, the real big baddie of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, do something besides glare off into space in this Marvel outing. Even before getting his hands on the Infinity Gauntlet, he’s an imposing figure, so don’t underestimate his ability to bathe entire star-ways (a galactic highway?) with the blood of his enemies.
“Now, this is important. Once the battery is removed, everything is gonna slam into emergency mode. Once we have it, we gotta move quickly, so you definitely need to get that last… Or we could just get it first and improvise!” – Rocket Raccoon
Improvisation, the best tool for anyone who wants to excel in anything. Things rarely go as planned, so you need to know how to think on your toes, especially when the absolute last thing you needed to happen happens first.
“Nothing goes over my head! My reflexes are too fast, I would catch it.” – Drax the Destroyer
… Okay, this one is just on Drax. Not understanding the use of metaphors and similes really restricts what you can say to someone. It’s probably wisest to use the clearest language possible when dealing with a humorless killing machine like Drax.
“I have lived most of my life surrounded by my enemies. I would be grateful to die surrounded by my friends.” – Gamora
Gamora’s life before Guardians of the Galaxy could probably be a movie in itself. She was adopted by the same man responsible for destroying her family and had to keep her silence for years, all while coming up with a plan to get her revenge. Doesn’t that sound like a great story? Honestly, each of the Guardians has a rich enough backstory to warrant a prequel film. Get on it, Marvel!
“WE are Groot.” – Groot
What’s more shocking, that a tree could talk or that Vin Diesel could make you cry with only three words? I already knew that Groot could grow back, but even I thought this may have been the end for him for a couple seconds there. His sacrifice was all for a just cause, however… the “we” who are “Groot.”
“Well, now I’m standing. Happy? We’re all standing now. Bunch of jackasses, standing in a circle.” – Rocket Raccoon
Guardians showed us how awkward it can be in the moment after a big movie speech.
Peter Quill: “What should we do next? Something good, something bad? Bit of both?”
Gamora: “We’ll follow your lead, Star-Lord.”
Peter Quill: “A bit of both!”
There you have it: The Guardians of the Galaxy are somewhere between honest heroes and self-interested adventurers who do whatever it takes to get the job done. It should be interesting to see what they’ve gotten themselves involved in since the end of this movie when Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is released in 2017.