Superhero movies are in vogue these days. Superheroes teaming up to save the world even more so. After Marvel’s massively successful experiments with The Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy, DC has also jumped into the fray with its Extended Universe (DCEU) and is going to release Justice League this year based on the famous superhero ensemble. Three top Justice League members have already fought together in financially successful but critically panned Batman vs Superman. Turns out, Russia too tried its hand at its own version of Avengers. Armenian filmmaker Sarik Andreasyan released Guardians earlier this year which involved four superhumans belonging to different parts of the erstwhile Soviet Union uniting to save present day Russia from a threat that has disabled the military establishment of the country. The film is now going to be released in the US by entertainment company Shout Factory on September 5, 2017.
The four Cold War era superheroes, created by a governmental organisation called Patriot in a super soldier sort of programme, have really cool and distinctive special abilities. The superhero team, the Guardians as they are called, were those that could still be found. There is Ler, who can manipulate rocks and boulders and throw them on bad guys. There is Khan, a kind of Flash with scimitar like curved swords. Kseniya, a martial artist who can become invisible. And then there is the final Guardian, and easily the most fun of all, a manbear (or bearman) called Ursus who can transform into a ferocious grizzly bear and spray bullets from a machine gun. The bad guy here is a mad scientist, August Kuratov, a disgruntled ex-employee of Patriot, intent on ruling the world. In the trailer below you can see Khan in action.
As you can see, the plot is not terribly original, even though the superheroes sound interesting. The film was utterly rejected by Russian critics and also tanked at the box office after some initial success. The visual effects and CGI were also said to be below par. But what do we know? We are probably spoiled by American movies with their money and their technical excellence. Guardians might still appeal to those who are looking for something different – a superhero team movie based in Russia for instance. Whatever critics may say, Guardians has certainly got the superheroes right. In any case, you can decide for yourself