Almost everything about “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” (Marvel Studios), the sequel to the insanely popular 2014 Guardians of the Galaxy, is a joke. In other words, there are practically as many laughs as there are 3D special effects. The second film in the series attempts to answer questions raised in the earlier movie while also advancing the story of the Guardians – muscly Peter (Chris Pratt), green Gamora (Zoe Saldana), randy raccoon Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper), spry sprout Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel) and tattooed and bald Drax (Dave Bautista).
In the midst of what looks like a losing battle with the Sovereign fleet, the Guardians are saved by Ego and his empath sidekick Mantis (Pom Klementieff). Unfortunately, their ship is seriously damaged. While Rocket, Groot and Gamora’s wicked and vengeful sister Nebula (Karen Gillan) stay behind for repairs, Ego whisks Peter, Gamora and Drax away to his amazing planet. It’s there that he reveals his paternal identity to Peter. Meanwhile, a team of ruthless bounty hunters, led by Yondu (Michael Rooker), take Rocket and Groot hostage.
Making matters worse is maniacal Ego’s deadly intentions for his son, as well as world domination. Lightening the mood considerably is the “unspoken thing” between Peter and Gamora, the high-flying snark attacks delivered by Rocket and Drax, and more “Awesome Mixtape” tunes on a vintage Sony Walkman than you ever thought could fit on a 120-minute cassette tape. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 would have been even better with about 25 minutes shaved off, but all in all it’s, you know, out of this world entertainment. Rating: B