Has anyone yet figured out what to make of Guardians, Russia’s upcoming superhero film? No? Me neither. The latest trailer for the film is equally befuddling and won’t make up your mind about what it’s really supposed to be – Parody? Satire? Uber-serious? – but it will make you kind of want to see it.
Guardians is basically Russia’s version of Marvel’s Avengers. A group of super-humans who served the Soviet Union are now facing a big bad of their own – a villain who wants to shut down all machinery and take over the world. The trailer implies that this takes place after the fall of the USSR and each member of the team represents a different country in the Soviet Union – though, obviously, not all. Included here is a man who can levitate rocks, a teleporter who fights with scythes, a bear-man with a gun (Get it? Russian? Bear?) and a woman who can become invisible. So…not that much more ridiculous than Avengers, then.
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The first trailer for Guardians made the film look almost parodic, while this one is far more serious. With a portentous English-language voiceover and some not so bad CGI, Guardians gives the impression of being a game attempt at capitalizing on the current popularity of the superhero genre. Is it going to have a really strong undercurrent of propaganda? Definitely. But given that most of Hollywood’s big budget superhero films grapple with American exceptionalism and the issues of world power, it’s somehow no surprise that Russia is getting in on the action.
Guardians will be a chance to see another nation do their thing with a team of superheroes specific to their country of origin, though who knows what the result will actually be. I, for one, am disturbed and intrigued.
Guardians will open in Russia next February, and in the US sometime next year.