With Marvel Studios and DC Entertainment both being go-to powerhouses when it comes to big-budget superhero blockbuster spectacle, it should come as no surprise that the basic superhero movie formula would be copied by international studios. Directed by the Armenian filmmaker Sarik Andreasyan, Guardians is a Russian superhero movie that looks to be an off-brand capitalization on some of the same elements that make domestic releases such as The Avengers and the upcoming Justice League substantial box office draws.
Guardians revolves around a team of four Soviet Union-era superheroes who were created during the Cold War and represent different nationalities and core traditions of the USSR. The film is a bit of a black sheep when it comes to aping the thematic tradition established by the likes of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and DC Extended Universe, in the States. For better or for worse, Andreasyan’s film is a marvel in its own right, and the production’s first official domestic trailer (see above) is now online.
In the footage featured above, distributor turbofilms promises plenty of hyperbolic action sequences to match the likes of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and the DCEU, in addition to certain intimated sequences of governmental diplomacy reminiscent of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the MCU. Despite suffering from some potentially distracting English language voice-over dubbing, Guardians looks to fill the gap when it comes to producing superhero movies created outside of an American national identity.
Granted, Andreasyan’s new film doesn’t look to hold much inherent novelty for those already thoroughly invested in the likes of the MCU and/or DCEU, but it does offer something of a cinematic attraction in the same vein as this summer’s Sharknado: The 4th Awakens. It might not be as pretty as some of its superhero movie brethren, but Guardians does look like a lot of fun, so long as the viewer doesn’t take anything about the production too seriously.
It remains to be seen whether or not Guardians will live up to the likes of the MCU and the DCEU in terms of overt aesthetic style. However, there is little doubt that the movie will be the center of some conversation given its direct ties to the superhero sub-genre in general. A “Russian version of The Avengers” might not be exactly what anyone might have asked for, but the film will see theatrical release later next year nevertheless.
Guardians will see theatrical release in the U.S. sometime in 2017. It opens in Russia on February 23rd, 2017.