Guardians of the Galaxy (Disney, 8.1) looks fairly awful if not ludicrous, but it’s been directed and co-written by James Gunn, whose Super (’11) I admired after catching it at 2011 South by Southwest, so it’s probably wiser to wait and see. I only know that my first reaction was to feel sorry for Chris Pratt, whose performance as an insecure catcher-turned-first baseman was one of Moneyball‘s finest. He needed a paycheck role and he took this, but where’s the dignity? A pretty good cast — Zoe Saldana, Dave “who?” Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, Djimon Hounsou, John C. Reilly, Glenn Close and Benicio del Toro…they all took their checks and cashed them. The August 1st release date suggests…aaahh, maybe it doesn’t suggest anything. Except that the rule of thumb is that all real-deal, balls-to-the-wall, guns-blazing summer escapist flicks usually come out in May, June or July.