Ant-Man: The Antastic Review
Marvel Studios finally brings the last of the original Avengers to screen with a bite sized new offering in Ant-Man. So how did the studio giant’s latest offering fare? Find out in my review.
Ant-Man tells the story of Scott Lang, master criminal, fresh out of prison and ready to restart his life with his daughter; only problem is he can’t bounce back. With his criminal background making it all but impossible for Scott to keep a job, he goes back to his profession of burglary. His first stint back into heists brings him to Hank Pym, original Ant Man. The Ant-Man suit gives the wearer the ability to shrink while enhancing their strength, as well as being able to communicate with ants. Hank wants Scott to use the Ant-Man suit to break into his old facility and you can probably guess where the story goes from there.
Here in lies the problem with Ant-Man; it’s incredibly bland. How bland is it? It’s the RC Cola of Marvel movies. The look of the film, the character tropes, story beats, the cookie cutter score, all of it you just expect from these films. I walked out of the movie feeling slightly entertained but a little irritated to watch regurgitated ideas once again. I’m just so ridiculously tired of Marvel with their one dimensional villains who are bad because reasons? It’s so boring.
The Marvel Studios Blockbuster Formula
Despite the problems I have with the story end of the movie, there are some spectacular aspects of the movie. The true star is the visual effects. This movie is gorgeous. Whenever the screen goes into the shrink mode, you can really see where that 130 million dollar price tag came from. When we are shrunk down with Scott, every mini environment looks photorealistic; it’s absolutely stunning. Another aspect that I greatly enjoyed was the pacing. The pacing is so fast that once the credits rolled, I seriously thought the movie was only on for an hour.
Another factor Ant-Man has at its disposal is a fantastic cast (had to resist so bad not to say ANTASTIC, will put in title instead). Paul Rudd brings a disgusting amount of that classic Ruddiness charm. Even Jeff Winger will enjoy him as Scott Lang. The always wonderful Michael Pena steals the show as one of Scott’s friends and collaborators. I wouldn’t mind a little Michael Pena in every movie I see. Michael Douglas is pretty much Michael Douglas in wacky scientist mode. Unfortunately Evangeline Lily gets nothing to do this go around, which is one of this movies biggest missteps. I can’t tell you how badly I want to see Wasp entire the MCU. Corey Stoll is the aforementioned one dimensional villain with no purpose or reason aka the typical Marvel villain. Bobby Cannavale is also criminally underused.
It’s also worth mentioning is Ant-Man holds some wonderful nods and easter eggs to other heroes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Much to my surprise an Avenger plays an important role in this film and I’m very pleasantly surprised that they chose to keep that secret until right before the movie came out. Be sure to stick around for both the mid and post credits stingers.
I kept my feelings about the Edgar Wright situation out of my experience for the film, but I must say, my heart wonders what could have been. Perhaps with a master like him at the helm it would have felt fresher to me. Regardless, Ant-Man is an entertaining one and done flick, with ant sized spurts of genius.
What are your thoughts on the bite sized hero? Let me know in the comments section!