No idea how and why the first Ant-Man movie fell through my filter and was never reviewed in the O@tM column. It somehow just happened to be not happening. Well, just last night me watched the new-ish Ant-Man and the Wasp so this time I’m gonna honour this sideshow Marvel hero with a review all on its own.
In the aftermath of Captain America: Civil War (2016), Scott Lang grapples with the consequences of his choices as both a superhero and a father. As he struggles to rebalance his home life with his responsibilities as Ant-Man, he’s confronted by Hope van Dyne and Dr. Hank Pym with an urgent new mission. Scott must once again put on the suit and learn to fight alongside The Wasp as the team works together to uncover secrets from their past.
I’ve gotta admit my memory of the first Ant-man flick kinda diminished since 2015. Ant-Man’s first outing obviously didn’t leave any deeper impact on me. This is kinda typical, for many of the Marvel movies, just like their fighting scenes, the whole movie was in the featherweight class. Easily consumed, easily forgotten. Not saying there was anything particulaly wrong with it, it’s just as it is and, maybe, me being who I am. I’m most probably both, the wrong gender and the wrong age to be marveling over Marvel Studio movies. Maybe I’m too well educated and too clever (really?) to fully indulge in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe. Hmmm…
By now at least 10 or 12 hours have passed since I’ve watched Ant-Man and the Wasp and I still clearly remember most of it. And I will definately watch it again in the next couple days. Why? Because I liked it. Like I really liked it. The plot was well-constructed and made some sense (in a MCU kinda way, mind you) so one could really enjoy the story as such, without suspending your disbelief too much. Contrary to the lastest Avenger gigantomaniac superduper über movies, AatW played on a relatively small scale, it wasn’t about saving the whole planet and the universe with it but was a personal story, kinda family affair.
This made the move and its dramatis personae kinda sympathetic. Even the antagonists aren’t really super-duper baddies, but they mostly have their strong motives to act the way they do. Of course AatW ain’t a fukn love fest but we get lotsa very decent action and a fast paced story. So, good for me, I’m not forced to hate my fave badgood girl Hannah John-Kamen now. Although she did her best to be a real meaniepooface character in this one. She had her reasons, so her actions are kinda expected and excusable. Likewise her fatherfigure/mentor Laurence Fishburne. He just wants the best for his little girl. 😉
There are some other baddies but they are mostly serving as comedic relieve. As does Michael Pená, who plays Ant-Man Paul Rudd’s business partner/friend. I gotta say tho, he overdid it for my taste and was more silly than funny. In that point I deviate from most other critics as they found him hilarious. But that’s the typical cutural deviation of America from the rest of the world.
All in all the whole ensemble makes a very good impression and plays perfectly into each other. A shame Michelle Pfeiffer was a bit underutilized. I haven’t seen her in ages in any movie, was positively surprised how well she’d aged and would have loved to spend some more time with her. Dunno if they’ve found the fountain of youth in Hollywood but from a certain age on, once you’ve accepted that the screen faves of your youth are old people now, they seem to be frozen in time and don’t age any further, as I saw in Michael Douglas, who played Michelle Pfeiffer’s hubby. He looks the fukn same since … forever. It’s awesome what some freaks with overpowered computers can do. 😉
That brings me to Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly. Rudd is perfect in his kinda anti-hero role as a sloppy but loveable human being and he had great chemistry with Evengeline Lilly, who unfortunately didn’t even look half as good as her “mother” Michelle Pfeiffer.
So what’s to say about AatW without getting into spoilers?
Ah, yes, the inevitable Conclusion: Ant-Man and the Wasp, same as all the other Marvel movies, isn’t an earth shattering movie spectacle. But contrary to most of the others it doesn’t try to be. Ant-Man plays in his (quasi) self-contained, pretty realistic universe, and is utterly charming, which does this franchise good. The movie lived from well fleshed-out characters all around, good acting, cool action and a nifty screenplay with a huge dose of humor and, most important, humanity in it.
Watch it? Wanna have a harmless good time? Grab your pop corn, your beers and … WATCH IT!!!
What YouTube has to say about AatW:
Chris didn’t like it too much.
Jere wasn’t totally convinced neither.
Clarisse felt the burden of Ant-Man being part of the MCU.
Grace was so-so about the movie.
“… self-contained movie.” This guy obviously didn’t wait for the aftercredits scene, which ties Ant-Man nicely into the current state of affairs within the greater Marvellous Cinematographic Universeness.