Ant-Man and the Wasp Movie Review
Just after seeing Ant-Man and The Wasp in Cinemas I have to admit that it’s been a pretty good year for Marvel at the movies.
Paul Rudd is back as Scott Lang a former criminal turned accidental hero. Scott’s had a bit of a rough time as of late and is coming to the end of two years under house arrest. He’s kept on a tight leash and is just trying to keep his head down until he’s free to walk the streets again. That is until Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) comes knocking on his door again. Reluctantly Scott is sucked back into becoming Ant-Man in order to help Hope and her father (Michael Douglas) on a mission to save her mother and outsmart the villains hot on their tails (Walton Goggins and Hannah John-Kamen). Oh, and the FBI wants to put them all behind bars. Needless to say, this is Ant-Man’s biggest adventure yet.
Unfortunately, Ant-Man and the Wasp is a Marvel movie that starts to rely too much on people having seen the other films of the MCU. It makes a number of references to Captain America: Civil War and Scott Lang’s involvement in the events of that film. Of course, it also helps to have seen the first Ant-Man movie too so you know who these characters are and what in the heck that Quantum Realm is (then again, I still don’t really even know what it is). Then, of course, there’s also the tie into Avengers: Infinity War. While I appreciate Marvel trying to tie all their film together into one epic universe, the fact that you have to sit through over six hours of movies in order to truly grasp all the nuances in their newest film is a bit daunting. Personally, it’s not an issue for me, but I figured I would offer a heads up to the more casual Marvel movie fans out there.
So, why wasn’t Ant-Man in Infinity War? Well, I’m not going to completely spoil that for you, other than to say that you should definitely stick around through the credits to find out what he was up to. My theory is that Paul Rudd and Chris Pratt together in one movie would have been one joker too many. In a lot of ways, they are very similar heroes. Of course, Pratt is one of the heavy hitters in Hollywood right now, but I have to say that Rudd plays the fish out of water hero much better overall. Scott Lang is pretty much a professional screw up despite the fact that he’s utterly brilliant. The fact that he has no idea what he’s doing though, and fully acknowledges it, makes him one of the better heroes in the MCU right now. I mean, there’s no way Ant-Man on his own could compete with Captain America, Thor or Iron Man? Well, you make him the most human of them all and that’s Ant-Man and the Wasp gets right.
Marvel has seriously been upping their game with their female heroes. They’ve come a long way from just having Black Widow in their ranks and have some truly badass ladies from Valkyrie (Thor: Ragnarok) to Okoye (Black Panther). Now Evangeline Lilly’s Wasp gets to join them. In fact, she’s so badass in this movie that it feels a lot more like Ant-Man is her sidekick. While we got to see some pretty awesome uses of shrinking powers in the first film, but this movie really ups the ante. The Wasp manages to take groups of baddies apart in absolutely astounding displays of grace and brutality. Honestly, the men of the MCU are going to have to watch out at this rate, because the women are proving to be much cooler as of late.
What makes Ant-Man and The Wasp really shine though is that it is absolutely side-splitting. Of course, Paul Rudd is well known for his endearing charisma and sense of humor on the big screen, but this time around he’s got plenty of other capable comedians working with him. Luckily audience favorite Luis (Michael Peña) is back with his comrades (T.I. and David Dastmalchian), and they’re all back in great form. Joining them though is one of my favorite supporting actors, Randall Park, joins them and practically steals the show. He plays an FBI agent who is essentially a huge puppy dog throwing around words like “malarkey” and “dickens.” All together, they round out a cast that manages to make Ant-Man and the Wasp a comedy to rival even Guardians of the Galaxy in the MCU.
While Ant-Man and the Wasp might be a comedy at heart, it is still very much an action film. Director Peyton Reed manages to make small powerful in some outstanding uses of the shrinking powers Ant-Man posses. There are car chases, fight sequences, and even a few death-defying stunts. Altogether, it feels like this sequel really embraces the potential that the original laid out. Best of all Ant-Man and The Wasp feels like it steps outside the mold that most Marvel movies feel like they’re vacuum sealed into these days. Sure, it’s an action comedy like so many of them, but it’s just a ton of fun and doesn’t feel quite like an all-out superhero movie at heart. So, if you’re looking for a great movie to see in theaters, be sure to check out this awesome flick.