Written by Anthony Tyson 7/19/2015
A lot of hype has been built up around Marvel movies lately. They have had an amazing last few years, and It makes complete sense that people have bought in to the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) with hits like: Captain America: Winter Soldier, Avengers, and the surprise hit, Gaurdians of the Galaxy. Ant-Man was a surprise when Marvel announced it, and a lot of people were skeptical of a movie featuring a relatively unknown character to the mainstream audience. With the announcement that fan favorite director Edgar Wright was to be replaced with the relatively unknown comedy director Payton Reed, fans were very nervous with this project. Marvel does like taking risks however, and as I entered the theater to see the movie, I had some doubt and some hope accordingly. Coming out of the movie however, I now understand why Marvel had such faith in this film.
Set after the events of Avengers 2, Ant-Man stars Paul Rudd as Scott Lang, a thief who was imprisoned after stealing funds illegally obtained by a multi-million dollar company. After being released from prison, Paul Rudd meets Hank Pym (played by Michael Douglas), who was the original Ant-Man. Hank recruits Scott to steal a prototype shrinking suit from the company he created, which is now being run by his former apprentice, Darren Cross. Using the shrinking suit, and some hep from Hank Pym’s daughter Hope (played by Evangeline Lily), they attempt to steal back the prototype suit to prevent it from being released into the wrong hands. I wont spoil the complete story, but everything made sense, and it's one of the strongest stories to date, featuring some great hilarity along the way.
On top of the well crafted story, the action scenes in the movie are incredible. Watching Scott use the suit to shrink and enlarge to fight people is just really fun to watch. This also allows for fight scenes to have a lot of variety and hilarity, as Scott also has the ability to shrink and enlarge other objects as well. On top of that, he also can communicate with and control ants, adding yet another layer to the variety of abilities he already possesses. All in all, the movie is really fun to watch, and the CGI they employed really worked.
The actors also had some excellent dialogue in this film. Paul Rudd and (surprisingly) Michael Pena have some great moments in the film, and Pena is actually quite hilarious throughout. Michael Douglas also does no wrong, and his scenes with Evangeline Lily also add a lot of great depth and heart to this film. Despite the fact that the movie didn't take itself too seriously, I never had any moments where I thought "this is too cheesy". The characters having the ability to be like “wait, what the hell is that?”, in the movie, allows the audience to really suspend their disbelief in the somewhat crazy antics of the movie. It enhances the already stellar pacing of the movie, and it makes for a film that you lose track of time in. Overall, the audience just gets absorbed in every scene on the screen.
I had a really great time with this movie, and it just adds to the already stellar credibility Marvel has established with mainstream audiences and fans alike. Considering my somewhat lukewarm feelings with Avengers 2, I think it's going to be these more risky projects from Marvel that movie goers will really enjoy. The fact that these movies somewhat have an element of surprise, as Gaurdians did last year, means that they have a much higher chance of gravitating with audiences compared to the straight-up blockbuster films that feature the main characters. The last thing I ought to mention, is that Ant-Man features some excellent after credit scenes at end that set up the next film in the MCU: Civil War. Please, do yourself a favor, and stay after the credits! I still catch some people who get up and leave after the credits, and you just miss out on some excellent subtext when you do that.
A must see film for all audiences. Go see this movie now!