By: Akram Shaban
Ant-Man stars Paul Rudd as Scott Lang/Ant-Man, Michael Douglas as Dr. Hank Pym, Evangeline Lilly as Hope van Dyne, and Corey Stoll as Darren Cross/Yellow Jacket. It’s the type of movie you think they made because Marvel still doesn’t have the rights to Spider-Man and the X-Men. But Ant-Man is also relevant. I think he’s a more enjoyable superhero than Thor. He’s also not as self-righteously American as Captain umm you know the rest. He’s just an ordinary super genius activist heist robber who just wants to be a good father…you know, like the rest of us. But that’s what makes Scott Lang such a good character; he’s ridiculously outrageous and idiotic, but also talented and good.
Just like Deadpool’s perfect match with Ryan Reynolds, Paul Rudd fits the Scott Lang persona just right. Every circumstance he gets himself into can be turned into a joke. It’s a movie where the protagonist is the comic relief. And it allows for a much-needed interruption of cringe-y forced emotional scenes. Imagine if you could watch some drama and just pop into the screen and make some snarky remarks. That is what Scott Lang is in Ant-Man, and it works just right.
If you read my Captain America: The First Avenger review, then you know that I have a formula for a good origin story. That formula is the result of a very rigorous and intense research and thinking that took place within a period of five seconds. The producers of Ant-Man decided to go a slightly different route than that of Cap 1. As we may recall, the “getting used to” the new powers aspect of the first act is a major aspect of the criteria. While Cap 1 spent only a brief period of time on that part, Ant-Man dedicated a lot more time to it. Each approach worked very well in both cases. Captain America’s powers are pretty straight forward. It is the morality of Steve Rogers that truly makes up his Character. In Ant-Man, there is a lot of emphasis on the technology, history, and logic behind the suit. It requires a lot of training to truly master its usage. Thus, more screen time is needed to make sense of Ant-Man’s powers.
I normally criticize the usage of CGI in movies, but Ant-Man is a work of art when it comes to computer graphics. Something about beholding normally tiny objects as massive structures is very intriguing. And while I may be no science junky, I feel like a lot of the physics of tiny things was nailed as well. It’s not entirely unbelievable that if a human being was the size of an ant, it would be relatively easy to lift big objects, and withstand steep falls. Incorporating the armies of ants, and the different species was also seamless. Somehow, a movie got me to develop an emotional attachment to a CGI ant. RIP Anthony.
Best of all, the movie does not take itself too seriously. The presence of T.I and Michael Peña as part of Scott’s crew proves that statement. They were there simply for the comical advancement of the plot. The small tangents that Peña would go on and the lip-syncing was just lighthearted fun. The movie knows what it is, and why it exists. I’m glad to see that the MCU is developing into a genre of its own, with various subgenres incorporated into it. Ant-Man is a heist movie. I wouldn’t be surprised if they made a drama sitcom featuring Tony Stark and Steve Rogers. Actually, I would be surprised.
Ant-Man is my kind of lighthearted fun that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Nailing that concept, Ant-Man receives a grade of B (7.8/10) from The Film Lawyers.