Ant-Man and the Wasp
**WARNING: This blog contains spoilers for Ant-Man and the Wasp and possibly other films**
The sequel to the 2015 film Ant-Man, Scott Lang is under house arrest following the events of Captain America: Civil War. He cuts a plea deal with the government and is under house arrest for two years. Meanwhile Hank Pym and his Daughter Hope while on the run from the FBI, open up a tunnel to the “The Quantum Realm”. The micro-verse that Scott had been to and where Janet van Dyne, Hope’s mom and the original wasp, gets trapped nearly 30 years ago. This happened when she shrinks down to particle size to stop a Soviet nuclear missile by getting in-between the missle’s plating. She leaves a message with Scott while the tunnel is open who she is quantumly entangled with from the events of Ant-Man. Hank and Hope take Scott only a few days out from being released with the hope of getting Janet out of the quantum zone.
This film had its work cut out for it. It did have to follow-up The Avengers: Infinity War that came out about two months prior. The major plot seemed to focus on getting Janet out of the quantum realm. No major villains (kind of) to speak of or a world domination plot. It was more grounded like Spiderman: Homecoming, where the villain wasn’t trying to take over the world, but a man trying to make a living for his family. Its simpler and might be needed after how deep and intense Infinity War was. Ant-Man and the Wasp. Felt more like help someone out Vs stopping them.
I liked how Scott was trying to do right for Hank and Hope but at the same time, had to balance with being there for his daughter and not get caught be the FBI. I felt that Hope and Hank were justifiably harsh on him. He had left with letting them know and risked giving away Hank’s technology if he was caught with it. It set up the disconnect from each other. Also, Paul Rudd’s comedic style is great for Scott Lang.
While Hope was in the last movie, this movie she seems to break out and expand her character. She was not as restrained as in the first movie by Hank and I wondered if she was this good, what was Hank really worried about? Her fight in the hotel at the beginning was awesome and a great start of the new character. Speaking of Hank, Michael Douglas does a great job with Hank Pym again. I loved the quips and comebacks he had to Scott throughtout the movie. I also like the conecpt of his “mobile lab” with wheels. It’s his lab which he shrinks down to the size and style of a carry on brief case. It’s really cool.
Ghost or Ava Starr was an alright villain and nowhere near Killmonger from Black Panther or Adrian from Spider-Man: Homecoming in terms of character motivation or back story. In the comic, Ghost is a male, but I think this is a better fit being a female character. She is trying to get back to a physical state befire she loses control and disspears for good. The movie showed a scene of how her Father Elihas Starr was working on quantum experiment and was killed with his wife. Ava survived, but in a constant unstable state giving her the ghost like power she has. I was wondering why was his wife and child were at a dangerous experiment to begin with and not at home or far away from there? Her plan is to get Pym’s lab and take Janet’s quantum enegry to fix her, possibly killing her in the process. She doesn’t succeed but when she is about to fade away, Janet after getting out of the Quantium Zone with Hank, gives energy to Ghost to stablize her. It kind of felt too “deus ex machina” for me and made me wonder why Ghost just didn’t resuce her or kidnap her as well.
Some other minor characters were Luis, Scott’s former cell mate turned business partner who helped save the “truth serum” scene for me at a story point that I thought didn’t need to be in the film. Dave and Kurt members of X-Con security crew and former heist partners of Scott and Luis. They didn’t have much of a role than to be a comic foil for a comic foil. Bill Foster, former partner to Hank and college professor. Played by Laurence Fischburne well. A minor antagonist Sonny Birch, who was supplying Hank with the technology that he needed until he double crossed him. Cassie, Scott’s daughter who seems to act more grown up than her father, and his reason to keep going. The only characters that should have been left out where Maggie, Scott’s ex-wife and Jim Paxton hey boyfriend. They didn’t contribute anything to this movie and were just there to be there.
Some side stories that kept the story going was Scott trying to outsmart FBI agent Jimmy Woo, come off as a bit comical, but sometimes to comical for me. I was expecting Woo to throw his hat down (if he had one) like a cliché villain that got away from a clichè cop after Scott foiled him. You also have your betrayal story line where Bill Foster is helping Ghost regain stability, and blamed Hank for what he had done to her parents. There was also Scott trying to get his security company X-Con off of the ground and I didn’t care much for this story as it felt like the writers were trying to keep Dave and Kurt busy.
The visual effects were great. The giant and shrinking effects were all done well. I especially liked the car chase towards the near end of the movie. I saw a 3-D showing of this movie. 3-D movies I feel they are just an excuse for movie theaters to collect another $3-4 a ticket. But in this movie, they seem to really work well. Scenes of Hank Pym going into the quantum zone looked really good. There was a lot of detail on the microorganisms and particle effects in the quantum realm. That was all there was to note of the 3D in the movie. Ghost’s visual effects were awesome as well. It looked cool to see how unstable she was. Constantly, she was shown having ghost movement and leaving silhouettes of herself wither walking or moving around. Once again, Marvel did digital age regression on Michael Douglas but this time on Michelle Pfeiffer as well to create a scene with both of them in 1987 and 30 years younger. Marvel also did this with Robert Downey Jr in Captain America Civil War and are going to do this again with Samuel L Jackson in the upcoming Captain Marvel. It’s such a bizarre effect and it’s uncanny how much better the detail is getting on these actors looking younger to play in a flashback role. I just wonder what it’s going to mean for actors in general that can now seem to play these roles forever.
The movie has what I considered to be the darkest mid and post credit scenes, I’ve ever seen in a Marvel movie. The midcredit scene has Scott going into the Quantum Realm to get Quantum Energy for Ghost. Hank, Janet and Hope were monitoring him and supposed to get him out, but all are turned to dust, due to Thanos’ actions from Infinity War. Stranded, the frantic cries of Scott gave me chills. Even the end credits where the world feels apocalyptic and empty and just the Ant that was mirroring Scott’s routine drumming, didn’t feel funny but dark. As well as the Line “Ant Man and the Wasp will return” follow with a question mark. I’d like to say good job, but I know that is just a ploy. I know that these types of movies need a few years of marketing, plus am I really to believe Spiderman is dead with the Recent announcement of Spiderman: Far from Home, or Black Panther which grossed nearly $700 million domestically? Ending story arcs right now have more closure than deaths in comic book movies. Still effective though.
What did you think of Ant-Man and the Wasp? Let me know in the comics and thank you for reading.
If you are interested in reading my thoughts with Infinity War CLICK HERE