It is here! Ant-Man is this year’s second MCU film to come out. Do I hear this right? Is it actually better than Avengers: Age of Ultron? Let’s see what the Buns have to say about that.
Oh, Marvel. How on earth do you keep doing it? Every film is like a field trip to a world where superheroes can and do exist – something many of us spent many childhood years dreaming of. It also helps that all of the MCU films have been fucking amazing thus far, and Ant-Man earns his keep just fine, despite all the doubts that we had.
The film did a great job of setting up Ant-Man’s origin story to the backdrop of a heist movie – which was absolutely genius. I love heist films, especially ones that don’t take themselves all too seriously. However, I feel as though the characters got lost amongst all the carnage and chaos, not unlike what happened with Avengers 2, with Hope van Dyne being the main victim of too little character development. Hope is the first person in the MCU films to be raised by superhero parents. While we got to see how Hank was the absentee father who was married to his work, we didn’t really see the full extent on how that affected her life.
Arguably, the character development award must go to Michael Douglas’ Hank Pym. The poor man’s life was a series of difficult choices after the other, and even though the world was saved at the end of the day, his questions were not answered and his love was still lost. His life serves as a cautionary tale to Scott Lang, who came close to losing his daughter just like Hank did many years ago.
Ant-Man was a profoundly more human experience in a world where the skies are filled with aliens and flying gods. Scott’s from a completely different world than all the other superheroes out there and he doesn’t have superhuman powers, and that’s what makes his story special.
Can we talk about that post-credit scene? Jesus Christ. I’m so happy that they don’t tip-toe around the MCU references anymore. I’m so incredibly impressed that they’ve managed to create a whole overarching ecosystem that encompasses both TV and film in which all of these characters can co-exist in a realistic-ish way. However, you can’t help but wonder how on earth these future films are going to be remotely digestible with these massive casts that all deserve more screen time than they can get. I can’t wait for Civil War, but I am a little worried that it might turn out like Avengers 2 and end up with half-baked character arcs and a bungled storyline. Too many characters, too little time.
All that said, I spent half the film dazzled by Paul Rudd’s handsomeness. The guy’s almost 50 and he looks better than ever! All that aside, he is seriously great as Scott Lang. He’s the perfect mix of intelligent, awkward, and adorably funny. Can’t wait to see him mingle with the likes of Star-Lord, Tony Stark and Steve Rogers.
It still amazes me to no end that after I spent the last year counting the days till Age of Ultron (literally – I have a calendar to prove that) it was the biggest disappointment of 2015 so far. Yet, the film I went to see on a whim turned out being everything I ever wanted, and more. How does that even work, again?
I knew that Ant-Man was going to basically destroy Wasp’s storyline (which it did, in a way) and I was not happy about it. So, the only reason I was going to see it was because of Paul Rudd (because PAUL RUDD, DUH?!) Dear Marvel, I’d like to apologize now – I was wrong. Ant-Man was great!
And not just because it had Paul Rudd’s face the size of a movie theatre screen. (And does this man even age?!) Although that, too. And can we talk about his abs? Ahem! Also, Ant-Man was awesome because it was fun, and smart, and it kept me on the edge of my seat most of the time, and, quite frankly, what else could you ask for?
Granted, I agree with Rachel on little to no character development issue because Hope Van Dyne could have easily been THE superhero of the film, and yet she was reduced to the role of a sidekick who disappears for far too long sometimes. I did love the idea of her being much more prepared for the mission than Scott, and much more focused and in control. She was ready. She was badass. SHE WAS SO UNDERUSED! Okay, it was justified that Pym wanted someone else – someone expendable – to carry out the mission, but still! I’d really like to go into a very long rant here about how unfair it is that dudes always get to be the heroes while the kickass ladies rest on the sidelines, but what’s the point? ~le sigh
Okay, speaking of Ant-Man – Paul Rudd made an excellent unwilling hero. It’s not that I don’t believe in the noble intentions, but I’ve always found it easier to understand the characters whose motives are a bit more specific than the well-being of the humankind, and Scott Lang’s story is a perfect example of that – he’s a good guy, no doubt about that, but he signs up for being Ant-Man with a clear intention of becoming a better father, for the chance of getting back into his daughter’s life. And at the end of the day, it is what makes his story so damn cool.
As for bringing the Avengers into the story – ABOUT DAMN TIME! We can’t walk on eggshells around them forever, for heaven’s sake! It’s not just Hydra vs. S.H.I.E.L.D. anymore – and we need to see it, we need to see more heroes existing in the same universe. Naturally, Falcon’s cameo made my day – I mean, come on! That fight was pretty awesome! And okay, Sam’s been to war, and I’ve heard some speculations about the fighting sequence between him and Scott being unrealistic, but Scott was a size of an insect, and it wasn’t the same as having a hand-to-hand with the regular human, right?
As per usual, shipper that I am, I kind of liked the hint at a romance between Scott and Hope, and I hope the following films will explore it deeper.
Now, can we start an Ant-Man 2 wish-list already?
PS Is it weird that I want to Labrador-sized pet ant now?
Come on Rachel, Paul Rudd is 46. That’s not exactly 50. All joking aside though, I didn’t even know that. 46? I feel exactly the same way I did when I googled John Barrowman last week (I just kind of randomly google him just to remind me how perfectly beautiful he is) and found out that the guy is 48. Now that’s closer to 50. When have men in their late 40s become so attractive? Is it because I’m an actual adult? And did I just admit to being an actual adult?
Anyway, back to business. Let’s get it one thing of the way right now, folks: the rule seems to be that every time I violently bash a trailer, the movie turns out to be really good. That’s got to be one of the lamest superpowers around. In any case, this Bun also enjoyed Ant-Man. Very much so, I might add. It’s hilarious, it has ants, and Evangeline Lilly is delightul in it. But what happened? Why is Ant-Man so much more satisfying than Avengers 2? Well, as much as I agree with my bunny Rachel that Marvel has accomplished some tremendous work with the MCU, such an accomplishment does come with a few inconvenients.
See, like my charming Buns already mentioned, Age of Ultron was good, but not as good as anticipated. Too much stuff to cram in one film with not enough time to develop everything, AoU is a good movie but it doesn’t leave an audience completely satisfied, this because it’s too much of a transitional movie. It’s there to set things up for the next installment. Unfortunate, but what can you do? In the mean time, Ant-Man, despite having obvious ties to the next MCU movies, has a beginning, a middle, an end, and takes its time to tell the story. Plus, it was the first time that Marvel did a heist movie. Am I the only one who thinks that every time they try on another genre the resulting flick is always more exciting? There was Thor (Yes, I love the first Thor, sue me), The Winter Soldier, Guardians Of The Galaxy, now there’s Ant-Man… you know what I mean.
Of course, Ant-Man isn’t without flaws. I rolled my eyes at Hank’s reasons for keeping Hope away from the action. I mean, I know he’s an old-fashioned guy but why does she care about his opinion in the first place? Never mind Scott Lang. Hope could probably knock the fuck out of her father, steal the suit, and go on the mission by herself, with Scott being sent by her father with some false pretense and a mission to lock her up while he does the job in her place. But Hope wouldn’t be so easily outsmarted, no sir. She would maybe get captured at first, possibly because she would underestimate Scott – I mean, he may have a Ph.D but he’s kind of an idiot if you ask me, but she would come right back and Scott and her would team up to defeat the bad guy. Yes, I think Hope’s character is cruelly underused. How can you tell?
Infuriating tropes aside, the movie is still charming, creative, and above all, it is damn funny. It really, really is. Scott Lang is a riot every time he’s on screen, the story sessions with Michael Peña are gold, and the movie has a couple of scenes that I refuse to spoil for you that will probably blow your mind a little bit, in a “I don’t know if this is just ridiculous or completely amazing, but I’m loving every second of it” kind of way. Ant-Man has a lot of love to give, guys. If you only see one movie this month, this one would be a pretty good choice.
Also man, I do hope you folks will stay for the second after-credits scene. Squee.