Ant-Man and the Wasp
Image Credit: Marvel Studios
Not every Marvel movie needs to be about saving the Universe. 'Ant-Man and the Wasp' is refreshingly small scale, in relative terms of course, following the Universe shaking events of 'Avengers Infinity War'. Or rather before them, as a key mid credits scene makes the chronology clear.
At any rate, 'Ant-Man and the Wasp' is a great deal of fun. Three days shy of completing a two-year house arrest sentence following his government defying antics in 'Captain America Civil War', Scott Lang aka Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) spends time with his young daughter and generally looks forward to being a free citizen again. That is until he gets entangled in a rescue mission, whereby Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Hope aka Wasp (Evangeline Lily) require his help to rescue Pym’s long-lost wife Janet (Michelle Pfeiffer) from the so-called quantum realm. Attempting to thwart their plans are mysterious villain Ghost, a rich criminal who wants Pym’s quantum technology for his own business empire, and the FBI, who (rightly) suspect Scott of pulling the wool over their eyes regarding his house arrest. All manner of small, normal and giant sized action shenanigans ensue.
I laughed a lot in this film, which means I forgave the rather predictable plot.
The main cast all do well, and there are some good supporting players. Lawrence Fishburne turns up as one of Pym’s former colleagues, and Scott’s criminal pals turned security firm employees are back too, in the form of Michael Pena, David Dastmalchian and TI. Visual effects are appropriately eye-popping, particularly in one early kitchen fight scene and the car chase finale in the streets of San Francisco. Director Peyton Reed stages these scenes with imaginative flair, having a great deal of fun with all the miniaturisation gags. There are also some fine running jokes about card tricks and truth serum. In fact, I laughed a lot in this film, which means I forgave the rather predictable plot.
'Ant-Man and the Wasp' is arguably a minor entry in the series, and it isn’t top tier Marvel product ('Captain America' instalments 'Civil War' and 'The Winter Soldier' remain the genuine standouts for my money), but I still enjoyed it a lot. One more thing I must add: there’s a genuinely brilliant gag near the end, involving my all-time favourite 1950s monster B-movie Them! For me, that alone was worth the price of admission.