*****************Warning the following article may contain spoilers. You have been Warned!*****************
Armed with a super-suit with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, con-man Scott Lang must embrace his inner hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym, plan and pull off a heist that will save the world.
The latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Ant-Man. Again, Marvel is taking a risk bringing in another property that many people do not know anything about ah la Guardians of the Galaxy which turned out to be the sleeper hit for Marvel last summer. Sadly, Ant-Man does not compare to Guardians of the Galaxy and how good it was, but that is not to say Ant-man is bad–far from it–but, unlike Guardians that had me wanting to go see it again as soon as I could, Ant-man gives us a stand alone movie sort of.
What we get is pretty much the origin stories for a lot of new players going into Phase III next year, and whenever you are introducing new characters, you always have the difficult time of balancing their introductions and telling the main story. Ant-man has this problem at the beginning of the movie because they are trying to introduce Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) and give us his motivation for doing the things he does, and it really falls short (maybe not “fall short” per se, but after seeing the reasons, you really don’t feel for Scott and his plight). Scott was an employee for a big corporation that stiffed their costumers out of the money that they were due, and so Scott breaks in and steals the money back for the people. In doing so, he gets caught and sent to jail and his wife divorces him; at this point in the story, he is getting married to someone else. So, yeah, he had good intentions, but does that really make him a superhero?
Then, we get Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) who, in the comics and in the MCU, is the original Ant-man, and we are introduced to him as a man that does not want his tech to be used for nefarious means. Now, the man he groomed, Darren Cross (Corey Stoll), has taken over Pym Industries, found the old files of the Ant-Man project, and is doing exactly what Pym was afraid would happen.
So, much of the story could have been solved if the people in it had been honest and up front with those closest to them. Hank Pym pushed his daughter, Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly), away from him when his wife died and kept her at arms length with a story that Hope knew was a lie. For the story purposes, I can understand why they did it; it lets us see a character that we probably wouldn’t have seen otherwise. Secondly, his protegee, Darren, had heard hints about the Ant-Man project but was constantly told by Pym that it was just a myth. If Pym didn’t want anyone finding out about his suit, why keep the files at his company instead of somewhere safe.
Now this might seem like I didn’t enjoy the movie cause I am nit picking; and that is true, I am nit picking, but that is what we reviewers do, right? Paul Rudd, though, still doesn’t feel like a superhero to me; he was good on screen and his humorous personality had me chuckling. Michael Douglas is great in his role as Hank Pym, and I was always looking forward to seeing him on camera. Evangeline Lilly had a few moments where she shined, and by the way it ended, we will be seeing some more badass moments from her. I am sorry to say the villain they gave Corey Stoll to play is just another one-dimensional bad guy that they throw at the hero so he has someone to fight against. Honestly, tough, I don’t know the villain gallery for Ant-Man, so I don’t know who else they could have brought in that might have been a bigger, better baddie. I wish Marvel would stop with these one-and-done villains. I know they are trying that with Thanos, but he is the only one they seem to be doing that for. Well, I guess Loki could be looked at in that light as well.
Like always, there are a ton of Easter Eggs to watch out for in this movie. You also get a mid-credit and end-credit scene, so make sure you sit through all the credits, and I will say that both of them were very good and leave you asking a lot of questions, especially for those that do not know a lot of the comic lore that is coming out in phase III.