When I first heard that Paul Rudd would be starring in his own superhero flick with Michael Douglas, I figured Ant-Man would either be a total waste of time or a great ride. Naturally, I gambled on the Imax 3D experience, because if you're going to win or lose, you might as well win or lose in glorious fashion. As a little disclaimer, I'm not normally the biggest comic-book adaptation fan, but I still had high expectations coming into this Marvel endeavor.
With all that being said, when I watched the film yesterday, I was extremely pleased! It's lighthearted and really funny, but that doesn't undermine the sense of dire situations when the tension mounts. Ant-Man brilliantly blurs the line between superhero origins and comedic tone, and with that jovial attitude the protagonists are made more human. I absolutely felt for Scott Lang (played impeccably by Rudd) and his mentor Dr. Hank Pym (also portrayed excellently by Michael Douglas) during their moments of triumph and their times of trial.
I went into the movie as a complete layman of the Ant-Man lore, so when I first heard what the suit can do, I was skeptical as to how that would make for a great avenue for heroism. With that being said, the addition of ants which are telepathically controlled and the extreme strength afforded by the shrinking process lent itself to a very cool concept. The suit itself looks awesome, and it feels like something you'd wear on some sort of unprecedented expedition, which is pretty much spot-on with what's actually going on.
The fight scenes are kinetic and energetic, and the fight choreography is extremely engaging. Watching Ant-Man grow and shrink between blows is a very exciting visual experience, and I felt childish glee whenever Ant-Man would use his tiny stature to disrupt someone's mechanical devices or evade gunfire. He even has a couple nifty gadgets which come into play later on in the film, and are really cool. There is a great cameo from one of the Avengers which will absolutely make you chuckle, and there are a few references to the Avengers which will satisfy long-standing fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The villain, Darren Cross A.K.A. Yellowjacket, is lackluster at best. This, I feel, is the weakest part of the movie. Dr. Cross builds an updated suit based on the Ant-Man technology and adds lasers, which is definitely cool, but the man himself is not the most enthralling villain by any stretch. I liked the battle between Ant-Man and Yellowjacket, but only based on the visuals and on Paul Rudd's performance. His humor overshadowed the villain's less-than-stellar performance and made each dynamic moment feel awesome.
The supporting cast is quite good, and I must make special mention of Michael Pena as Scott's best friend Luis. Every scene with Luis is hilarious, and his dialogue is simply genius. The hilarity of the lines mixed with Pena's spot-on delivery culminates in absolute comedic joy whenever Luis is in frame. Evangeline Lilly is solid as Hope Pym, but the character herself feels a bit cliched in the "daughter-resenting-her-father" sense. The writing is okay, but leaves much to be desired when you put Hope up beside the other supporting cast. Michael Douglas kills it as Dr. Pym, and there are no surprises there. He's a great actor, and the role was well written, so there are no gripes about his character from me.
All in all, the movie skips along at a great pace, and there are no lethargic moments anywhere. Nobody will be sleeping through this flick! Ant-Man is not a perfect movie, but is an excellent one with solid writing, cool effects, and excellent performances. You absolutely MUST see this gigantic success in theaters, movie fans!
Thanks for reading, and as per usual if you have a suggestion for another article, please leave it in the comments below! Have a KILLER day!