After Thanos clicked his fingers and changed the landscape of the MCU in it’s entirety, it is an honest question on what’s next. Is it a Captain America stand alone film showing him after the snap, or is it a standalone Rocket Raccoon film being the Guardian Of The Galaxy (how sad does that sound), no, it’s our minuscule ant loving superhero returning on the big screen since the events of Civil War.

For myself, Antman and The Wasp was one of my most anticipated movies of 2018 because what people forget to notice about the original, is that it’s a heist film more than a superhero film.

This film, like the first Ant-Man (2015), was directed by Peyton Reed, one of the few American comedy directors still working in today’s Hollywood scale.After the abrupt departure of wacky-but-amazing director Edgar Wright, Peyton Reed steered the first marvel film in jeopardy to create one of the more creative and exciting marvel installments.

Two years after teaming with Captain America in Germany, Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) is placed on house arrest due to disobeying the Sokovia Accords and is in the midst of trying to balance fatherhood, creating a security company and forgo his past life as a snack sized superhero.But after a visit from a familiar face, Scott Lang teams up with Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) and Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) in order to rescue a fallen family member, as well as defeat a mysterious and violent Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen).

Ant-Man and the Wasp doubles down on what the first Antman provided—it’s a light hearted film filled with witty one-liners and large amounts of comedic relief, almost overbearing at times paired with insane action scenes that only an Antman film can provide.

As a collective unit, the cast of the film provides some of the best chemistry seen in a marvel movie. Paul Rudd as Ant-Man is as entertaining as you’d expect, Evangeline Lilly provides some of the best moments in the film as the Wasp, Micheal Peña, T.I fill the movie with well timed quips while Micheal Douglas holds down the forth with some of the most emotional parts of the film,because it’s Micheal freakin’ Douglas.

If there’s an actor the movie elevates, apart from Evangeline Lilly and Rudd, it’s Michael Peña, who returns as Luis, Scott’s former cellmate and his colleague in the security-consultant business, who shoulders a large part of the comedic relief.

Peyton Reed’s directing is one of the stars in Ant-Man and the Wasp and he does not hold back. With more than capable comedic actors such as lead Paul Rudd and Micheal Pena, Reed is in comedic director heaven as he inputs playful banter in every scene, filled with clever jokes that will make children and adults alike burst out in laughter.

Marvel has made a name for itself for some of the best special effects and CGI incorporated into action sequences, ranging from the psychedelic experiences in Doctor Strange to the intergalactic space wars that consist in Guardians of the GalaxyAntman and the Wasp is no exception. The special effects are smooth and swiftly efficient, but the film’s best action sequences relies on the creativity of having two larger than life superheroes that can fit through a keyhole or grow to 65 feet in a flash of an eye. From oversized ants to real life Hot-wheels, the action in this film did nothing but add to the impressive resume of the MCU in regards to their action.

If I could only say the same for the plot.

The movie does not even try to put together a cohesive and well constructed plot, nor does it waste any time giving any explanation to their exposition sequences. When the film tries to delve into the scientific aspects of their shape shifting ways, they add quantum to just about every word in the dictionary and expect you to go with it. It gets to a point where Scott Lang even makes a quirky remark about it.

And the villains, Thanos have mercy on us all.

After a recent stint of consecutive strong villians, the momentum of great character development screeched to a halt with the antagonists that plague Ant-Man and The Wasp.

The main antagonist goes by the name of Ghost, but in actuality is a young woman named Ava (Hannah John-Kamen) whose molecules are flying apart, making her translucent. Although her character has plenty of motivation to stop Ant-man and company, the movie fails to deliver a competent villain and is nothing more than a promising concept. Adding to the weak marvel villain list is co-villain Sonny (Walton Goggins) a black marketer who is basically an evil bad guy who is evil because, money. Sure. The movie doesn’t even attempt to flesh out Sonny or his goon squad and in all honesty he is such a poor excuse for a villain, ranking near the bottom of the sad, endless pit of marvel villains (minus a few) and is ultimately used as an excuse for the grand action scenes.

Forget the horrible villains, the most unforgivable aspect of the film resides in it’s totality. The movie carries almost zero consequences and never in the film does it feel like that our heroes are in danger. For some that may be a positive after the grim and bleakness of the events of Infinity War, but it just feels like a reason to produce a safe, by the numbers superhero sequel. The original Ant-Man excelled from a creative standpoint, becoming a melting pot between three genres: a heist film,superhero film and a family film to create one of the more unique marvel films to date. The movie also does nothing to build the lore around the MCU other than introduce new aspects of the quantum realm and introduce us to The Wasp. If Thanos snapped his fingers and eradicated this film from the MCU catalog, it hurts me to say that it wouldn’t change the landscape of the MCU.

Grade:B-

Ananth Para
paramana@mcmaster.ca

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