Film review: Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018), directed by Peyton Reed
tl;dr: Miniature-sized heist shenanigans, all in good fun.
Hot on the heels of fighting other superheroes in Germany (Captain America: Civil War), Scott “Ant-Man” Lang (Paul Rudd) finds himself under house arrest. Days are spent trying to think of ways to entertain daughter Cassie (Abby Ryder Fortson) and setting up a security business with [former prison in]mates (Michael Peña, Tip ‘T.I.’ Harris and David Dastmalchian), just waiting for the day when he can get out again.
Meanwhile, Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) and her dad Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) are trying their hardest to figure out how to get to the quantum realm, where mum Janet (Michelle Pfeiffer) – previously presumed dead – might have been stranded for the last 20-odd years. They briefly manage to open a portal and a message slips through to Scott which suggests she’s very much alive. Soooo they get him out of his house arrest a few days early with the cunning use of ants, and then spend the film trying to avoid getting caught by Agent Woo (Randall Park), Scott’s FBI parole officer.
Unfortunately, they’re not the only ones who are interested in that kind of technology, so they also spend the film trying to get away from a black marketeer (Walton Goggins) and the murderous “quantum ghost” Ava (Hannah John-Kamen).
Also starring Laurence Fishburne as Dr Bill Foster, Judy Greer as ex-wife Maggie, and Bobby Cannavale as Cassie’s stepdad Paxton.
I haven’t seen Ant-Man since we saw it in the cinema three years ago so the memory of who all these people were was a bit shaky, to say the least. Still, I enjoyed it – but I tend to enjoy Marvel films anyway. This one has miniaturised things (and, uh, maximised?) and that’s also something I quite enjoy.
Hope gets to don a superhero costume – with blasters and wings – and kick some serious ass this time. That one of the antagonists, the most ass-kicking of them to boot, was a female as well was nice to see. I didn’t particularly agree with Ava’s methods for getting where she wanted, but I can understand the desperation when you’re in constant pain.
Luis and his sidekicks were a welcome comic relief, and the bit about the truth serum was memorable. Some other characters felt a bit like cartoon characters, but on the other hand … that’s kind of what they were originally, so that doesn’t feel like it’s much of a valid point.
This wasn’t a mindblowing film by any means and it felt a bit flat in places, but for something fairly lighthearted in tone and something you can munch popcorn to, it certainly works. It’s funny, it’s warm, and it’s a little bit silly. All good things.
3 out of 5 Hot Wheels.