Post Avengers: Infinity War, Ant-Man returns with new partner The Wasp hoping to leave their mark in the summer movie season, cheering up those suffering from severe PTSD - Post Thanos Stress Disorder. In this light and breezy sequel we join Scott Lang during his last few days under house arrest following the events of Captain America: Civil War. On the run and a fugitive from the FBI, a desperate Hank Pym - trying to rescue his wife from the Quantum Realm - presents Scott with a deadly new mission to help save her.
Chock-full of pint-sized delights Ant-Man and The Wasp is simple and straight forward but that's perfectly alright. Finding success in its smaller moments - this is arguably the first movie of the recent batch to disregard the seemingly exhausted Marvel formula, zooming in on a story that for once doesn't involve saving the world. With sights set smaller it's extremely refreshing to see not one but two family relationships as the focus of a Marvel feature. In the grand scheme of things Ant-Man and The Wasp isn't the biggest nor the best Marvel movie, but then again it's not trying to be. Stripping back to basics it offers a more meaningful and personal touch, one very much needed to bring the current superhero world back down to earth a little.
Looking at the bigger picture Superhero films these days are currently all burdened by existing in the same universe, knocking uncomfortably against each other - with very little elbow room to exist as artistic ventures in their own light. Collectively we expect them to be grander in scale than the previous feature every time and compare each episode with the other, as if we now exist in a virtual action packed soap opera. Much to its credit Ant-Man and The Wasp is an undemanding silly science romp that couldn't care less about anything happening surrounding it.
Paul Rudd once again steals the show as Ant-Man but outshines Evangeline Lilly's introduction as The Wasp. Continuing to be the most charming hero in the Avengers line up, his heartwarming relationship with daughter Cassie further emphasises his commitment as a father and establishes him as a different, more mature and understated hero despite his goofy personality. Lilly's no nonsense Wasp is sharp, driven and focused but the couple are rarely seen teaming up together in action - consequently she seems more like a sidekick rather than a partner in crime. Regardless of her eye catching kitchen fight - it's deeply disappointing that Lilly couldn't leave her sting in the criminally male dominated MCU, but with that flashy yellow and blue suit The Wasp's wings aren't clipped just yet.
As with its predecessor, Ant-Man and The Wasp offers plenty of inventive Alice in Wonderland like moments. A suitcase laboratory, a gigantic PEZ dispenser, human sized Hot-Wheel cars and a seven foot salt shaker - there is endless fun to be had with Hank Pym's shrinking and expanding technology. Not to mention the creative design behind Hannah John-Kamen's wall phasing Ghost: a visually perplexing character who really pops.
Ant-Man and the Wasp is worth all the buzz, being laid back, uncomplicated and care free like most of the earlier Marvel films. Recently the studio have forced silly and perhaps uncomfortable humour on their previously straight faced heroes - in contrast Ant-Man and The Wasp excels as a hilarious belly laugh adventure, with the humour used to reinforce Scott Lang as a character. Free from all of the current complex and constraining inter character plots, it improves upon the charming and funny original outing through clever writing and fun characterisation. With the help of Michael Douglas' scene steeling performance as the obstinate Hank Pym - this insect feature explores the natural human dynamic of the Van Dyne's and the Lang family. Though it may not be a tier one Marvel offering Ant-Man and the Wasp is charmingly well aware of its itsy-bitsy scale.
Ant-Man and The Wasp:
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Hi I’m James - a huge welcome to my film blog! I started this site just after my 14th birthday and have been bringing you my own take on the hottest box office arrivals and many art house triumphs ever since.