comic book movies

Ant-Man Spoiler Discussion: Simple isn’t a bad thing in this case

ant-man spoiler discussion

After all the behind the scenes drama, Ant-Man was finally released, and like most Marvel movies, the perfect word to describe the film is “fun”. And it’s not a bad thing at all, especially for the type of movie Ant-Man was. So let’s discuss Ant-Man!

Spoilers follow.

Next year we’re seeing 7 superhero movies, and as more superhero movies enter the marketplace, the bigger these movies become. Studios feel like bigger is better, which is why we’re getting huge event movies like Batman v Superman, Civil War and Apocalypse. Thing is, after a while you get over the whole “the world is going to end” thing. Sometimes it’s good to get a more character focused piece, with smaller stakes. And that was what Ant-Man was.

ant-man movie hank pym

I should say that overall I enjoyed Ant-Man more than Avengers: Age of Ultron (Age of Ultron discussion here). Probably because this is the type of movie that sold itself as being a little weird and quirky, and that’s what it delivered, and because I went into Ant-Man with lower expectations.

Ant-Man felt different to the other Marvel movies, even though it followed the familiar Marvel origin story formula. It had the heist element combined with strong family drama. With Scott and his daughter, and Hank and Hope. And it’s the heist and heart of Ant-Man that makes it a great movie.

ant-man cassie lang

So those were the strong parts of the film. We’re introduced to a character who comes out of prison and wants to redeem himself, for his daughter. Paralleling to that story arc is Hank who wants to redeem himself for his daughter as well, by stopping his technology from getting into the wrong hands.

Along with the family drama comes the supporting characters, and a stand-out was definitely Michael Pena’s Luis. His character added such great humour to the film “back it up, yupp back it up”.

ant-man yellowjacket

But now let’s get to our villain. Yellowjacket was another pretty forgettable Marvel villain. The villain of the story continues to be a major problem for Marvel films. Corey Stoll’s character claims he had a father/son relationship with Hank, yet we never really see that or get a sense of it properly (it was said rather than shown). He doesn’t come off as sympathetic, he just comes off as another power-hungry villain. I’m just saying, the audience should actually feel something when the villain dies, and I couldn’t care less when he died (or enters another dimension, whatever the heck happened to him). Marvel films need to find a way to give more time for the development of their villains, so they become actual characters, not plot devices to give the hero a cool fight.

But a cool fight indeed it was. The best action pieces came from the smaller scaled fights in the movie. Falcon vs Ant-Man was great. But what was better was the final fight between Ant-Man and Yellowjacket. Visually, Ant-Man has great powers. But he also has weird powers, and it’s important to be self-aware of that. And that’s exactly what the last action piece showed. We see a giant Thomas the Tank Engine, a giant ant running around and the hero and villain battling it out in a child’s bedroom. It may not be “omg the world is going to end” type 3rd act action piece we’re used to in superhero movies, but the smaller stakes worked within the context of the film. When the film embraced the weirdness of its character it worked the best.

ant-man spoiler discussion

And the smaller stakes felt refreshing. It felt new witnessing the final fight between Ant-Man and Yellowjacket. Witnessing Ant-Man’s point of view when he shrinks down is really cool to see, and nothing we’ve seen before in a superhero movie. So Ant-Man gave us something new, which is why it works.

The humour mostly worked in Ant-Man, and it didn’t feel annoying like in Age of Ultron. Ant-Man is the type of movie that needs humour and one-liners consistently. But seriously, I need to see more of Luis, he was so good!

ant-man movie luis

It will be good to see more weird superhero movies like this, which I’m expecting we’ll see with Deadpool and probably eventually with Shazam as well. And although Ant-Man wasn’t groundbreaking, it’s quirkiness helped differentiate itself and that’s what you need to do when there’s so many other superhero properties out there.

I just hope that other studios take note and don’t feel the need to create such huge end of the world stakes all the time, because it can get tiresome. You can have a hero and villain battle it out on a Thomas the Tank Engine play set, and still have an awesome third act. Not that I’m not looking forward to how huge and epic Batman v Superman, Civil and Apocalypse will be, we just don’t need huge event movies for all these superhero movies.

ant-man movie spoiler discussion

Overall I really enjoyed Ant-Man, and felt like this was the most “human” Marvel movie yet. Sometimes people use the word “fun” to describe Marvel movies in a negative way, suggesting there is nothing more than the superficial enjoyment the films give. However Ant-Man kicked that criticism out by providing a fun movie, that genuinely had a lot of heart. I mean I personally have never felt so affected by an ant dying before, r.i.p Antony. The movie has pacing issues and awkward dialogue. It was a simple movie that didn’t pose any great philosophical or thematic questions, or anything groundbreaking, but honestly it actually was a lot of fun and made me care about the characters, so for me that’s a win.

As for the Ant-Man mid and post credit scenes? Well we saw Hope get her Wasp costume. Her character was a little off in the beginning but she developed well enough by the end of the film. It will be cool to see her as Wasp and see Ant-Man and Wasp go on cute tiny adventures together. But the big one was the post-credit scene with Captain America, Falcoln and Bucky Barnes. It looks like Ant-Man will be team Captain America in Civil War because they’ll need his help for something. Ant-Man was the final Marvel Studios movie of the year, next up is Civil War so this is the only connecting thread we have to Civil War. I have no idea how they’re going to fit all those characters in but that’s a conversation for another time. But it is good we’ll be seeing Ant-Man get involved in Civil War!

 

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17 replies »

  1. I like the movie…and I am totally in the “I told you so” mood. Because I called that Ant-Man would be better than Age of Ultron months ago. And above all, I was right that it was too early to make a fuss around Marvel supposedly fridging Wasp. Marvel actually managed to deliver the “better Ant-man” while still leaving the door open for the original Wasp to turn up. We might even get a mother daughter relationship in the MCU!

    I am not worried about Civil War at all. Because the whole Captain America franchise inclusive Peggy Carter has been done by the same writing team and they have yet to disappoint me.

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    • Haha well you were right! But yeah Ant-Man was a lot of fun and well balanced. And they paved the way nicely to properly introduce and develop Wasp’s character. As for Civil War, that’s true, but studio interference with setting up the bigger world has been a problem for the MCU in the past (IM2) but I do like the creative team so hopefully that movie is well balanced as well!

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      • Yeah, but I still think that Fury and Black Widow were the best parts of Iron Man 2…it was everything else which didn’t work. If you take out the world building elements the movie only gets worse. Also, that they use the same writers and directors for Civil War and Infinity War suggests to me that I might be right with my theory that the next movie will only show the start of Civil War, and that Infinity war I will show the end of it.

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      • Yeah I agree that Civil War will continue into Infinity War because it would be hard to do all the Winter Soldier stuff + set up the conflict + make everyone pick sides in the one movie whilst introducing Spider-Man and Black Panther. It would make sense for it to carry through to IW with everyone reteaming to defeat Thanos in part 2 or something

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      • Above all, it would be something which will impact the whole MCU, including the shows. It will be a second Hydra event. It would be too bad to miss out on that opportunity.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. This movie is fun, and sometimes that’s all you need. But it’s also a good redemption story with some very creative set pieces and action scenes.

    And yes, the Falcon fight is a highlight. “Make sure the Cap doesn’t hear about this.”

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  3. I loved this movie, but, yeah, I agree on Yellowjacket. They kind of changed his motivation a few times through the film, too… at first it seemed like he just wanted to make the suits to protect Earth, then it turns out he wants revenge on Hank Pym or something, then they say the Pym Particles made him crazy (which it really wasn’t said he even used them on himself yet)… yeah, Yellowjacket was all over the place. At least he was cooler than Malekith and Ronan, who were just these really angry warlord guys who barely talked… well, Ronan talked. I literally can’t remember a single thing Malekith even said.

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    • Oh yeah compared to some of the other Marvel villains Yellowjacket was better. And now that you mention it I can’t remember anything Malekith said either haha. They really need to create some more memorable villains in the MCU

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      • Loki has been the best mcu villain thus far. The winter soldier was interesting, but even he was brainwashed or mind controlled, so you can’t really count him.

        Meanwhile, DC is making an ENTIRE MOVIE based on villains. DC has the more interesting villains. In my opinion, the best thing about Superman movies are his villains. Zod, lex Luthor, braniac, doomsday, metallo, darkseid, bizarro. You get the point

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      • Yeah agreed, DC has the best villains and they know it! That’s not to say that Marvel can’t create compelling villains in their films, they just choose to focus a lot more on the hero

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  4. Great review yo, I loved seeing your thoughts on this film in-depth and I think we’re on the same page about what makes the film work so well. I loved the heist element and also liked how the film embraced its weirdness with the ants, self-aware humour and the totally trippy shit like when Ant-Man shrunk into the Quantum Realm, that sequence got really freaky at one point and I was like “Damn Marvel you’re going into funky territory and I love it!” Again like you I liked how this was a simpler and smaller affair, it wasn’t another world-ending situation, it was simple and effective and that’s why I dug it more than Avengers 2. I think I’m the only one who like Corey Stoll as Darren Cross/Yellowjacket, while he was no Loki or Wilson Fisk, I thought it was at least a little more interesting and memorable than Malekith and Ronin because of his charisma and badass costume and powers, but that’s just me.

    P.S. I have to say after reading your thoughts on Arrow season 3 and this I’m totally subbing your blog, you seem like a cool person with stuff I would like to read. Keep up the good stuff! 😀

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    • Haha thanks so much! But I agree that Yellowjacket is better than some of the other Marvel villains, but he still falls into the trap of being underdeveloped and slightly cliche. But yeah Ant-Man overall was so much fun, and I’m glad that Marvel invested on such a weird hero.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m not fan of Ant-Man, but I did enjoy the character (costume) in the Avengers animated series, and I thought the movie looked cool, I really wanted to like it but found it just dead boring. I feel that if it had been more like Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, that quirk odd style that Wright does I think it might have been brilliant instead of just ok.

        Liked by 1 person

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