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Thursday, 30 July 2015

[Movie review] Ant-Man (3D) (2015)

The following text is a (rough) translation of my Swedish review which can be read at the Swedish online movie magazine MovieZine. Because of that, the presentation is different from the usual way I write my reviews for this blog.

A heist movie - but with superheroes (and ants)

First official trailer of Ant-Man. (Marvel Studios)

Ant-Man is the twelfth film (in order) which takes place in the fictional Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), a couple of months after The Avengers: Age of Ultron.

Instead of writing the plot's summary which many reviewers already had done, I'll immediately tell you what I think about the movie.

After watching several MCU films with epic battles between Good and Evil, I must say that Ant-Man feels very different – at least when I watched it at the cinema.

The thing is that Ant-Man doesn’t feel like a classic superhero movie. Instead, it's more like a family-friendly heist film (à la Ocean's Eleven) where a sympathetic protagonist (Paul Rudd) is hired by a scientist (Michael Douglas) to steal a weapon which is dangerous if it falls into the wrong hands. The fact that our hero gets the help of three other cronies in order to succeed with the heist makes the film feel even less like a superhero movie.

Of course, in order for the visitors to get the feeling that Ant-Man really is a superhero movie taking place in the MCU, Marvel adds another superhero (Falcon from Captain America: The Winter Soldier, played by Anthony Mackie) and cameos such as Peggy Carter (from Captain America, played by Hayley Atwell) and Howard Stark (the older version from Iron Man 2, played by John Slattery). And don't forget the villain who also receives superpowers (in one way or another) towards the end of the film.

When you read this review, you may think that I'm criticizing the movie. Not at all!

The film is funny with its funny dialogues. Michael Douglas makes a great interpretation of Dr. Hank Pym where he convinces the moviegoers of his inventions and discoveries. Paul Rudd is absolutely superb as the sympathetic burglar Scott Lang who does everything for his daughter and becomes the superhero Ant-Man.

I almost forgot to comment on the film's special effects. All of the scenes where the protagonist shrinks himself to the size of an ant are well done. Many have compared these scenes with Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989). Personally, I think Ant-Man has taken a step further and can also be compared with A Bug's Life (1998). It's awesome to see the protagonists being able to communicate with ants (which plays a very important role in the plot), don't you agree?

Another cool special effect is when Michael Douglas (thanks to Lola VFX) also plays a younger version of himself instead of using a younger actor. It's fantastic to be able to see him in a flashback where he looks just like when he starred in the movie Wall Street (1987).

Unfortunately there are things in the movie which I'm not satisfied with. Firstly, I don't find the antagonist (played by Corey Stoll) not convincing enough. True, he is evil and doesn't hesitate to kill in order to reach his goal. But is he as intimidating as previous MCU-villains, like Iron Monger (Jeff Bridges), Abomination (Tim Roth) and the Red Skull (Hugo Weaving)? I think not.

Secondly, I'm not too fond of the character Hope Van Dyne (the scientist's daughter) played by Evangeline Lilly. For some reason, I don't think the Hobbit-actress is the right choice for the role. I can't explain it, something just doesn't feel right. Also, I am no fan of the character's hairstyle.

I saw the 3D version of the film, but I don't think there is much difference between the 'regular' and the 3D version. The 3D effects are seen only in a few scenes.

Despite these disadvantages, I think the film deserves four stars of five, and I look forward to Ant-Man's next adventure in the MCU.

By the way, don't leave until you've watched the two post-credit scenes. Otherwise you'll miss important clues to the next MCU movie coming in 2016!

ScoreFull Star YellowFull Star YellowFull Star YellowFull Star YellowEmpty Star

(To know how I rate mobile games and movies, please read about it here.)

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