Film

Ant-Man and the Wasp (Film Review) – An Enjoyable MCU Movie

Ant-Man and the Wasp is a superhero film directed by Peyton Reed and it is a sequel to Ant-Man. It is also the twentieth instalment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Paul Rudd reprises his role as Scott Lang/Ant-Man and Evangeline Lily reprises her role as Hope van Dyne/Wasp. Michelle Pfeiffer, Randall Park, Laurence Fishburne, Abby Ryder Fortson, Hannah John-Kamen, Michael Douglas, David Dastmalchian, Tip “T.I.” Harris, Bobby Cannavale, Walton Goggins, Judy Greer and Michael Peña round out the rest of the cast for this movie.

The story of Ant-Man and the Wasp is set after the events of Captain America: Civil War and focuses on the duo of Scott Lang/Ant-Man and Hope van Dyne/Wasp. They are working with Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), the original Ant-Man, to retrieve Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer), the original Wasp, from the Quantum Realm.

My Expectation For Ant-Man and the Wasp

For many years, I was just a casual fan of the MCU. I liked the franchise, but I did not have a deep love for it like a lot of other people did because I never read any Marvel comic books. As such, I never had a lot of attachment for the characters in the MCU which prevented me from liking the films in this franchise to a greater extent than I did. However, recent films such as Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War have really made me a bigger fan of the MCU than I ever have been before.

Certainly, I would have usually ignored a film like Ant-Man and the Wasp but I do not have this mentality anymore. In fact, I went back to watch Ant-Man for the first time as preparation for this sequel. I really liked Ant-Man. It is not the best movie in the MCU but there is a lot to like in it. Corey Stoll as the villain is not one of those things, but there is a lot to like in Ant-Man. The humour, action, visuals and performances by Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lily, Michael Peña and particularly Michael Douglas are great aspects of that movie.

Quantum Realm Ant-Man and the Wasp

As a film that is coming off the brilliance of Avengers: Infinity War, my hopes for Ant-Man and the Wasp were raised but I was not expecting this to be a top tier MCU movie. Instead, all I was hoping was for Ant-Man and the Wasp to maintain the quality of what made Ant-Man so entertaining while improving on its weaker aspect; the villain. I was also interested to see how the events of Avengers: Infinity War would play into this film.

My Thoughts On Ant-Man and the Wasp

Overall, Ant-Man and the Wasp is an enjoyable film. However, if I had to choose between the two, I do slightly prefer Ant-Man. One thing that this film considerably improves over the original is the villain. This was not an especially hard thing to do but I liked how Ava/Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen) had a more relatable and personable motivation for her actions than Corey Stoll’s Darren Cross/Yellowjacket. Ghost is not one of the best MCU villains by any means though.

Hannah John-Kamen as Ava/Ghost in Ant-Man and the Wasp

Moreover, I would contest that some of the strongest aspects of Ant-Man are a little bit weaker in this movie. While the performances from the returning cast, as well as the humour in Ant-Man and the Wasp, are still at the same level of quality as they were in Ant-Man, the action and visuals in this film are slightly worse. Ant-Man and the Wasp also has worse pacing than Ant-Man. This movie did not flow as well as the first and some parts felt quite sluggish.

The core story in Ant-Man and the Wasp is what you expect from where the first film left off and it is good. But, it is not as compelling as the story in Ant-Man and it is a bit disposable when you think of the larger narrative being told in the MCU right now. However, Ant-Man and the Wasp absolutely works as a palette cleanser for the serious and heavy Avengers: Infinity War and, once again, the de-aging technology is outstanding. I love this technology as it opens new doors when it comes to storytelling not just in the MCU but for any film.

Evangeline Lily as Wasp and Paul Rudd as Ant-Man in Ant-Man and the Wasp

My Final Thoughts On Ant-Man and the Wasp

Ant-Man and the Wasp also has a great mid-credits scene which, as you can imagine, links into the events of Avengers: Infinity War very well and it sets up some interesting things going forward in the MCU. While I prefer Ant-Man, everything in this film combines to make a good and enjoyable instalment in the MCU. If you are a casual or hardcore fan of this franchise then you should absolutely see Ant-Man and the Wasp because you will, at the very least, be entertained.

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