Big Things From Small People: A Review of Antman

Marvel continues their franchise of superhero movies with Antman, a movie about a superhero with Ant powers.

It’s not the coolest idea.

To the surprise of many, Antman is a funny, action-packed adventure,with some amazing acting and effects to hold it up.

The movie is a major divergence from the comics. In the comics, Hank Pym is a scientist who invents the Pym Particle, allowing him to shrink and grow in size. He goes on various adventures, and battles many villains, before retiring and giving his protege Scott Lang his powers.

In the movie, Hank Pym is an old man. Antman was active as a spy during the cold war, and now has retired. He lost his lab to Darren Cross, but Hank destroyed the data on the Pym Particle. When Dr.Cross attempts to recreate the Pym Particle, Hank needs to find a new Antman to steal back the Pym Particle before Dr.Cross can sell it to the military with the highest bid. He finds Scott Lang, here as an ex-con trying to start over, and enlists him as the new Antman.

What follows is a heist movie, similar to Ocean’s 11 or the Italian Job, except that both sides are using superpowers. Shenanigans involving growing and/or shrinking objects, manipulating ants as helpers, and some outfit stealing keep you on the edge of your seat for the second half of the movie. The battles between Antman and his nemesis make amazing use of CGI. The two are constantly growing and shrinking, as the battle goes from the labs to a helicopter, to the inside of suitcases, machines, and ultimately a Thomas the Tank Engine track. Mundane objects are manipulated in amazing ways, using key chains, iPhones, Lego bricks and more to get an advantage.

The movie uses the Antman concept to it’s fullest, while leaving room for sequels and the inevitable Avengers crossover. It’s fast, funny, action packed, and really just plain fun. I give it a thumbs up.

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