Saturday, July 18, 2015

Ant-Man [2015]

MPAA (PG-13)  CNS/USCCB (A-II)  ChicagoTribune (3 Stars) (3 1/2 Stars)  AVClub (B)  Fr. Dennis (3 Stars)

IMDb listing
CNS/USCCB (J. McAleer) review
ChicagoTribune (M. Phillips) review (G. Kenny) review
AVClub (I. Vishnevetsky) review

Ant-Man [2015] (directed by Peyton Reed, story and screenplay cowritten by Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish along with Adam McCay and Paul Rudd based on the comic [wikip] [MCUniv] by by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber and Jack Kirby) surprised me, and perhaps I should have known better.  I initially thought last year's Guardians of the Galaxy [2014], was going to be "one too many trips to the well," and I thought the same of the current film.  YET ... I have to say that I left impressed ;-).

LIKE, last year's Guardians of the Galaxy [2014], the current film, Ant-Man [2015], is directed at a younger, pre-teen, perhaps 6-10 y/o, crowd.

Ant-Man's [2015] about Scott Lang [MCUniv] (played in the film by Paul Rudd) a former Bay Area / Silicon Valley electric engineer/computer-wiz/hacker, who spent time in jail for ripping-off credit card companies of ill-gotten gains, returning them (electronically) to the consumers who were (in his eyes) being shaken-down by them.

The film begins with him leaving prison.  Swearing off his former "Robin Hood" antics of "defending the little people" against the "(corporate) predators of the world," he nonetheless finds that he can't get a job, WHICH IS A PROBLEM, because WHILE HE WAS IN JAIL, his wife Maggie (played by Judy Greer) divorced him, marrying instead, straight arrow SFPD Officer Paxton (played by Bobby Cannavale) who's going to be honest good-example father-figure to Scott and Maggie's 6-7 y/o daughter Cassie (played by Abby Ryder Fortson).  Indeed, unless Scott can get a job, apartment and starts paying child-support, he's not gonna be able to much of cute-as-a-button Maggie at all.  But how's he gonna get back on his feet / do all that when EVEN A BASKIN' ROBBINS ICE-CREAM SHOP won't hire him? ;-)

Well, as much as Scott hates the idea, his former cell-mate Luis (played by Michael Peña) finds him a "breaking and entering" (burglary) "job" that his "housekeeper cousin" discovered.  "I'm done with crime," protests Scott, but with no other way to make some money, he gives in.  And so Scott, along with Luis' rather sorry "out of their depth" crew composed of Luis himself (Mexican) driving, slavic sounding "computer geek" Kurt (played by David Dastmalchian) and African American Dale (played by T.I.) who I'm not sure what he does but he's there, decide to do the job -- breaking into a rather upscale San Francisco house who's owner was away, with a large safe in the basement.

Yet, after the breaking into the house and then two door of the safe, all without being caught, all that Scott finds behind the second door of the safe is ... a strange, astronaut looking suit.  Just his luck: All that work, all that risk, for ... a stupid strange-looking suit.

Well, of course that suit had to do something ... it was the means by which Dr. Hank M. Pym [MCUniv] (played in the film quite well by Michael Douglas) was able to reduce and-or enlarge "the space between the atoms" of the wearer.  So put on the suit, press a button and ... the wearer becomes reduced to the size of an ant ... press the button again and the wearer returns to his/her normal size.

And Dr. Pym actually set Scott up, through Luis' cousin / Luis, purposefully staging the circumstances of the break-in of his own house as something of "an audition" for Scott.  Why?  Because Dr. Pym, who used to work for S.H.I.E.L.D. [wikip] [MCUniv] before he became disenchanted with the whole business of "protecting the world from Evil Doers" (because it was becoming so hard to distinguish "the good guys" from "the bad"), had "a bigger job"for him -- A former colleague of his, Darren Cross (played by Corey Stroll) was rumored to have finally reproduced the serum that made "ant-suit" work and, of course, needed to be stopped.  That involved breaking into Darren Cross' quite secure Silicon Valley company compound and destroying, completely, all his research.  Only someone like Scott who knew how to both break-and-enter, as well as hack, could do such a job successfully ... So despite Dr. Pim's daughter Hope's (played by Evangeline Lilly) initial misgivings (she thought she could do the job more easily ... she's known her father and his work all her life, etc), Scott / Ant-Man takes the job, and much ensues ...

Part of what ensues is not merely Scott being able to reduce himself to the size of an ant by means of Dr. Pym's Ant-Man suit, but also, through means of a kind of telepathic transponder that Dr. Pym ALSO invented, Scott being able to COMMUNICATE WITH ANTS, tell them what to do, make them "work with him" in remarkable "ant-like" ways.

It all makes for a fascinating adventure, and the climactic scene involving a battle between Scott/Ant-Man and Darren Cross (wearing his "Yellow Jacket" suit ;-) takes place on the train-set and among the other toys in 6-7 year old of Cassie's room even as she and "step-dad" Paxton watch it all play out ;-)

Yes, it is a fun story for the little ones ... even as it could actually scare the daylights out of adults as they start to imagine the chaos can become possible with the development of "nanotechnology" 

Honestly, a surprising film on a number of levels ;-)

<< NOTE - Do you like what you've been reading here?  If you do then consider giving a small donation to this Blog (sugg. $6 _non-recurring_) _every so often_ to continue/further its operation.  To donate just CLICK HERE.  Thank you! :-) >>

No comments:

Post a Comment