September 11, 2019

The MCU Project: Ant Man and The Wasp [2018]

Ant Man and the Wasp [2018] is the second Ant Man movie from the MCU oeuvre, and you may remember how much Pete and Bernard enjoyed the first movie, and how I fell asleep. So I bring to this movie a sense of confusion, and spend the first 15 minutes feeling completely lost.

It begins with a recap scene in which Fully Grown Michael Douglas (FGMD) ((seriously, you’re going to have to read Pete’s review of Ant Man to make sense of this)) loses his wife (not Catherine Zeta Jones, although IMDB tells us that he wanted her to play this part, but Michelle Pfeiffer) when she goes sub-atomic in order to save something from something. In the next scene, Scott Lang/Ant Man ((or Scott Lang/Ant Man/Crap Bag, but that’s a bit of a mouthful)) is being an amazing dad in a cosy domestic setting, and we learn that he has three days remaining of his house arrest. I take it we all know what that implies for the plot of the movie?

Yes, shortly after learning this, we see him leaving the house in his pyjamas in the company of a woman who doesn’t like him. She assures him that their business will be concluded by lunchtime.

There follows much minification and embiggenment of cars and houses and salt cellars. Suddenly the woman who doesn’t like Scott Lang/Ant Man needs to be rescued, and FGMD hands Scott Lang/Ant Man a “prototype” Ant Man suit, with a glint in his eye such as the one seen in the eye of Willy Wonka when Violet Beauregarde eats the dodgy chewing gum and turns into a giant blueberry. Hilarious mis-sized antics ensue.

This is purported to be an Action Comedy, and does indeed have some amusing moments. My favourite was when Bernard pointed out how much Larry Fucking Fishburne resembles Dr Pockless ((and not only for his sartorial elegance)). Have you ever seen them in the same room? I haven’t.

At one point, Scott Lang/Ant Man asks the question, “do you guys just put the word ‘quantum’ in front of everything?” which is a good demonstration of how futuristic technology is discussed, using nonsensical combinations of words that viewers are never intended to understand. I was particularly intrigued to know how Michelle Pfeiffer’s mascara survived 30 years in the quantum realm. I consulted Pete and Bernard, both known to have a better grasp of science than myself, and they replied “because it’s the quantum realm.” I asked them why, then, did she age (a bit)? “Shuddup,” they said.

Three out of the four female characters in the movie have serious daddy issues; and given that the entire premise of this film is the rescuing of a female character, it’s clear that the marvellous minds at Marvel learned nothing from Black Panther about female empowerment. The smaller rescue of FGMD’s daughter Hope (the one who doesn’t like Scott Lang/Ant Man, although there is a tedious romantic subplot shoehorned in, so it turns out that she protested too much) is an important plot point, and the other adult female character Ava/The Ghost also has to be saved.

Nonetheless, I managed to keep my eyes open and pay, ooh, let’s say about 60-70% attention to this movie, which makes it one of the more enjoyable of the project so far.


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