Ant-Man 3D Blu-ray Review
With the onslaught of superhero movies over the last decade, it’s really tough to pull off an origin story these days. It’s a tough situation for Marvel because on one hand, they have to give smaller characters their own origin story so they can eventually join the Avengers. But on the other hand, there’s only so many ways to tell the story of someone becoming a superhero. ANT-MAN perfectly embodies the struggles Marvel will face as they try to move away from Iron Man, Captain America and Thor and into Black Panther, Dr. Strange and Miss Marvel; we know how their origin stories are going to turn out, even if we’re not that familiar with the characters.
Scott Lang (Rudd) is an ex-con trying to go straight, but after struggling to make a decent living and needing money to support his daughter, he agrees to lead a break-in of someone’s house. That someone happens to be Hank Pym (Douglas) and Lang soon learns that he was set up once Pym recruits Lang to take over and become Ant-Man. Pym needs Lang to break into Pym Technologies and foil the plans of Darren Cross (Corey Stoll), who has recreated Pym’s discovery and plans to use it as a weapon. Pym’s daughter Hope (Lilly) is reluctantly helping Lang on this mission, as are Lang’s fellow ex-con friends.
The idea of someone wearing a suit that allows them to shrink instantly is pretty intriguing, but too much of the film is spent developing Scott Lang and his origin story just isn’t necessary, at least not to the extent that we ended up with. Once he put on the suit and became Ant-Man, he was never in any real danger and so there was never a decent level of intensity. The scene where Ant-Man and Yellow Jacket fight in the little girl’s room was fun and clever, but that was about it. The controversy with Edgar Wright’s script and subsequent exit from the project is well documented, but I don’t think it impacted the final product too much. There were some jokes that were very Wright-ish, but there weren’t too many ways Ant-Man was going to end.
There are a couple of things Marvel tried to do with ANT-MAN that they hadn’t done with their other superheroes. The first is focus on the second iteration of the comic hero rather than the first. In the film, Hank Pym had a backstory of being Ant-Man and was turning over the reins to Lang. That created a whole world of Ant-Man that the audience wasn’t privy to, which added a bit of mystery to the character. The second thing Marvel did was make Lang more human. Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Bruce Banner and of course, Thor, were all single men with nothing to lose. But Lang has a daughter and a reason to become a superhero that doesn’t revolve around vanity, patriotism or an accident. It will be interesting to see how Marvel deals with this in Infinity War, where I’m guessing all the characters will be in some sort of peril. Maybe Ant-Man and Hawkeye can trade parenting tips while everyone else is out there fighting.
Despite a couple of nuances to ANT-MAN, the movie is incredibly formulaic and predictable. I’m not sure that’s a bad thing, but I found myself wanting it to be over so we could skip to the end credits and get a hint of how he’s going to fit into the next Avengers film. We may have reached a point in the Marvel Cinematic Universe where origin films aren’t necessary. I think Ant-Man could have been introduced in an established franchise and then had his backstory explained in his standalone film without making the audience sit through a full-on origin story.
ANT-MAN 3D BLU-RAY REVIEW
I haven’t been too impressed with Marvel’s 3D offerings, but ANT-MAN was one of the better 3D presentations. The character lends itself to good 3D and we got some nifty effects.
Video: The 2D transfer was just as nice as the 3D transfer.
Audio: The audio was fine.
I knew the Blu-ray wouldn’t address the departure of Edgar Wright, but I was hoping for a comment or two about the situation. Unfortunately, the situation is never addressed and it’s as if he was never involved.
Commentary with Peyton Reed and Paul Rudd: This is a fast-paced, great commentary that covers just about everything you wanted to know (with the noted exception above). Rudd and Reed really cared about this film and you can tell Rudd was deeply involved every step of the way.
Deleted and Extended Scenes (8:36): Eight scenes in total, some of which wouldn’t have fit in with the movie and others were forgettable.
Making of an Ant-Sized Heist: A How-To Guide (14:32): The cast and crew sit down and talk about the film and it’s connection to the overall Marvel-verse.
Let’s Go To the Macroverse (8:05): This featurette focuses on the special effects used in the film.
Gag Reel (3:21): The cast flub some lines and have a good laugh.
WHIH NewsFront: Four newsclips from the film.
Photo Gallery, Music Video, Previews