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Friday, 24 July 2015

Ant Man

The character of Ant Man is over 50 years old – 53+ to be precise.  It debuted in 1962 and about 17 years on, he appeared on Saturday Night Live.  Of course, it wasn’t remotely popular as the other “mans” around that time which would probably explain the 5 decades that we’ve had to wait for the big screen debut of a character which will be part of the Avengers next year.

But until then, like any other Marvel movie, walk into the theatre, strap on your seat-belts (hold onto the arm rests on your seat – they really need to provide seat belts for a movie like this) and enjoy this recreation of a 50 year old comic character.  I had to ask myself at the end of it all – When was the last time that Marvel actually disappointed you with a movie? The answer was of course – NEVER.

Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) is released from San Quentin prison, San Francisco for a high profile burglary that he committed a while back.  He has a Masters in Electrical Engineering but has to settle for a job at the local Baskin Robbins.  All of this to get visitation rights to his 5 year old daughter Cassie (Abby Ryder Fortson).

But, as luck would have it, Baskin Robbins finds everything and Scott is left without a job.  So he chooses to go back to commit a heist that should sort him out for a bit.  All he finds at the house is a motorcycle suit.  So much for the hi-tech stuff he uses to break-in.  Of course, his curiosity gets the better of him.

He dons the suit and voila! You have Ant Man – A human being who can shrink and expand at the touch of a regulator button on the suit.  Why not shrink man or micro man? Because he uses his mind powers through an ear piece to talk to ants of all varieties.  Don’t mistake him to be weak because he can pack quite a punch.

A slow start notwithstanding, Ant Man picks up pace in about 20 minutes but one has to wait till the 2nd half to really enjoy the roller coaster ride.  Director Peyton Reed is not really associated with the superhero genre but seems to be a really quick learner.  He keeps it crisp and delays the tempo till just the right point.  Any longer and you would have lost interest.

Paul Rudd as Ant Man and Evangeline Lilly (Tauriel from Hobbit) form a great pair but it is the evergreen, charismatic, septuagenarian known as Michael Kirk Douglas who steals the show. Douglas plays the scientist Dr. Hank Pym who invents the Pym Particle that allows Ant Man to come into existence. Douglas’ presence is actually a tad unfair to the rest of the cast who get completely overshadowed but all to a good end.

There is a lot of technical mumbo jumbo through the movie so pay attention to the dialogue.  And of course, as always, wait for the post credit revelations and this time there are 2 of them so be patient till all credits finish rolling.  7.5 on 10.  I genuinely cannot remember if a Marvel movie ever disappointed me.

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