Film review: Ant-Man and the Wasp is entertaining but lacks ambition
PUBLISHED: 09:45 17 August 2018 | UPDATED: 06:07 20 August 2018
Paul Rudd reprises the role of Ant-Man for this sequel to the 2015 original, which also sees Evangeline Lilly return as the Wasp and promoted to co-lead.
Her character becomes the first female to headline a film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s ten year history.
Director Peyton Reed, who was a late replacement on the first Ant-Man movie, gets the chance to oversee proceedings from the very beginning this time around.
The film deftly side steps the events of Avengers: Infinity War, instead setting things beforehand and following on directly from 2016’s Captain America: Civil War.
While under house arrest, Scott Lang – AKA Ant-Man – is recruited by his former associates Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Hope Van Dyne (Lilly) to help rescue Hope’s missing mother from the mysterious quantum realm.
Michelle Pfeiffer joins the cast as the long lost Janet Van Dyne but is largely underused in a bit part role.
Another new addition is Brit Hannah John-Kamen who stars as the film’s main antagonist ‘The Ghost’, an individual who can pass through walls.
The Yorkshire-born actress brings an impressive intensity to the role, however with the only other obstacle in our hero’s way being Walton Goggins’ low-level street criminal, the film suffers from a distinct lack of threat.
With a smaller scope than many of its predecessors the film focuses on just one corner of the now huge Marvel universe, and while this is not necessarily a bad thing, without the now customary tie-ins, it struggles to shed the feeling of anticlimax.
Despite bringing his usual charm to the role of Ant-Man, Paul Rudd never quite hits the comedy heights of the previous film and even the humour of Michael Pena’s Luis, by far the funniest part of the original, never quite lands.
Reed does get some entertaining mileage out of the character’s ability to change size, and delivers some inventive action scenes involving shrinking cars and buildings.
Overall, Ant-Man and the Wasp is watchable but lightweight and lacks the ambition of its predecessors.
It is let down by a wafer thin plot and a lack of jeopardy and, as a result, will go down as one of the least memorable entries into Marvel’s Cinematic Universe.
Showing at Stowmarket Regal from August 24.