JMC Student Georgia Lyons reviews the recent release of Ant Man...
It will always sadden me that Ant-Man isn’t a mutant creature crossed between an ant and a man, like in the movie ‘The Fly’ (1986) but just a man, in a suit, the size of an ant.
As I’m sure we all know, the new movie Ant-Man is Marvels latest adaptation of their comic Ant-Man. The film
follows the heroic journey of character ‘Scott Lang’ as he becomes Ant-Man, saves the day and redeems himself from being a criminal/burglar. Now I could go into talking about the comics before I talk about the film but I wont, knowing how many marvel fans are out there, I probably wont do the comics justice. I will simply review the film.
I’m sure we’re all aware by now that Ant-Man isn’t actually an ant, once again to my disappointment, he’s just a man who can shrink down to its size.
The film Ant-Man runs for one hour and fifty-seven minutes and it’s jam packed with that marvel action and humor we all love. Paul Rudd (whom apparently some people don’t know. I mean come on guys, clueless, anchorman, wet hot American summer, he’s even mike in friends!) Plays Scott Lang, Michael Douglas plays Hank Pym, Evangeline Lilly stars as Hope Van Dyne (Hank Pym’s daughter) and we have great cameos from Corey Stoll, Michael Pen, Bobby Cannavale, Judy Greer and of course Stan Lee. (It wouldn’t be a marvel film without him)
Ant-Man starts back in with Howard Stark, Penny Carter and Mitchell Carson (he’s totally a bad guy) trying to re create the ‘Pym Particle’ (which is what shrinks Ant Man). The scene ends with Hank Pym punching Mitchell Carson in the face and it’s all wonderful.
Then we get into the good stuff, We meet Scott Lang. He’s being beaten up and the audience is meant to believe he’s super tough and did something wrong, but in reality he hates violence and he’s just not that kind of guy. Throughout the film we can see the writers have a good sense of humor using lines like, “Baskin Robbins always finds out” which is something that Scott Lang doesn’t seem to know.
The writers understood that the idea of Ant-Man is a little silly,
a man shrinking down to the size of an ant and beating people up? It’s comical. They also understood that with an actor such as Paul Rudd, who is big in the comedy scene, you can’t not have him playing something who doesn’t have a sense of humor. That being said, there are some lines in the film added to play on the comedy that aren’t totally needed. Other than these storywriters Edgar Wright (whom I love by the way, he does films like Shaun of the bead and Hot Fuzz) and Joe Cornish have done a great job creating a film that has smashed the box office.
The sound/music in the film is in my option what makes it amazing. Christophe Beck composed the music and it honestly changes the way you watch the film once you notice it. Beck noted in an interview, “I wanted to write a score in the grand symphonic tradition of my favorite superhero movies, with a sweeping scope and a big catchy main theme. What makes this score stand out among other Marvel movies, though, is a sneaky sense of fun since it is, after all, not only a superhero movie, but also a heist comedy.” (McCue, M 2015)
And it honestly does just that. Through the beginning of the movie, the only main instruments you hear are strings, and you’re soon to catch onto what Ant-Man’s theme is. As you get closer to the end and the all important fight scene you start to hear more of the brass family and it just gives deeper, darker feel to it cause the sense are losing that sense of funny and begin to get serious, you really need good sound to help that idea along.
There were also moments of hearing theme songs that we already know, such as The Avengers theme and Captain America’s. (Such is intended as Ant Man is meeting/fighting The Falcon at the time) The only song not composed by Beck is Plainsong by The Cure, which comes on during one of the best scenes in the film.
Then you have the sound design! Which is at it’s greatest when Ant-Man shrinks down to size. You get a distant feeling towards all the sounds, like you’ve got muffled hearing, but then suddenly you had the sharp and piercing voice of Michael Douglas. And the flying ants sound like helicopters! It’s all amazing and all adds onto the comedy side of the film. Like I said, in my honest option the sound is what makes the film. Sound is what makes every film, you may not notice it but without it you would.
In total I’ve seen this film three times now. Once for my own enjoyment, and twice to write this interview (Which sadly this review will come out as Ant-Man is leaving theatres) I’m also sad to say that three times is enough to see this film. I personally won't be running out to a cinema again to catch one last viewing.
I don’t really have a bone to pick with the movie, it looks great, the sound is amazing, the storyline works, there are very little continuity errors (that I could notice anyway) to me it just got old fast. But in saying that, it’s still a film you should see, and you’ll need to if you want to watch any future Marvel film. Go and rent it on iTunes or buy the DVD or wait till it’s out on Netflix, but either way it’s a film you should see.
And of course if you’re a Marvel fan like myself, you will have already seen it.
By Georgia Lyons
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McCue, M 2015, Composer Christophe Beck talks score for Ant-Man, We are movie geeks,