Ant-Man (blu-ray)

Don’t worry, this is not going to be like a lot of those reviews you read on Amazon. You know the ones where someone turns a blu-ray review into a discussion about how their home theatre setup cost more than your automobile. All I have is a basic TV and blu-ray player, and it does the job. Also, I am not going to get technical and bloviate about black level and bit rate, because 99.9% of you don’t care.

Having seen all the films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe on blu-ray, I think that Ant-Man is the one movie that works far better on the big screen. Or on the biggest television possible. It’s not that it looks bad on blu-ray–it doesn’t. It’s that with a larger screen, you get a far better sense of scope. When Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) shrinks, you need to have a concept of exactly how tiny he is; which is something that comes across well in the theatre. Maybe it’s just me.

On the “making of” feature, director Peyton Reed talks about how Marvel allowed him to make Ant-Man his own film. I said that after the film’s release, I wouldn’t bring up Edgar Wright–and I won’t. So, I’ll just leave that there.

Ant-Man is the funniest movie in the MCU; while Thor is the most unexpectantly funny. Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas, Evangeline Lilly, Michael Pena, and Cory Stoll are all talented dramatic actors, but the very nature of Ant-Man leads itself to comedy. The “shrinking person” film is a comedic premise–at least, it can be. When danger arrives, it can be very funny. As you get to know the characters, and the stakes are raised, the viewer is far more emotionally invested. What was hilarious in the second act, becomes tense and thrilling in the third act. That part still comes across on a smaller screen. At the end of the day, all the special effects in the world won’t make you care about a character. That job is left to the actors and filmmakers. And that, is the real success of Ant-Man.

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