Ant-Man and The Wasp Was Good…The Marvel Ghost Character Was Better
With so many new elements that are introduced, Ant-Man and The Wasp was a movie unlike anything seen in the MCU to date. The movie successfully introduced the Quantum Realm, Evangeline Lilly’s Wasp, Lawrence Fishburne’s Bill Foster, Michelle Pfeiffer’s Janet Van Dyne, and in my opinion its best character, Hannah John-Kamen’s Ghost.
Don’t get me wrong, everybody in the movie is pretty flawless but I just didn’t care too much for the other characters. Paul Rudd was Paul Rudd. He’s charming, caring and has a sense of comedic timing among the best of all time. His friends, Luis, Kurt, and Dave, were characters that I didn’t enjoy before and still don’t enjoy now. I understand that they are secondary characters who probably aren’t deserving of any sort of dimension, however, appearing in two movies and using the same gimmicks makes me not want to pay attention. Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer give performances that are to be expected with two people who have been in Hollywood for as long as they have. Evangeline Lilly, as “to the point” and serious as she is, is a nice compliment to Paul Rudd.
Overall the movie boats a very good cast with one exception…
Walton Goggins’s Sonny Burch
He, more than any other character, is the reason that I contemplate even watching the movie again. As I sat in the theater, I wanted nothing more than for Giant Man to step on him or, at the very least a bus to run him over. If this sounds harsh, understand that his problem was not the actor that played him but rather that he lacked any sort of reason for the audience to care for him.
Sonny Burch is the same crime boss that has appeared in 1000’s of movies before. I’m sure you know the kind. The kind of spends the entirety of the move looking for a way to get more money. Unfortunately, that’s not good enough. After so many stellar villain roles as of late (Thanos, Killmonger, the Vulture) the expectations have become too high for a villain like Sonny to appear. Even for a secondary villain, (which he was), characters are it wasn’t good enough. The only thing the character brought, aside from his cookie cutter personality, was filler.
In a movie that took it upon itself to introduce so many new characters, the Marvel Ghost character stood tall. Not only are her visuals spectacular but her reasons for being a villain are extremely thought-provoking. I found myself having empathy towards and, to an extent, cheering for her. As I watched I kept asking myself, “If I were in her position would I do the same?” Her power to force that question, to make me question my own morality, is the sign of a good character.
After I walked out of the theater I couldn’t shake her. I found myself thinking that she and the Winter Soldier are alike. And I don’t mean the movie, I mean the characters are eerily similar. I found it interesting that the two share a mirrored backstory, have dealt with tremendous pain and loss, and each has spent time as a weapon under the control of the government. I love the Winter Soldier. His story of justice and injustice, his moral code, and his desire to not have his past dictate his future resonate with me on the highest level. I’m sure that’s probably why I enjoyed her so much.
Comic vs Movie
For those who don’t know, the Marvel Ghost character, as he is written in the comics, is drastically different from the Marvel Ghost that appeared here. The comic book iteration of the character is hell-bent on bringing down corporations no matter their cause. She is not. He also possesses a suit that gives him both intangibility and invisibility. She does not. Finally, the most obvious difference is that the Ghost of the comics is a man and she is not. For that, Marvel must be applauded. After watching Kate Blanchett’s Hela steal the show in Thor Ragnarok, it’s easy to understand why Marvel would want another female protagonist.
At the end of the day, I can’t tell you whether or not you should see Ant-Man and The Wasp. That’s for you to decide. What I can tell you, however, is that it’s not the titular characters that left me wanting to see it again.