Paul Rudd is back as the minuscule superhero Ant-Man and, once again, the entertainment is anything but undersized.
As goofy ex-con hero Scott Land, Rudd delivers big laughs and there are some whopping thrills and spills as well when he joins Evangeline Lilly’s spunky Hope Van Dyne, aka the Wasp, and her father, maverick scientist Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), on a mission to rescue her long-missing mother (Michelle Pfeiffer) from 30 years of exile in the sub-atomic Quantum Realm.
As you might expect, their race-against-time quest hits its fair share of hazards, not least those thrown up by black-market arms dealer Sonny Burch (Walton Goggins) and by Hannah John-Kamen’s anguished, space-shifting villain Ghost, both of whom want to get their hands on Hank’s technology.
When it counts, the action fairly zings along, yet it is the little things – appropriately enough – that set the movie’s tone. Take Scott’s mundane concerns when the story opens. He is trying to start a security business with former cellmate Luis (Michael Peña once more proving a hilarious sidekick) but his participation in that giant superhero dustup in Captain America: Civil War has placed him under house arrest – a situation ripe for humour in itself.
On top of this, Scott’s Ant-Man suit is playing up, causing him to change size at inopportune moments – and providing returning director Peyton Reed with further occasions for comedy as well as moments of peril. The laughs never let up, even when the action is at its most furious – look out for a brilliant gag featuring a Hello Kitty Pez dispenser in the midst of a frantic chase through the streets of San Francisco.