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‘Ant-Man’ Reviews: Critics Say New Marvel Film Is ‘Lighthearted’ Fun But ‘Feels Patchwork at Times’

After gestating for nine years and with four credited writers, it ”plays like a charmingly tacky jet-suit robot picture for kids,“ one reviewer says

Whether they loved or hated “Ant-Man,” reviewers are in agreement that Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang is not your average superhero.

Walt Disney and Marvel’s miniature-sized film currently boasts a strong rating of 78 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, with many critics praising the movie for taking a humorous, lighthearted approach to saving the day. Unlike “Captain America” or “Iron Man,” Lang isn’t out to save the world, which according to some reviewers, makes the film more light-hearted fun.

As one critic pointed out, this action flick was nine years in the making and has four screenwriters to its credit (Edgar Wright, Joe Cornish, Adam McKay and Rudd). The fact that “Ant-Man” actually made it to the big screen is a surprise to a number of reviewers, and the idea that some of them enjoyed the final product is even more shocking.

Alonso Duralde wrote in his review for TheWrap:

“Not that the other Marvel movies haven’t relied on familiar plot turns, but ‘Ant-Man’ doesn’t provide enough dazzle camouflage to cover its tracks. The supposedly humorous sidekicks are grating, the love interest (Evangeline Lilly in a Louise Brooks bob and matching power pantsuits) generates zero sparks, and while the climactic battle spawns a memorable sight gag or two, the emotional stakes are never such that the eventual big showdown will have anyone gripping their armrests.”

David Edelstein of Vulture wrote:

“The best thing about Marvel’s ‘Ant-Man’ is that despite a computer-effects team larger than the population of Scandinavia, it plays like a charmingly tacky jet-suit robot picture for kids, the kind Japan used to churn out every week for a couple of thousand yen. It doesn’t have that familiar Marvel bloat.”

Mike Ryan of Uproxx wrote:

“Look, the fact that ‘Ant-Man’ is at least serviceable seems like a testament to everyone involved. It’s certainly not bad — and there are great moments. It just feels patchwork at times, which I suppose is pretty much what anyone should expect from a script that’s been gestating for nine years and now has four credited writers that are all famous people.”

Glenn Kenny of Roger Ebert wrote:

“The movie, directed by Peyton Reed (‘Down With Love,’ ‘Bring It On’) and starring Paul Rudd, isn’t exactly or entirely fluffy, but it’s pretty damn agile, and as a result provides the most pure, uncomplicated fun, and even joy, of any Marvel picture I’ve seen.”

Angela Watercutter of Wired wrote:

“We’ll never know what Wright’s version would’ve looked like (probably awesome), but the story as it is plays perfectly to Rudd’s strengths; he may not come off as a superhero type, despite the new contractually obligated six-pack, but his sardonic humor is so unique it could be trademarked.”

Christopher Orr of The Atlantic wrote:

“It will come as a surprise to no one who’s ever watched Paul Rudd that the star displays his customary, low-key charm in the role of Scott Lang, the well-meaning burglar who is unexpectedly recruited into Ant-Manhood. Michael Douglas is likewise solid as Hank Pym, the aging scientist who invented and formerly wore the Ant-Man costume.”

Dave Smith of Business Insider wrote:

“The movie is lighthearted in every sense of the word. There’s no overwhelming or incoherent plot line, and your enjoyment of the movie doesn’t rely on seeing or enjoying the other Marvel films. It’s also not about saving the world or the universe; sure, Ant-Man needs to stop a super-powered villain to save his daughter and stop an evil corporation from gaining a powerful weaponized suit, but the stakes aren’t nearly as lofty as other Marvel films.”

“Ant-Man” opens in theaters on July 17.

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