I am a big fan of the Marvel movies. The MCU has pulled off what is quite possibly the biggest undertaking in Hollywood history over the past decade: creating a continued shared universe that serves and overarching storyline from film to film. Bravo and kudos to them for getting this right. But there have been some faltered steps along the way, and unfortunately the latest outing, Ant-Man & The Wasp, has a pretty major one.
The movie has a great setup. The villain, Ghost, is doing what she’s doing to literally just stay alive. She’s in constant pain, and requires certain things to keep from fading from existence. That’s a compelling villain right there. What she is after is in direct conflict with the Heroes’ need, to rescue the missing Janet from the Quantum Realm. They discover that if they save Jan then Ghost dies. If they save Ghost then Jan is lost forever. That’s some great conflict. But unfortunately, and I don’t know how much of this is Disney’s influence, they end up watering the resolution down to practically nothing by giving weird Quantum Realm magic powers to Jan for no reason which she uses to cure Ghost. It erases all that conflict that had been occurring and makes it mostly a waste. Now if they had had the courage to follow that conflict through to the end, imagine the more impactful resolution there’d been. They could have A: Continued their quest to rescue Jan, and therefore allow Ghost to ultimately die. Despite her being villainous, it would call into question the levels of heroism these characters truly wield and even superheroes sometimes fail, or B: Taken the steps to save Ghost, and therefore lose Jan altogether, which is the embodiment of sacrifice that superheroes are defined by, although would certainly create a massive wedge between Hope and Hank moving forward. Either of those outcomes would have been powerful and noteworthy, much more than then convenient ribbon wrapping we were given.
(But perhaps the mid-credits scene made up for it? I dunno, who am I to judge? Just my two cents on a story choice.)
Until next time!