ALTERNATE TAKE: Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018) by Peyton Reed
Review by Zach Dennis
One point that seems to appear in most reviews of Ant-Man and the Wasp is less in reference to the actual movie and is more a statement about the condition outside — it’s hot so maybe a couple hours in the air condition watching a movie will be a nice escape.
It’s true. Recently while watching a Texas Rangers baseball game, the announcer mentioned that it was one of the hottest games at Globe Life Park of all-time with a high of 107 degrees scorching the Rangers about as badly as the 15-3 final score.
Ant-Man and the Wasp is a well enough put together blockbuster, leaning on the effortless charm of Paul Rudd (a little too much, honestly). Evangeline Lilly and Michael Douglas are fine, if not dealing with poorly written characters, but one of the standouts is Hannah John-Kamen as Ava/Ghost the villain that is pitted against the titled superheroes and their quest for justice.
But the real villain of this movie is the heat that is causing people to escape into the confines of a cool theater. The greatest threat is climate change and what kind of world it will leave us in.
According to Scientific American, when talking with scientists about climate change, they said that “increasing temperatures are changing the cycles of plants and trees and extending the pollination period to exacerbate allergies.” On top of that, they added that, “limited agricultural growth will severely strain the world's ability to feed itself.”
In a recap on Earth & Space Science News, a 2017 Climate Science Special report said bluntly that “it is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century.” Think about that. The fault is less on our ancestors far off in the 18th or 19th century, but what a lot of the current generation of people in the 40 and older range, and their parents, did to this world.
The sickest part is most of them don’t care. Earlier this year, Republican lawmakers, Ted Cruz (47 years old), Rand Paul (55 years old), James Lankford (50 years old) and Jim Inhofe (83 years old), asked to shut down funding for a National Science Foundation educational course for meteorologists on the effects of climate change.
In 2015 prior to his presidential campaign, NPR posted a transcript of an interview between Cruz and Steve Inskeep and David Greene in which Cruz said, “the scientific evidence doesn’t support global warming,” going on to add that it is more about “liberal politicians who want government power over the economy, the energy sector and every aspect of our lives.”
In 2017 on Jake Tapper’s program on CNN, Paul said that Tapper “need(s) to make sure that viewers know that most of (climate scientists) models ha(ve) been wrong,” adding that “they haven’t been good at predicting things.”
It’s worth noting that, again, this is shared by the guilty generation. Earlier this year, The Verge spoke with Kiera O’Brien, a 19-year-old Harvard student and president of the Harvard Republican Club, in which she said, “to see national Republicans failing to have a coherent strategy and policy surrounding this issue has been difficult.” O’Brien, along with 23 other Republican clubs, joined a bipartisan effort to combat climate change.
The International Panel on Climate Change “predicts that increases in global mean temperature of less than 1.8 to 5.4 degrees Fahrenheit above (the year) 1990 levels will produce beneficial impacts in some regions and harmful ones in others. Net annual costs will increase over time as global temperatures increase.”
According to NASA and the Third and Fourth National Climate Assessment Reports, there are a number of changes that we expect in the future, including:
Change will continue through this century and beyond
Temperatures will continue to rise
Frost-free season (and growing season) will lengthen
Changes in precipitation patterns
More droughts and heat waves
Hurricanes will become stronger and more intense
Arctic likely to become ice-free
It’s important that we begin to make immediate changes to help curb this because this is less about what we personally have to deal with, but what our children, our grandchildren and just the world as a whole has to live with when we’re gone. That’s a tough pill to swallow for most people that inhabit the thinking that what happens after they die is not their concern — they’re just happy to be along for the ride now.
Honestly, fuck those people because that’s the same dismissive thinking by the Ted Cruzes, Rand Pauls, James Lankfords and Jim Inhofes of the world, who are most intent on securing the votes of the guilty generation than actually sitting down, reckoning with the ramifications of theirs and those who came before them’s actions and doing something about it. This negligence will be their legacy and they don’t even spend a thought while taking a shit to give it any credence.
Complacency towards action to help others is lazy and evil to do. It can rear its head in any direction even on the Atlanta-based lots of Marvel Studios, which feature half-cooked ideas being made into two hour long features.
Ant-Man and the Wasp isn’t a vindictive or evil movie, but there’s something very half-cooked in its bones. It presents these moral reprehensions from Douglas’ character, Hank Pym, who set in motion the villainy of Ghost due to his own ego and lack of self-awareness — an issue that never is resolved but swept under a blanket. Glad he found his wife after many years separated, but it doesn’t make you any less of a total prick.
It’s difficult to parse these Marvel movies together anymore, but according to the slew of facts above, at least we won’t have to much longer.