Film Trailers

A Paul Rudd Kind of Day: Ant-Man and the Wasp & Mute Trailers

Who doesn’t love Paul Rudd? Well, apparently this Facebook group doesn’t, but I’m assuming they’re doing a parody because, really, how can you hate Paul Rudd?

So, why not start off your day with a double helping of Rudd:

Ant-Man and the Wasp Trailer

Actually, it’s silly of me to pretend like this is a new trailer. It debuted yesterday. It already has 5.5 million views on YouTube. Heck, the obligatory reaction videos from Collider and too many YouTube Channels to count have thousands of views a piece. Even Vox – left-leaning, political news-oriented Vox! – posted a reaction article yesterday containing their three favorite GIFS from the trailer.

I dragged my feet here because, frankly, I’m still deciding whether or not I’m even going to write about trailers anymore. After The Last Jedi, I don’t think fan culture is in a healthy place, and our endless overanalyzing of trailers to get clickbait articles or videos is a part of that. However, Ant-Man is one my favorite MCU movies. This trailer for the sequel primarily delivers on the parting promise of its predecessor, which is to show us the Wasp in action. As the lady once said, it’s about damn time, and she looks suitably badass. My instinct here is not to cheer the Wasp but instead to nod approvingly, the distinction being that post-Wonder Woman we shouldn’t have to scream “Look, a female superhero!” but instead simply nod along “Yeah, it’s a female superhero. What’s the big deal? We have lots of those now.” Except, of course, we don’t. Not yet, at least not on the big screen. But we’re getting there.

The trailer does also answer the question of whether or not, post-Civil War, Scott Lang will be on the run: apparently, yes, but not before being put on house arrest. How exactly that reflects on his role in Infinity War (which will come out two months earlier) or speaks to Ant-Man and the Wasp’s placement in the MCU timeline remains to be seen.

Mostly, this trailer gives us more of the same comedic spirit of the first movie with, perhaps, an ever-so-slightly more serious tone. For example, that opening question Scott poses to Hope would probably have been played for satire in the first film’s marketing campaign. The reveal of who he’s posing the question to would have been the joke (like maybe he’s actually asking his daughter) or at least their response would have been a broader punchline than Hope’s more resolute, “I’ll guess we’ll never know, but if you had you would have never been caught.”

But it’s the sequel. They don’t have to work quite so hard to explain how different this is going to be from the rest of the MCU. Mostly, just show us Hope kicking ass, drop in some quick shots of the villain(s), tease Ant-Man as Giant Man, and close on another “only in an Ant-Man” movie sight gag. Check, check, and check. Job well done, Marvel.

Ant-Man and the Wasp is due July 6, 2018.

Mute Trailer

Paul Rudd is not the star here; his mustache is!

No, seriously, the star of Mute, Duncan Jones’ long-delayed fourth movie, is Alexander Skarsgard, but, true to the title, he’s playing a mute bartender, quite possibly the perfect character for such a gorgeous, but dramatically limited actor. So, somebody has to step up to provide actual dialogue and exposition, and in this trailer the person who most fits the bill is Paul Rudd, delivering some rather peculiar one-liners, threats, and I-don’t-know-whats. The plot, from a script Jones co-wrote with Michael Robert Jones, involves Skarsgard venturing into the underbelly of future Berlin to find his girlfriend. Rudd and an oddly blonde Justin Theroux co-star as “a pair of irreverent US Army surgeons on a mission all their own.” They team with Skarsgard, but also seem to be working slightly against him. I don’t know.

It’s all very Blade Runner-meets-John Wick-meets-A.I. Because it’s Duncan Jones and he made Moon and Source Code we have to pay attention, but because it’s Duncan Jones and he made Warcraft we have to be skeptical. Moreover, this is a genuine Netflix Original, which on the TV side of things usually portends greatness but on the film side of things usually means an unpredictable roll of the dice (could be great, could be Fun Mom Dinner). The beauty of it all, of course, is that should you want to roll the dice on Mute it won’t cost you anything other than your time, and, frankly, it’s a new Duncan Jones sci-fi movie. I’m going to watch it. What about you?

Mute drops February 23rd.

Parting Mute Trivia


  1. I think we can talk about trailers as long as we focus on if the trailer is good or not instead of delving in wild speculations – something I hate to do anyway. I never watch bit by bit breakdowns because I don’t want to discover the spoiler in the corner.

    Loved the way the Ant-man trailer screamed “the Wasp is coooooool”. It still looks more like a heist movie than the romcom it is supposed to be, but hey, I am game. Whatever happens in Infinity war, this will most likely be a nice, light dessert after the elaborate main course…but I also look forward to the starter Black Panther will provide.

    And, hey, it would be fatal to stop with one female lead Superhero movie. Yes, the success of Wonder Woman was the first step, but there will be way too many people claiming that she is something special because she is not just the best known female superhero in the world, but one of the best known superheroes period. We need Ant-man and the Wasp as well as Captain Marvel do well in order to not leave any doubt that Superheroes can be everything as long as they are part of a great story.

    1. I’ve just grown weary of this sort of fan culture ecosystem which has built up around frame-by-frame trailer breakdowns, obsessive predictions, exhaustively detailed explanations of the comic book history, etc. Heck, at one point or another I’ve done all of those things myself. Not doing it anymore, though. I’d rather tell you about some cool old movie I just found (like Fade to Black) than crap out 1000 words on what to make of that one second shot of Laurence Fishbourne in the Ant-Man and the Wasp trailer the same way I recently came across an Uproxx 800-word article about Al Pacino’s one line of dialogue in the trailer for HBO’s Joe Paterno movie.

      And now I’ll get off my soapbox.

      Because you are ultimately right. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the, “Hey, if you haven’t seen it yet here’s the new trailer and here’s what I think about it.” We’re supposed to get excited for these things. That’s what being a fan is all about! And Ant-Man and the Wasp looks like it’ll be a lot of fun.

      “Whatever happens in Infinity war, this will most likely be a nice, light dessert after the elaborate main course.”

      With this paired with Infinity War and the first film paired with Age of Ultron, they’ve definitely settled on Ant-Man as kind of being the MCU’s palette cleanser franchise, which is a good role for it, really.

      “It still looks more like a heist movie than the romcom it is supposed to be, but hey, I am game.”

      Between those two, it definitely leans more heist movie, but I was also getting a cop chase vibe as well. Fewer moments of them covertly infiltrating tight corners, more of them on the run. Plus, also, just Michael Douglas shrinking an entire building into a piece of carry-on luggage, which doesn’t apply here but was worth mentioning since it’s hilarious and I forgot to talk about it in the article.

      “We need Ant-man and the Wasp, as well as Captain Marvel, do well in order to not leave any doubt that Superheroes can be everything as long as they are part of a great story.”

      No argument here. My point was more that for this to be normalized we need to reach a point where it barely warrants mention that we have a female-led or black-led whatever, and after Wonder Woman, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow we’ve had plenty of female superheroes lately. Now we’re getting more, and their success or failure shouldn’t have to carry the burden of justifying the existence of all female-led superhero projects. Of course, we don’t live in a world where things are exactly as they should be (in so many ways more important than just representation in movies, of course). So, yeah, the Wasp needs to kick ass and ditto for Captain Marvel, but it sucks to have to even think of it like that.

      Oh, btw, thinking back to the hype cycle with the first Ant-Man isn’t it nice that there are no reports of behind the scenes drama or questionable production decisions on this one. Petyon Reed did a great job with the first movie on a tight schedule, and the BTS drama wasn’t really reflected on the screen. But it’s nice to not have to even think about that kind of stuff with the sequel.

      1. I look forward to what he can do without having to work off what someone else did. I always felt it quite unfair that everyone acted as if Wright would have automatically done a superior movie, even though some of the best ideas in it actually came from Reed and his team.

        The carry-on building is funny (kind of peeved that they used if for the trailer), but it is better not to think about the logistic…I mean this thing can’t have any gas or power connection in its enlarged state, and has somewhere giant tires and the plastic holder in it.

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