In fact, if it wasn't for all the formula-driven bad guys, perilous situations, and narrow escapes, Antz would be exactly like any other Allen film. But this is animation, and that means kid-pleasing effects must plaster the screen. Sadly, this hurts the story to the point where Antz will quickly get lost in the shuffle of animated films coming out over the next year, despite its unique touches. To make matters worse, some of the more gruesome scenes, including an ant-termite battle that would leave Private Ryan wetting himself, are decidedly not for children.
Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. And if the humdrum trailer for A Bug's Life is any indication, Antz is going to be the best we'll see out of computer animation for awhile, at least until Toy Story 2. But, to paraphrase Z himself, a boy-meets-girl, boy-loses-girl, boy-changes-underlying-social-structure movie... just isn't that original. Even if it is about ants.
More story, less silly antics. Maybe then I'll be inclined to put down my can of Raid....
Allen and co. head for termite terror.
Run time: 83 mins
In Theaters: Friday 2nd October 1998
Box Office Worldwide: $171.8M
Distributed by: Dreamworks
Production compaines: DreamWorks Animation, DreamWorks SKG, Pacific Data Images (PDI)
Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 95%
Fresh: 84 Rotten: 4
IMDB: 6.6 / 10
Starring: Woody Allen as Z, Dan Aykroyd as Chip, Anne Bancroft as Queen, Danny Glover as Barbatus, Gene Hackman as General Mandible (voice), Jane Curtin as Muffy (voice), Jennifer Lopez as Azteca (voice), John Mahoney as Grebs / Drunk Scout / Additional Voices (voice), Paul Mazursky as Psychologist (voice), Grant Shaud as Foreman (voice), Sylvester Stallone as Weaver (voice), Sharon Stone as Princess Bala (voice), Christopher Walken as Colonel Cutter (voice)