Anthony's Film Review

Antz (1998)

The theme of individuality versus conformity is explored quite well in this animated feature...

Antz is one of the earliest releases from DreamWorks Pictures and one of the studio's first animated films. Interestingly, it was released not too long after Pixar's A Bug's Life, another animated movie centering on talking insects. So at the time, Antz appeared to be a new competitor in computer animated films and a potential copycat.

However, these are minor points. They should not distract you from the strengths of this movie. Antz works because of the main character and the central theme of the film. The protagonist is an ant named Z (Woody Allen). He is dismayed that his unique characteristics go unnoticed, especially because he has a ton of siblings. He is explaining this to a shrink, the only who would could possibly understand this dilemma.

The ant colony is very interesting. Everyone has a role and everyone must work together. One scene involves a wrecking ball formed by ants. Z is one of the ants forming the cord of the wrecking ball, but when he lets go, the whole thing falls apart. A pretty neat representation of conformity. But it is taken too far. Even when the ants go dancing, they have to do the exact same dance synchronously. Z and Princess Bala (Sharon Stone) break the rules by doing their own dance.

The movie is essentially a look at individuality versus conformity. Like George Orwell's Animal Farm, Antz uses a story about creatures to really discuss something else. Now, there is a nice climax for the movie to lead up to. There are also other interesting characters, including bigger ants like Weaver (Sylvester Stallone), Barbatus (Danny Glover), Colonel Cutter (Christopher Walken), and General Mandible (Gene Hackman).

Antz was quite enjoyable for a one-and-a-half hour movie. For me, part of it is that I myself am a strong believer in being a unique individual without letting the absurdities of conformity take over. There is also the song "High Hopes" in this movie, which fits nicely into Antz. As Woody Allen's Z proves, even the smallest creature can make a big difference.

Anthony's Rating:

For more information about Antz, visit the Internet Movie Database.


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