The story involves Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), a thief released from prison for good behavior, discovering a shrinking suit invented by scientist Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas). Pym, having seen Scott's skills as not only a master thief but also as an engineer, recruits Scott on a mission to steal an invention of Hank's apprentice, Darren Cross (Corey Stoll), that could threaten the world if sold to the wrong hands. Meanwhile, Scott wants to be present in the lives of his daughter and ex-wife, who are trying to stay afloat.
Though the story has a very basic framework of a hero being trained by a wise mentor to defeat the villain, it's everything else that makes the formula so watchable in Ant-Man. The action, for example, gives this film a unique feel from the other Marvel movies. Like Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (Johnston 1989) and its sequels this film's main concept involves shrinking. However, Ant-Man is the first shrinking film to incorporate shrinking into its action. Scott can use his small size to hide from his foes and then use his strength, which is even stronger in his small form, to knock them on their backs or grow back to normal size to give them a swift uppercut as he grows back.