Based on a popular childrens book by John Nickle, The Ant Bully is a journey into the already penetrated world of ants and everything entomological. Its the first of three big budget CGI animated features that we will be expecting in the short span of two months. Although boasting the most impressive roster of star voice talents, youll still be hard pressed to distinguish this from the rest. Ultimately, it has a been-there-done-that vibe that permeates the relatively dated animation, which in terms of story and animations has nothing of notable value to add to the already congested library of CGI films.
Perhaps its greatest and unintentional promotion would be the ludicrous accusations of political subtext. It has drawn some criticisms of subtly infusing communist rhetoric in its prevailing theme of communal strength in numbers and conformity for the greater good, but thats just hogwash. If anything, its theme and certain sequences insinuate Buddhist philosophies more than politics.
After one too many atomic wedgies by the local bully, Lucas a.k.a. Peanut (Zach Tyler) takes out his frustrations on the anthill and insects in his lawn. This cycle of cruelty earns him the title of Peanut the Destroyer, amongst the ant colony that remarkably learnt how to speak English, has a stable government and can perform magic. In fact, to this highly advanced and sophisticated species, humans are considered the primitive philistines. Local ant wizard, Zoc (Nicholas Cage) gets his revenge by creating a potion to shrink Lucas into the size of an ant. As Lucas is brought to face justice, the Ant Queen (an ethereally voiced, Meryl Streep) decrees that he be taught the life of an ant before returning him home because it takes a village to raise a kid and it apparently also takes a village to educate misguided little boys.................