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''Antz'' is a [[AllCGICartoon computer-animated film]] created by Creator/DreamWorks in 1998, the first feature film by Creator/DreamWorksAnimation and the third feature-length CGI movie ever released (the Brazilian ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cassiopeia_(film) Cassiopéia]]'' was the second feature-length CGI movie ever released while the American ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'' was the first). Most of the time, if someone mentions it, they're either [[DuelingMovies comparing it]] or [[AllAnimationIsDisney confusing it]] with Creator/{{Pixar}}'s ''WesternAnimation/ABugsLife'', and fair enough, both are computer-animated films about insects released in 1998. However, ''Antz'' is far DarkerAndEdgier than ''A Bug's Life'', as it was geared more towards adults and teenagers--who all [[AnimationAgeGhetto brought their children and younger siblings to see it.]]

The protagonist is a worker ant named Z, voiced by Creator/WoodyAllen. He is somewhat neurotic and maladjusted to life in an ant colony, where each individual is treated as an insignificant part of a greater society. One day, he hears a drunk veteran soldier ant rant about some place called Insectopia, where food is plentiful, there are no rules, and everyone lives in peace. Z and his soldier friend Weaver (voiced by Creator/SylvesterStallone) snicker at the old ant behind his back and think the idea of an "Insectopia" is hilarious.

Meanwhile, the lovely Princess Bala (voiced by Creator/SharonStone) is living in the palace, but finds it dull and does not happily anticipate her upcoming marriage to General Mandible (voiced by Creator/GeneHackman), or the idea of giving birth every ten seconds as Queen. She drags two ladies-in-waiting down to the workers' bar, where she dances with Z, who falls for her instantly. Z soon realizes however that he'll never see her again, so he convinces his friend Weaver to switch places with him for a day, just to see Princess Bala at a royal inspection, while Weaver gets to interact with some of the worker girls.

All does not go according to plan however, as it turns out the companies under royal inspection are immediately sent into an unexpected war with a nearby termite mound. Z is the only survivor through pure luck.

Meanwhile, Weaver, who has fallen for the career girl (and Z's work friend) Azteca (voiced by Creator/JenniferLopez), feels terrible about switching places, even though he too had no idea the army was about to go to war. However when he learns Z is the surviving ant and is now a war hero, he is ecstatic.

When Z meets the Queen (voiced by Creator/AnneBancroft) and Bala again, she recognises him as the worker from the bar. Mandible is furious that a worker danced with his fiancée, and the nervous Z hides behind Bala, but it is assumed that he is taking her hostage. She beats him off quite easily, but in doing so they fall down a garbage chute.

Z is forced by a series of his own mistakes to flee the colony with a troop of soldier ants in pursuit. Since he cannot go back, he decides to go out looking for Insectopia. Bala doesn't know how to get back home on her own and has little choice but to go with him.

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!!''Antz'' contains examples of the following tropes:

* {{Adorkable}}: Z
* AnAesop:
** Z runs away from the colony because he hates being an insignificant part of some huge thing. In the end of the film, he realizes the colony is able to survive because while individually insignificant, the ants are ''mighty'' when they all work together.
** He also accepts his role in life, because this time he ''chose'' it.
** Also "Think for yourself instead of frequently following orders."
* AlcoholHic: Chippie gets one.
* AlienGeometries: Over half the film does take place inside an ant colony, after all.
* AllPsychologyIsFreudian: PlayedForLaughs, given all the characters are ants, and have no interaction with their parents.
-->'''Z:''' When you're the middle child in a family of five million, you don't get any attention.
* AntWar: Mandible manipulates the hive into going to war with a colony of termites, who proceed to slaughter the ants, leaving Z as the sole survivor.
* ArrangedMarriage: Between Princess Bala and General Mandible.
* ArtisticLicenseBiology:
** In real life, female ants make up the vast majority of any given colony. Male ants exist solely to fertilize new queens, and usually die shortly afterwards.
** No, termites do NOT look like that. They are small and white, with large orange heads, and do not shoot acid, are not bigger than ants, and way more. Some species of termites do have a facial appendage called a "fontanellar gun" that sprays a noxious substance, though it's more of a toxic glue rather than acid.
* ArtisticLicenseGeography: All of the major skyscrapers of UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity are clumped together during TheReveal. At least the Statue of Liberty doesn't appear and the Great Lawn of Central Park is depicted accurately.
* ArtisticLicensePhysics:
** Water surface tension is depicted at the ant level (when Z is trapped inside a droplet), but later, it behaves on a human scale when the colony is flooded. The DVDCommentary acknowledges this, but states the change was for RuleOfCool and RuleOfDrama.
** During the scene where Z and Weaver discuss Z's offer to swap places for a day, the light source is a harsh, bright blue, yet the lighting is soft and warm. Again, acknowledged in the DVDCommentary.
** [[spoiler:General Mandible dies by falling on a branch, hitting it with a heavy thud.]] Anyone who knows the slightest about ants know that they have extremely light bodies and thus won't die from a fall.
* AttackAttackAttack: Standard soldier ant tactics, and said word-for-word by Z when trying to impress Bala and the Queen.
* AwesomeMcCoolname: Z, Weaver, Mandible, Bala, Cutter, Barbatus, Azteca... no-one here has a normal name. Weaver, Bala, Barbatus and Azteca are the names of [[PunnyName species of ants]]. Cutter probably refers to leafcutter ants, and Mandible's name in prior versions of the script was Formica (another species).
* BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor: At the beginning of the movie, Z says that he would've preferred to be a soldier. 20 minutes later, he gets his chance--[[WarIsHell and it's not pretty]].
* BeTheBall: In an early scene, a large numbers of ants join together into a massive wrecking ball. If you're lucky, you're somewhere in the middle of the ball; if you're Z, you're one of the ten or so forming the chain at the top who have to support the weight of the rest of the ants. One ant, who coordinates the action, literally yells "be the ball", making this movie a very tardy TropeNamer.
* BigApplesauce: The [[TheReveal big reveal]] at the end is that the entire film [[spoiler:took place around a water fountain in Central Park's Great Lawn.]] (Of course, the film stars Creator/WoodyAllen.)
* BigBad: General Mandible wishes to purge the colony of "weaker elements" (i.e. the Queen and all of the workers) and set up a new colony with his loyal soldiers and Bala as his Queen.
* BizarreAlienBiology: The ants have hands for feet. Four of them.
* BlueAndOrangeMorality: [[spoiler:The humans]] aren't "evil" per se, they're simply so ''huge'' they're unaware of their sheer power in comparison to an ant. The film does a very good job of illustrating this.
* {{Bowdlerize}}d:
** Whenever it is shown on TV, all the swear words are edited out. And there's quite a lot of petty swearing in the movie, so some of the dialogue is almost completely out of context. This is all to keep it in the AnimationAgeGhetto.
--->'''General Mandible:''' We ''will'' finish this tunnel, ''on schedule.'' Come [[labelnote:*]]hell or[[/labelnote]] high water.
** Later:
--->'''Mandible:''' [[labelnote:*]]Damn![[/labelnote]] [[LastSecondWordSwap ...good!]] [[labelnote:*]]Damn[[/labelnote]] good!
** The cover of the movie used to feature the World Trade Center quite prominently, until 2001.
** The television ad had Z saying "drinking from the ''caboose'' of another insect," not "anus."
** Also on the ad, Z says "Who the heck is that?" rather than "Who the hell is that?"
* BrooklynRage: Z and Colonel Cutter both sport New York accents, given that their respective actors Creator/WoodyAllen and Creator/ChristopherWalken are real-life New Yorkers.
* BugWar: An unusual example in that both sides are bugs, but the ants are very anthropomorphic, bordering on PettingZooPeople, wearing helmets and using tiny spears, while the termites are monstrous and lack any anthropomorphic features.
* CallToAdventure: The old veteran's rant about "Insectopia" at the bar.
* TheCallKnowsWhereYouLive: Z only actually goes looking for Insectopia after soldiers attempt to kill him for "kidnapping" Princess Bala.
* CarnivoreConfusion: The termites and praying mantis don't talk.
* CPRCleanPrettyReliable: Bala uses it on Z--he wakes right up after one breath and no chest compressions. Also a case of ArtisticLicenseBiology, since ants don't have lungs, and their heart is very different from a human's.
* DeadpanSnarker: {{Deconstructed|Trope}} with Z, who only snarks when he is nervous.
* DefrostingIceQueen: Bala, of course.
* DeniedFoodAsPunishment: The worker foreman doesn't like Azteca's attitude when she stands up to him on behalf of Weaver, so he denies her that day's rations.
* DescriptionCut: When Weaver fills in for Z and starts falling in love with Azteca, she coyly states she's glad Z's "takin' a breather." Cut to Z walking among the bodies of dead soldiers from the termite war.
* DisneyDeath: [[spoiler:After the climax of the movie, Z appears to have drowned. Bala manages to revive him with [[CPRCleanPrettyReliable CPR.]]]]
* DisneyVillainDeath: General Mandible as he falls to his death on an upturned root, killing him on impact. Subverted, as unlike most Disney villain deaths, they do show the aftermath (although it's from a fair distance)
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything:
** Heeeeeeeere's COMMUNISM!
** Chippy and Muffy are wasps both literally and [[WhiteAngloSaxonProtestant figuratively.]]
** Certain elements are very reflective of Aldous Huxley's ''Literature/BraveNewWorld'' and ''Literature/AtlasShrugged'' by Creator/AynRand.
* TheDragon: Cutter.
* DreamWorksFace: The dance sequence sees the birth of this trope. It's [[UnbuiltTrope relatively guileless and appropriate]] here, but one wonders why or how a facial expression inspired by Woody Allen's nervous grin became the marquis "look" of CGI critters.
* DrowningMySorrows: When Chip offers to help Z, he's crawling out of a bottle of Scotch. Amusingly, wasps do literally drown that way.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: Creator/DreamWorksAnimation would define itself as a creator of children's movies with plenty for adults to enjoy. This is definitely not a children's movie.
* EveryoneHasStandards: Towards the end of the film, Cutter begins to doubt General Mandible's plans and eventually pulls a HeelFaceTurn.
* FantasticRacism:
** Or rather, Fantastic Caste-ism between the soldier ants and the worker ants.
** Also touched upon between wasps and ants when the species meet in Insectopia.
* FatAndSkinny: Bala's two best friends.
* FromNobodyToNightmare: Z, as far as General Mandible is concerned.
* GaussianGirl: PlayedForLaughs during Z and Bala's romantic moment at Insectopia; Bala's face is blurred as Z goes in for a kiss, before he is rudely interrupted by the other insects around the fire.
* GenderIsNoObject: Not only are there male and female workers, but there are also male and female soldiers.
* GeneralRipper: General Mandible.
* GentleGiant: The wasps, Chip and Muffy (hey, they're giant from an ant's point of view!). Muffy more so than Chip, who mildly admonishes her for her charity towards "lowly" crawling insects like ants when they first met Z and Bala.
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar:
** Granted, it's geared towards adults and teens, but nevertheless, aside from swearing, there is also a scene where Z mentions that he wants to place Princess Bala in his wildest erotic fantasies. Ironically, they edited out sexual (the original line being "erotic sexual fantasies") to keep the PG rating despite "erotic" being an even dirtier use of the word. Also, Chip the wasp is clearly drunk at one point. [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zuPj2baypYk This video proves it all]].
** The scene where Azteca is briefly tortured off-screen comes across as disturbingly rapey. WordOfGod says they're actually grabbing her antennae.
** "I've been listening to you complaining. What are you bitching about?" from Weaver talking to Z at the bar.
** "I have a thing about drinking from the anus of another creature." -- Z at that same bar.
* GoodLipsEvilJaws: Subverted: while the large-jawed termites are monstrous and antagonistic, whereas the ants with lips are those the audience sympathizes with, but the true antagonist of the story, Mandible, is an ant who has lips (although his ''name'' suggests otherwise), and the termites aren't actually evil (the Queen mentions that they have been at peace with them for years, the battle in the film was all Mandible's doing).
* GoryDiscretionShot: Hoo-boy, ''averted''. You see ants melting during the war, getting torn apart in the background, and you see Muffy's splattered body after being flyswatted.
* GossipEvolution: While Z and Bala are away, the rumors of his standing up to General Mandible, kidnapping the princess, and killing soldiers with a look (actually the fault of a SolarPoweredMagnifyingGlass) spread like wildfire through the colony, inspiring the workers to revolt when they hear that it's possible to do something other than take orders.
* HeelFaceTurn: [[spoiler:Colonel Cutter]] right at the end.
* HiveCasteSystem: Soldiers are about twice the size of workers and have {{Heroic Build}}s.
* HumansAreCthulhu:
** A plastic-wrapped sandwich is "surrounded by SomeKindOfForceField", and an unseen sadistic human with a magnifying glass becomes a Flying Saucer with DeathRay (complete with ''Radio/TheWarOfTheWorlds'' sound effects) in a clear take-off of the "It's beautiful" scene in ''Film/IndependenceDay''. Also the human at the picnic, who is practically a living mountain compared to the insects (all we ever see are his feet and legs). A kid's sneaker is the size of a battleship (the scale according to WordOfGod). The directors stressed that the film didn't show how small the ants were, but how ''big'' their world was.
** Oddly averted when Z stares at Lincoln's face on a penny and exclaims, "Who the ''hell'' is that?!"
* IAmTheNoun: General Mandible's response to Cutter's HeelFaceTurn "for the good of the colony" is "[[LargeHam I AM the colony!]]" Which also qualifies as an IronicEcho, coming soon after Z says "we are the colony" when Mandible tries to claim that drowning the workers is a public good.
* IdiotBall: The scuffle that leads to Bala and Z being accidentally ejected from the colony together all happened because Bala decided to happily admit to both her mother, the Queen, and her fiancee, that she went to a bar and danced with a worker, the same one standing before them pretending to be a soldier. Poor Z tried shushing her, but to no avail.
* ImpaledWithExtremePrejudice:
** General Mandible, after his DisneyVillainDeath, falls straight onto a root.
** How Barbatus saves Z from a termite.
* InkSuitActor:
** Nearly everyone has some resemblance to their voice actor, of course turned into anthropomorphic ants. It is actually quite unnerving watching Weaver channel the expressions of Creator/SylvesterStallone. The irony is that, according to the DVDCommentary, the characters were all designed ''before'' the actors were cast, as was the decision to give Weaver "Stallone-esque" lips.
** Inverted in that Z originally was to wear Creator/WoodyAllen-style thick glasses. They decided against it.
* InsectGenderBender: Ants shouldn't have gender as we define it anyway, much less love interests.
* InsectQueen: The Queen, who is both royalty and the literal mother of the colony.
* ItsQuietTooQuiet: Right before the termites ambush the ant army.
* JustFollowingOrders:
** Two of General Mandible's loyalists can be heard following his plan because "those are the orders."
** Later, the Foreman
* KnightTemplar: General Mandible.
* LargeHam: General Mandible.
* LateArrivalSpoiler: The DVD case shows Z with New York City in the background.
* LeafBoat: Z and Bala cross the lake on a leaf in search of Insectopia. They spend the night using the leaf as a lean-to on the other side.
* LeaveTheTwoLovebirdsAlone: Bala and Z leave Chip and Muffy alone when they become distracted by their affections.
--> '''Z:''' Oh brother. I think I've lost my appetite.
* LittleGuyBigBuddy: Z and Weaver.
* LosingYourHead: [[spoiler:Barbatus, the soldier ant who takes Z under his wing. Z has a [[TearJerker sad]][=/=]disturbing moment with his head before he actually dies.]]
* LoveAtFirstSight: Z with Bala, Weaver with Azteca (and vice-versa?).
* MacGuffin: [[spoiler: Insectopia. It's central to Mandible's plans for a new colony.]]
* MajorInjuryUnderreaction: Barbatus. TruthInTelevision, however, in that an ant will live a while if reduced to just its head.
-->'''Barbatus's head:''' I can't feel my legs.
* MinionWithAnFInEvil: [[spoiler: Colonel Cutter]].
* MomentKiller:
** At the campfire in Insectopia, right as Z and Bala are about to kiss, one of the hippie bugs asks Z to get more firewood. As Z goes to get it, he asks them if they know why they're called "pests".
--->'''Z:''' Great, nothing like a little manual labor on the most romantic night of my life!
** Muffy is smacked with a flyswatter and killed while she and Chip are... uh... making Z lose his appetite.
** When Weaver is flirting with Azteca, the foreman comes along.
* TheMourningAfter: Chip does this after his wife Muffy is swatted. When Z decides to follow Cutter back to the Colony (after he picks up Bala), Chip offers to help him get there, coming out of a discarded bottle of scotch, drunk from grief.
* MouseWorld: Insectopia is a landscape of discarded food and other garbage on the ground next to a trash can.
* MyEyesAreUpHere: When Weaver first meets Azteca, he spends a bit too much time admiring her legs, causing her to invoke this trope.
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: General Mandible and [[AddedAlliterativeAppeal Colonel Cutter]].
* NeverSayDie: Averted, and how. Not to mention you see ants with acid boiling away their heads and bodies, poor Muffy squished, and so on.
-->'''Marching soldiers:''' The ants are marching two by two, hurrah, hurrah/We'll all be dead before we're through, hurrah, hurrah!
* NeverTrustATrailer: Despite what the trailer tells you, ''Antz'' is not a comedy flick for kids or a direct contender with ''WesternAnimation/ABugsLife''. It's completely different.
* NonActionSnarker: Z.
* OddFriendship: Z and Weaver, a worker and a soldier respectively. Well, they're actually brothers, since Weaver was born 2 seconds after Z.
* OfficialCouple: Z and Bala, Weaver and Azteca, Chip and Muffy.
* OhCrap:
** Z when he finds out that the regiment he snuck into is going off to battle termites.
** Z and the other worker ants get this when they realize that the water is about to trap the colony as part of Mandible's plan.
* OneLetterName: Guess who. No, the first twenty-five guesses don't count.
* PairTheSpares: Weaver and Azteca.
* PettingZooPeople: While the ants have six limbs, four of them are legs that move together, giving a somewhat bipedal appearance. Other talking insects are similar, while the termite antagonists are monstrous.
* PleaseWakeUp: [[spoiler:Bala, to Z, followed by a quick [[CPRCleanPrettyReliable mouth-to-mouth resuscitation]].]]
* PrecisionFStrike: While the f-bomb itself is never dropped, characters do swear in this movie; the first time caught many viewers off-guard.
* ProductPlacement: Pepsi, Mountain Dew, and Reebok make appearances, albeit believable and unobtrusive ones.
* PunchClockVillain: Colonel Cutter. Probably a decent guy, if he wasn't taking orders from the BigBad. In an early script, Cutter was going to have a lady friend among the palace workers, who would double as Bala's best (and only) friend, and probably have replaced the two serving girls. But this would have taken attention away from the main romances, which were Z and Bala, and Weaver and Azteca.
* ThePurge: Mandible's EvilPlan is to wipe out all the workers and the queen, so he could make a new colony filled with soldiers. Wiping out the soldiers loyal to the queen in a pointless war with termites is the first step.
* RebelliousPrincess: Bala.
* RedHerring: The picnic is ''not'' Insectopia.
* RefusalOfTheCall: At first, Z laughs when he hears the legend of Insectopia.
* TheRevolutionWillNotBeVilified: Following Z's ([[ShroudedInMyth exaggerated]]) example, the workers stage a strike and peaceful protest, which is quickly subdued by Mandible using nothing more than a RousingSpeech.
* RichBitch: Princess Bala [[spoiler:[[CharacterDevelopment for a while]].]]
* SaveThePrincess: From the [[NiceJobBreakingItHero mess you got her into]], and later from [[BigBad General Mandible]].
* SickeninglySweethearts: The wasps, Chip and Muffy. From mild bantering to "Cuddly Widdles" and "my big, strong pheromone factory".
* SlidingScaleOfLibertarianismAndAuthoritarianism: this film lies somewhere in the middle. [[spoiler:Closer to the authoritarian end--Insectopia exists only because the ant colony allows it, but cannot resist General Mandible.]]
* SolarPoweredMagnifyingGlass: A giant magnifying glass fries one of the soldier ants sent to arrest Z and Bala.
* SomeKindOfForceField: [[TropeNamer Word-for-word]], even, when Z and Bala encounter a picnic lunch--covered in Saran Wrap.
* SpoilerCover: The cover shows New York's skyscrapers in the background. The film's location is not revealed until the end, which reveals that the grand adventure took place in a tiny patch in Central Park.
* {{Squick}}: {{Invoked|Trope}} and {{Discussed|Trope}} by Z when Weaver asks him if he's going to drink his Aphid Beer.
-->'''Z:''' Call me crazy, but I have a thing about drinking from the anus of another creature.
* StockSoundEffects: The magnifying glass is accompanied by the original UFO sound from ''Radio/TheWarOfTheWorlds''.
* SuspiciouslyAproposMusic: Music/DorisDay belting out "High Hopes" at the end.
* TalkToTheFist:
** When Cutter arrives in Insectopia, he is immediately greeted by a hippie bug.
---> '''Hippie:''' Hey, man, welcome to Insec-- ''['''WHACK!'''; groan]'' --topia.
** Weaver's interrogation scene qualifies as well, which leads to a funny line from the DVDCommentary:
--->'''Eric Darnell:''' Ooh, look out, Weaver! ''['''WHACK!''']''
* ThatsNoMoon: That's a mantis.
* TooDumbToLive: Z stops the workers from digging because they're near water. But the worker foreman wants them to continue digging because those are orders.
-->'''Z:''' What if someone told you to jump off a bridge? I mean--\\
''[Foreman puts hand to chin and contemplates]''\\
'''Z:''' Ah, geez, I'm talkin' to the wrong guy here!
* TookALevelInBadass: Z during the Sneaker scene. According to WordOfGod, Z had been a NeutralMale too much of the film and had to become more heroic.
* TortureAlwaysWorks: While beating up tough ant Creator/SylvesterStallone doesn't work, bring in his new girlfriend Azteca and start implying pain on her part and he sings like a bird.
* {{Ubermensch}}: [[spoiler:Z gradually [[CharacterDevelopment develops]] into something like this]].
* UptownGirl: The lowly worker ant pretends to be a soldier to impress a princess.
* UriahGambit: The termite war is a large-scale gambit; General Mandible sends all of the soldiers who are more loyal to the Queen than himself, and only Z survives.
* UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans: General Mandible thinks so.
* VillainousBreakdown:
-->'''Cutter:''' ''This'' is for the good of the colony. ''(extends hand to Z)''
-->'''General Mandible:''' ''YOU USELESS, UNGRATEFUL MAGGOT! '''I AM THE COLONY!!!'''''
* VillainWithGoodPublicity: General Mandible is excellent at {{Rousing Speech}}es that inflate his reputation at the cost of his foes.
* VisualPun: Chip and Muffy, the Yellowjackets, are portrayed like stereotypical upper-class [[WhiteAngloSaxonProtestant WASPs.]]
* WarIsHell: Z finds his first taste of battle unpleasant, to say the least. The aftermath, complete with SceneryGorn, is arguably worse.
* YouHaveFailedMe: The Queen sees General Mandible as this for failing to bring back her daughter. Of course, she didn't really like him that much to begin with despite seeing him as a suitable mate for her daughter.
* YouOweMe: Subverted when Z is trying to get Weaver to agree to switch places with him.
-->'''Z:''' Please, Weaver, please. Think of all the things I've done for you.
-->'''Weaver:''' Hmm... Can't think of any.
-->'''Z:''' Okay, well, think of all the things that I'm ''gonna'' do for you!
* YoureInsane: Said by Bala to General Mandible after she learns the true purpose of the Mega Tunnel.
-->'''Princess Bala:''' You're crazy!\\
'''General Mandible:''' ''[frowns, then smiles and replies calmly with an AudibleGleam]'' I believe history will see things differently.
* ZergRush: Soldier ant tactics amount to overwhelming the enemy with superior numbers. (Ants really do fight like this, minus the tiny spears obviously.)
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