|“||Sacrifice. To some, it is just a word. To others, it is a code. A soldier knows that the life of an individual ant doesn't matter. What matters is the Colony. He's willing to live for the Colony. To fight for the Colony. To die for the Colony. At 0800 hours, we received word that the Termite enemy has mobilized. We have no choice but to launch a preemptive strike. You are the Queen's finest. I know you will all do your duty. I am proud to send you into battle. Dismissed.||„|
|~ General Mandible intentionally sending the Queen's troops on a suicide mission to attack the termites.|
|“||YOU USELESS, UNGRATEFUL MAGGOT! I AM THE COLONY!||„|
|~ General Mandible's very hypocritical last words.|
General Mandible (simply known as Mandible) is the main antagonist of DreamWorks's 1st full-length animated feature film, Antz. He is the leader of the queen's army, Cutter's former boss and Princess Bala's former fiancé.
He was voiced by Gene Hackman who also played Lex Luthor.
General Mandible is an ant who serves as the leader of the Queen's army alongside with his accomplice, Colonel Cutter. He is a war-hungry insect with little regard for the colony as a whole (especially the army's battle against the Termites and their Queen), which becomes evident when he ultimately betrays every ant, including the Queen but excluding his own army, by flooding the anthill in an attempt to "wash away the past".
He intends to marry Princess Bala, making her his queen and the mother of thousands of larval children and make a strong colony with workers, but she calls off the wedding and rejects him after she learns of his plans, causing Mandible to lock her in his office to stop her from interfering in his plan and also to protect her from being drowned.
After successfully flooding the anthill, the would-be-dictator's scheme is foiled when Z, Princess Bala and the other ants form a ladder with their own bodies to escape from the rising waters. Mandible attempts to kill Z, but Cutter, finally having enough of Mandible's evil ways, turns against him, and instead tries to help Z, stating that is what's truly "For the good of the colony". Mandible, enraged, snaps and screams "YOU USELESS, UNGRATEFUL MAGGOT! I AM THE COLONY!" Mandible charges at Cutter but Z pushes Cutter out of the way, and he and Mandible fall into the flooded anthill.
While Cutter saves Z, Mandible ends up smashing against an upturned root, killing him on impact.
Mandible is a proud ant general, willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish his goals, he holds a strong belief that the strong should survive and the weak element should be washed away, meaning killed. Mandible was ruthless, deluded, cruel, vicious, brutal and overall insane in nature.
Despite this he was still a charismatic leader, able to convince the rest of the colony that Z was an enemy. Mandible appears a definite physical match but he prefers to manipulate a situation to his advantage and tricked the most loyal soldiers into attacking a termite colony which was a definite suicide mission.
Mandible was definitely xenophobic and possessed an unreasonable and indescribable hatred of the worker class of the ants; he even believes that their deaths would benefit the colony. Mandible knows that the life of an individual ant didn't matter, just an insignificant sacrifice. He also had an extremely high self-importance, describing himself as the colony before attacking his former second in command, Cutter. Mandible is also xenophobic towards the termites.
- "Workers. They are weak. They lack discipline. They lack commitment."
- "But in spite of your limitations, you are going to finish this tunnel on schedule. Come hell or high water."
- "DAMN!! Good. Damn good. I'll handle this."
- "Z doesn't give a DAMN about us!"
- It is possible that the Termite Queen influenced the dark aspects of Mandible.
- Mandible is the only DreamWorks villain to use profanity, because of Antz' adults only style.
- General Mandible is somewhat similar to Hopper from Disney/Pixar's A Bug's Life, another computer-animated film about ants that both came out in 1998. Both of them were brutal insect leaders who took advantage of other insects.
- General Mandible symbolizes Adolf Hitler due to a desire to commit genocide in the name of a "perfect" society run by a superior kind of individual (for Hitler the Ubermensch, for Mandible the Soldier Ant).
- General Mandible is considered to be one of Dreamworks' most evil villains, along with Drago Bludvist.
- In the early drafts of Antz, Mandible was originally going to be a major (with an ant named Formica serving as General and Bala's fiancé) and the one who brought Bala back to the colony. Unlike Mandible, who locks Bala in his office to prevent her from being drowned, Formica would have left Bala to die along with the Queen and the workers, claiming that there are plenty more princesses were she came from.
- Mandible is similar to Judge Claude Frollo from Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame; they are psychotic xenophobes who plan to destroy those they deem unworthy.