Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania is an interesting open to Phase Five of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This movie is a lot to take in, bringing stunning visuals, humour and heartfelt performances to the table. Not only is it the first installment in the ‘Multiverse Saga', along with being the third movie in the ‘Ant-Man' franchise, but it also expands on what's to come in grand fashion.
It's safe to say this movie is solid at focusing on Scott Lang's world, and not on the larger, overarching Avengers plot. The film formally introduces the most important antagonist in the MCU since Thanos, Kang the Conqueror (Jonathan Majors). The movie does well to question the endless possibilities of what he will do to our beloved new characters throughout the upcoming projects. Most notably in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and Avengers: Secret Wars.
The Ant-Family is back!
We last saw the Ant-Family in Avengers: Endgame, and this film opens with our beloved Ant-dad, Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) and the Pym-Van Dyne family venturing into their new lives post-Blip, which is a common theme explored in Phase Four of the MCU.
Lang has adjusted to the life of a famous Avenger, while also publishing a very fitting memoir called “Look Out for the Little Guy.” Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lily) continues her missions with her family's technology company, making use of the Pym particles for humanitarian and scientific purposes. An older, mischievous, yet wise Cassie Lang (Kathryn Newton) has grown to be just like her father.
With the help of Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Janet Van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer), the trio accidentally get pulled into the wormhole known as the Quantum Realm. Not only does this lead them on a journey back home, but also having to face some challenges along the way. One of those challenges is dealing with the MCU's new big bad, Kang the Conqueror.
First impressions of Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania
While I do enjoy this film, I don't necessarily love it. The gorgeous visuals, world-building, and excellent performances all stand out. The storyline flows well, but there are a few plot points that were left unanswered. The ending of the film is quite abrupt, but the two post-credits scenes make up for it and are guaranteed to bring excitement about the future of the MCU.
Familiar cast, a fresh take
Many of the cast members give fresh, new performances. Our main lead, Paul Rudd, once again provides a hilarious and charming Scott Lang. Evangeline Lily, fresh with a new comic-accurate haircut, returns as the protective Hope Van Dyne, who is in search of a family reunion.
Kathryn Newton is the third actress to play Cassie Lang, and she does great to match her predecessors. She provides a youthful performance, full of all the energy we're accustomed to seeing from Cassie in the earlier films, but now truly grown up and making her mark as the latest young Marvel hero. (Hello, Marvel Studios. Where's the Young Avengers movie?)
It's lovely to see Michelle Pfeiffer and Michael Douglas return as Janet and Hank, however, Pfeiffer truly stands out. Her performance is so appealing, you just can't help but want for more. As expected, Jonathan Majors rules as Kang the Conqueror. His energy and volume in his performance demand your attention. When Majors shares the screen with Rudd and Pfeiffer, the chemistry is intense. The appearance of Kang's statue in the season one finale of Loki foreshadows his menacing form for this film. William Jackson Harper and Katy O'Brian are also great additions to the Marvel universe!
The visuals and music of Quantum Realm
The visuals are stunning and colourful, unique to what we've seen in the MCU already. Inside the Quantum Realm, you'll discover different realms that are eye-catching and jaw-dropping on a huge scale. CGI plays such a crucial part in this film, and it can be a bit jarring at times. However, The VFX department deserves so much credit for the work they put into Quantumania and all Marvel projects. The camera work by cinematographer Bill Pope also stands out.
The film's score, composed by Christophe Beck, ties everything together by bringing back recognizable notes from the previous Ant-Man films, as well as adding in some new electronic influences. The score adds a unique flavour to the story that rings off the screen.
Marvel's Star Wars?
Due to the sci-fi adventure elements of the film, it's obvious there are some comparisons to Star Wars. Director Peyton Reed helmed several episodes in the second season of The Mandalorian (most notably the show's season finale) and there are visible parallels in this movie. I wouldn't be surprised if he utilized his experience filming those episodes and adapted them into this, considering he did film them in between filming Quantumania. Some of the battles and scenes in the film can be replicated to the ones from the Star Wars franchise.
Final Thoughts on Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania
Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania may be an ensemble film, but it's no Avengers: Endgame. Yet, there is a major conflict that is destined to return in upcoming Marvel projects. Despite the sometimes shaky plot, the film begins a new phase with some humour, action, world-building visuals, and a brand-new villain to boast. Overall, it was entertaining to watch if you love weirdness, fun, and you're a fan of Marvel.
Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania playing exclusively in theatres February 17. Let us know your thoughts on the film on our socials.