By Emily Hanson || Arts and Leisure Editor
As an avid Marvel fan, I’m hesitant to admit that within the most recent phase—NOT including the love of my life, Spider-Man: No Way Home, of course—I’ve been pretty disappointed by the shows and movies Marvel has been releasing. It’s not a constant problem in one area; I’ve had my issues with writing, CGI, and plots alike. So, I will say I was rather nervous when I headed to see Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania on opening night. But I am a movie lover at heart, so I came in with an open mind, and I’m thrilled that I did.
Quantumania is the third installment of the Ant-Man series, now a trilogy, which has spanned nearly eight years, with the first released in 2015. The original film formulates a certain style of humor that has become significant to Ant-Man, who is an ex-convict named Scott Lang, played by Paul Rudd. Ever since the first Ant-Man film, Scott has had a place in the MCU using subatomic particles that allow him to grow and shrink at will, hence the name.
In this new adventure, Ant-Man is sucked into the “Quantum Realm,” a subatomic universe where lots of secrets lie. He is joined by his daughter Cassie (Kathryn Newton), “The Wasp” Hope Pym (Evangeline Lilly), and her scientist parents, Hank Pym and Janet van Dyne (Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer). The gang must find a way to return home, but run into lots of unexpected challenges and enemies in a new, unfamiliar universe. The film introduces viewers to many non-human species, some of which are reminiscent of alien life, notably that of the Star Wars franchise. These characters are so interesting, and the writing is well-balanced. The film succeeds in the massive endeavor of explaining all the new concepts and developing the plotline that we came for. I also think that this style of humor, specific to the Ant-Man movies, is consistent and ever-present. Lately, in my opinion, Marvel movies have been lacking in regard to their humor and their balance, but they finally got this one right. The jokes landed, and my theater certainly laughed at all the right times.
As of now, Quantumania holds a 47% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. I don’t normally accredit reviews of movies from critics, but I can’t tell you how shocked I am by the public reaction to this movie. The opinions are so split down the middle, but those who dislike it really dislike it. And this time, I don’t know exactly why. Many of Marvel’s latest projects (including She-Hulk, Thor: Love and Thunder, and Eternals) have also been sitting at low scores, and for better reasons. Quantumania does not deserve to be so low on that list. Complaints are coming from all directions, but if you do want to watch a recent Marvel movie, I’d say Quantumania is a really safe bet. Just make sure you catch up on the previous installments first.
Sophomore Emily Hanson is the Arts and Leisure Editor. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org.