Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

By Joanna Langfield

Ironic that, after all the millions of dollars spent on computer generated pizzaz, the best special effects come from two of the real life stars, serving up some real life acting.

Paul Rudd and team are back, in what began as a good natured addition to the Marvel catalogue. When it first started, Ant-Man was breezy and fun, a good stretch for the franchise to reach the more traditional family friendly crowd. This chapter, which feels somewhat like a place holder, introduces us to a new bad guy, Kang the Conquerer, who Janet met decades ago and, not knowing what a bad guy he was, saved his life. Now, after an experiment gone wrong, Scott and his family wind up in the Quantum Realm, trying to set things right and, of course, get home. They bump into all sorts of characters, some of whom are more developed than others, all of whom are terrified of said Kang. Rightfully so, we find out.

What is set up as the expected can-the-little-guy-save-the-day storyline takes a back seat to the ongoing set effects and myriad creatures. But none of it can compete with the eternally dazzling Michelle Pfeiffer (here proving a thing or two about fierce women of any age) and a downright glorious Jonathan Majors, who brings every bit of his superb theatrical training to what could be just another new enemy. The scariest moments are not from the seething serpents, fiery explosions or the usual will-they-or-won’t-they-live scenes. They’re when Majors talks. Quietly. Commanding our attention. And sending chills down our spines. It has been announced that Majors will star, as Kang, in two more Avengers movies and yes, you’ll want to stay for the post credit scenes to get a taste of what’s to come. If this ho-hummer serves as a vehicle to get us to those, I guess that’s not a bad thing. I actually laughed out loud though when Kang mutters something about not being able to tell one superhero from another. Maybe if each of the movies about them tried to work as stand alones, not just chapters in what seems to be an endless saga, he and I might feel differently.