I’m not sure how many Marvel movie and T.V. show reviews I’ve written, but you will never catch me complaining about it. My job is cool sometimes. Although, I am writing this when I would rather be watching the new Critical Role episode airing right now on Twitch. But I have a deadline, and I’m technically writing this 24 hours past that deadline. (It was bad planning on my part. The movie was released a day later than I thought, but I didn’t want to miss jumping on the opening weekend Marvel movie bandwagon.) I guess if I have to miss the new C.R. episode, writing about the best Ant-Man movie isn’t a bad trade-off.
Are Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania the greatest Marvel movie ever created? No, but it was fun. It felt very Star Wars-y but a little more gooey and slimy. (Drink the slime! Drink the slime!) Quantumania is the best Ant-Man movie by far. The first two felt like they were trying to be too much like the original Iron Man movies mixed with a weird PG-13 mix of Deadpool and Dad jokes. I do not hate the first two movies, but they aren’t very memorable and leagues better than Thor’s first two movies. Although between Ant-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Thor, Marvel is not shying away from the weird galaxy and otherworldly creature designs. There was a talking broccoli man in this new movie, and I didn’t even bat an eye.
My Biggest Gripe With The Marvel Cinematic Universe
The passage of time never feels concrete. The snap happened, but the main heroes all still looked the same. Nobody ages in these movies, and it makes keeping track of time skips harder than it should be. And Ant-Man deals with the time skip better than any other franchise in the MCU. The first time we were introduced to Cassie, Scott Lang’s daughter, she was six, but in the newest installment, she is 18. And while different people play the two aged versions of Cassie, it helps solidify the passage of time in the MCU for the otherwise immortal-looking Avengers. (R.D.J. definitely had more gray in his hair toward the end, but Chris Hemsworth hasn’t aged a day.)
While M.O.D.O.K. was a funny character and a cool callback to the first bad guy Scott Lang fought as Ant-Man, M.O.D.O.K. is the culmination of Marvel relying too much on CGI. Nothing in this movie felt real. It felt like I was watching a video game playthrough more than a movie. Practical effects ground a movie. The Lord of the Rings and Star Wars feel grounded. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania feels like the leveled-up version of Spy Kids 3D. I understand that practical effects take time and are a real hassle for a lot of movies in a time crunch, but please start adding at least a few more into effects.
M.O.D.O.K. is the best example of this weird CGI crutch that’s going on in movies. M.O.D.O.K.’s facial CGI effect looks no different than George Lopez’s Mr. Electric from Sharkboy and Lavagirl. M.O.D.O.K. looked like they took a picture of Corey Stoll, pasted it into Microsoft Paint, and dragged out the sides until it fit into their M.O.D.O.K. model. Other than that, it was a pretty fun movie to watch.
I love Kang the Conqueror. He’s a top-five Marvel villain for me. He’s next to Doctor Doom, Magneto, Kingpin, and Norman Osborn. I’m so excited to see what they do with Kang and the multiverses. My brain hurts a little trying to keep track of who is from what universe and why they are on the screen, but I can learn all the names in Game of Thrones, The Cosmere, and Lord of the Rings. I can keep track of the MCU. And while I’m excited about Marvel’s new big bad guy after Thanos, I’m most excited about the Young Avengers roster they keep slowly building up. Cassie Lang (Stature), Kate Bishop (Hawkeye), Wanda’s two boys, Tommy and Billy (Wiccan and Speed), Elijah Bradley (Patriot), America Chavez (Ms. America), Kid Loki, Riri Williams (Iron Heart), and Kamala Khan (Ms. Marvel) all have my heart.
It’s sort of like a passing of the baton. They’re the Devin Booker and Jason Tatums of the MCU taking over the mantle of heroes from the O.G.s before them. I can’t wait to see what they do and what stories Marvel tells through them.
3 out 5 mechanized genius ants