Quantumania Shrinks Expectations

Quantumania Shrinks Expectations

Shane Byron, Staff Reporter

Ant-Man returns? Kang The Conqueror? M.O.D.O.K? The second worst Marvel Cinematic Universe movie? Ant-Man and the Wasp Quantumania directed by Peyton Reed is the 31st movie to be included in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Reed’s first MCU project was released on February 17, 2023 making $106.1 million on opening weekend making it the 14th biggest opening weekend for the MCU. This movie follows Scott Lang and his family which was heavily affected positively after their heroic efforts in Avengers: Endgame but barely focuses on this and instead is basically a Kang the Conqueror introduction film.

Kang is a highly respected and loved villain from Marvel Comics dating back to 1963 and was announced to be the next “Big Bad” in the MCU which fans were extremely excited for. He was first introduced in live action in the TV series Loki being played by Jonathan Majors and when it was announced he would be the main villain of Quantumania fans were rejoiced. Because of this, it was a highly anticipated film that has been received very poorly. Quantumania is currently rated at 48% on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic which makes it the second worst project in the MCU according to critics.
A reason for this movie underperforming that is floating around the internet, was because of the story being “messy” while the movie has no stakes when one of the most menacing villains in Marvel’s catalog is headlining the film. This reviewer agrees with these criticisms and adds on saying that the ending was the worst out of any MCU project. How the inclusion of some characters were useless just like the attempt at this film having stakes. Further exploring these points, the inclusion of characters such as M.O.D.O.K and Bill Murray’s character were depressing attempts at a money grab with both characters being poorly written with no additions to the story.

On the other hand, this movie is extremely important for the future of the MCU and is a must watch for followers of the cinematic universe and is also an entertaining watch for the average viewer to enjoy if you aren’t looking for the perfect movie. And of course the best parts of this movie are the performances of Jonathan Majors as Kang and Paul Rudd as Ant-Man. They both have great dynamics in every interaction with every character and each other which gives hope for the recent underwhelming MCU. Majors as Kang is the future of Marvel and proves it in this film while Rudd continues to be the perfect casting for the loveable Scott Lang.

Rocklin High School (RHS) sophomore Reegan Chima saw the movie in the theater and shared, “The logistics of it (the film) don’t make sense” which agrees what many viewers on the internet and critics have to say. Reegan also shared with this reviewer on RHS’ journalism podcast, Live From M5, sharing “…what they (Marvel Studios) need to fix… their story tropes are getting a little stale” relating back to The Flash Issue 2 Volume 30, agreeing that the “Marvel Fatigue” is hitting hard.

In all, this reviewer believes that this movie underperformed compared to other MCU projects which differs from peers but agrees with other reviewers to a certain extent. I give Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania a disappointing 2 out of 5 stars.