The imminent release of “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” on February 17 marks the beginning of the Phase 5 series of films that will comprise the next phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
As early reviews of the superhero sequel flood social media, the Monday night Los Angeles movie premiere is officially over.
In what has been billed as the most ambitious “Ant-Man” installment, Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly return as their eponymous superheroes. Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang and his family of receding scientists, including his now-adult daughter Cassie (Kathryn Newton), are sent to the dangerous Quantum Realm.
The heroes face difficulties in the new environment because of the rise of Kang the Conqueror (Jonathan Majors), who will have a significant part in future Marvel films, such as “Avengers: The Kang Dynasty” in 2025.
As part of the supporting cast for “Quantumania,” David Dastmalchian, Katy O’Brian, William Jackson Harper, and Bill Murray join Michelle Pfeiffer and Michael Douglas.
Following his tenure as director of “Ant-Man” and “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” Peyton Reed is back in the director’s chair. The director previously confessed to Entertainment Weekly that he was determined to lend “Quantumania” to his “Ant-Man” franchise the seriousness of an “Avengers”-size epic.
After watching the enormous Avengers film, “people felt like, Oh, these are fun little palette cleansers,” says Reed. “For the third one, I declared that I no longer wanted to serve as the palate cleanser. I want to star in the notable Avengers film.”
PHASE 5 HAS BEGUN! The new #AntMan movie is like a psychedelic rollercoaster full of frightening & hilarious oddities, plus one VERY menacing Kang. Big STAR WARS vibes meet the MCU at its freakiest & most inventive. MODOK is a riot, but Jonathan Majors conquers. Loved the ride! pic.twitter.com/gdJqHld3rT— Erik Davis (@ErikDavis) February 7, 2023
‘ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA’ was a BLAST and the best movie of the trilogy.— The Hollywood Handle (@hollywoodhandle) February 7, 2023
Crazy fight scenes and a PHENOMENAL villain, #Kang RULES, MODOK is exactly what I was expecting and I cannot wait what’s to come from this Phase 5. Be sure to stay for that post credit scene pic.twitter.com/6FZMvZd2Gr
Kang (played by Jonathan Majors), the Conqueror, a multiverse-spanning antagonist who got first introduced in the Disney+ series “Loki,” is currently the MCU character of the most significance. Jonathan Majors will serve as the main antagonist for the upcoming “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” and subsequent “Avengers” movies.
Brian Davids of The Hollywood Reporter called Majors “endlessly intriguing.”
Nora Dominick from Buzzfeed was a fan of Kang. There weren’t many negative comments made regarding Majors.
Jonathan Majors is a force in #AntManAndTheWaspQuantumania. He’s compelling, chilling, and already giving a top notch performance. I love the complexity he brings to Kang with literally a single look. MCU really won with this casting pic.twitter.com/4W8VCLGFBv— Nora Dominick (@noradominick) February 7, 2023
It’s crucial to remember as you read them, both the positive and negative as well as the in-between, that post-premiere tweets are typically immediate, visceral reactions, sometimes geared to get conversation. Trust them, but also exercise caution. The Quantumania evaluations will release the following week and offer more thoughtful, nuanced ideas.
But judging from these early reviews, it seems that Peyton Reed and Jeff Loveness were able to bring the warmth and humor of the first two Ant-Man movies into the enticing sci-fi adventure that audiences have grown to love as a result of Loki, Spider-Man: No Way Home, and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Phase 5 is off to a great start. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will follow in May.