Marvel Cinematic Universe – Phase Five
SECRET INVASION (June 21, 2023
Director: Ali Selim
Starring: Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Olivia Colman, Kingsley Ben-Adir, Emilia Clarke, Martin Freeman, Don Cheadle
Samuel L. Jackson has been playing Nick Fury in a supporting role since the early days of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Now he’s leading the new series Secret Invasion for Disney+. The series kicks off with Martin Freeman’s Agent Ross receiving a warning that the alien species The Skrulls are behind a recent chain of attacks. MCU fans may remember that the Skrulls were introduced in Captain Marvel which was set in the 90s, but Secret Invasion takes place in modern day. The Skrulls are a group of shapeshifters who can transform into a human body and sneak around without any warning. That’s part of the danger as it begs the question of who can be trusted. Nick Fury is brought back in when Skrull General Talos (Mendelsohn) and the always reliable Maria Hill (Smulders) warn him about the potential dangers of a Skrull Invasion.
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3 (May 5, 2023)
Writer/Director: James Gunn
Starring: Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Chukwudi Iwuji, Will Poulter, Sean Gunn, Elizabeth Debicki
James Gunn changed the tone of the Marvel Cinematic Universe when he introduced audiences to the scrappy, but funny Guardians of the Galaxy. He’s now set out to say goodbye with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. The Guardians of the Galaxy have been through a lot at this point with the blip leaving a lasting impression. They’re all living on their headquarters called Knowhere with Chris Pratt’s Peter Quill treating his depression by being a drunken mess. Zoe Saldana’s Gamora is now a variant off in another sector of the universe no longer the friend and partner she once was. Their world is rocked again when Adam Warlock (Poulter) comes soaring into Knowhere causing destruction and chaos. He’s an unstoppable force targeting the Guardians leaving Rocket clinging to life. The Guardians set out to save Rocket (Cooper), which is easier said than done after learning his origin story and the connection he has to the High Evolutionary who is playing god in his attempt to create a utopia.
ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA (February 14, 2023)
Director: Peyton Reed
Starring: Paul Rudd, Jonathan Majors, Evangeline Lilly, Michelle Pfeiffer, Kathryn Newton, Michael Douglas, William Jackson Harper
If you don’t already know Jonathan Majors from Lovecraft Country or Da 5 Bloods. Add him to your list of top Hollywood talent on the verge of superstardom. Before we see him in Creed III, he squares off against Ant-Man in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. We first saw Majors as Kang the Conqueror in the final episode of Loki Season 1. He’s been teased as the next massive Marvel villain rivaling Thanos. In Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, we learn he’s been stuck in the Quantum realm with Michelle Pfeiffer’s character, Janet Van Dyne. To recap, the Quantum realm is a subatomic universe that is full of mystery and power. Back on normal-sized Earth, Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang would like a break from being an Avenger. He’s written a memoir but would rather just spend time being dad to his daughter, Cassie, (Newton). She’s following in the family footsteps by studying Quantum and giving herself powers. That is until her new device sucks herself, Scott, Janet, Hope, and Hank into the Quantum realm. It’s a world unlike anything they would have expected but full of danger once they learn Kang the Conqueror is after Scott and Cassie.