When the first Ant-Man movie was playing in the cinema, I was quite impressed by its soundtrack composed by Christophe Beck. Music for superhero movies, set in the Marvel universe, is quite bombastic most of the time, and the music for Ant-Man does not fall in that category. The Ant-Man is not a run of the mill superhero: he is a thief, and the score reflects that, resulting in a melodic score with enjoyable and happy themes. I was delighted when I heard that Beck would return as the composer of the music for the sequel Ant-Man and The Wasp. This also means that he would have to take the enjoyable music of the first movie a step further, and I was very curious if he would be able to succeed.
One of the highlights of the prequel’s score is the main theme. It is a very lively theme, and that is mainly due tof the irregular pattern of the beats. Each measure is divided into four beats where the third beat is shorter and when you add a joyful melody and some drums into the mix, you have a perfect formula for a theme composed by Beck. Since this movie is a sequel, variations on this theme can occasionally be heard on this album, like in “World’s Greatest Grandma,” or “A Flock of Seagulls.” Since this movie is also about The Wasp, she needs an equally amazing theme. It can be found in the first track on the album called “It Ain’t Over Till the Wasp Lady Stings,” and I am happy to say that I really love this new theme. Like with Ant-Man’s theme, there is an irregularity in the beats of this theme: it has two beats where the second beat is slightly shorter than the first one, and this theme sounds even more massive, with fast drums, long lines and a lot of brass. There is a delicate and feminine part in the middle before the finale sets in. What I personally think is a great addition, is that the melody of her theme can also be used in a slower, more emotional way, as can be heard, for example, in the start of “Prologue,” or in “Revivification.” This version of the theme fits very well with what is happening in the movie.
The antagonist got a theme as well, as can be heard in “Ava’s Story.” Unlike the other two themes, this has a straightforward melody of notes that are all equal in length, resulting in a theme that is completely the opposite of the two other themes. Next to darkness and tension, a lot of emotion can be heard, adding more depth to the Ava character. The last theme I would like to mention is one that could also be heard in the previous movie: it was used when Hope’s mother sacrificed herself. Since it is a huge factor in this movie, it can be heard on this score as well, in the second half of ”A Little Nudge” for example. The rest of the score uses all of these themes and rhythms as the foundation for a melodic and, most of the time, a joyful underscore for what is happening in the movie. Beck also likes to integrate electronics in the score: “I Shrink, Therefore I am,” “World’s Greatest Grandma” and “Anthropodie” are perfect examples of that.
Personally, I think it is a great score. I have a weak spot for scores with fantastic themes that are integrated with all the background music, including the action sequences. The way The Wasp was introduced in the movie, together with the theme, was just perfect. The actions on screen with her elegantly fighting while her music was playing in the background was amazing. All the themes – old and new – reappear throughout the whole score, but none of them sound the same and are perfectly adapted to support the corresponding scene they were written for, creating an amazing melodic score that enhances the fun factor that this movie tries to achieve. I could not find a dull moment in the score, and the new theme for The Wasp will stay in my head for a long time.
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The highlights are in bold.
- It Ain’t Over Till the Wasp Lady Stings (2:34)
- Prologue (3:42)
- Ghost in the Machine (1:15)
- World’s Greatest Grandma (1:34)
- A Little Nudge (3:49)
- Feds (2:47)
- Ava’s Story (4:36)
- Wings & Blasters (1:55)
- Utmost Ghost (2:28)
- Tracker Swarm (1:27)
- Cautious as a Hurricane (2:47)
- Misdirection (2:38)
- Quantum Leap (2:53)
- I Shrink, Therefore I Am (1:57)
- Partners (1:52)
- Windshield Wipeout (1:37)
- Hot Wheels (1:38)
- Revivification (2:50)
- A Flock of Seagulls (1:07)
- San Francisco Giant (0:45)
- Ghost = Toast (2:54)
- Reduce Yourself (1:41)
- Quit Screwing Around (0:46)
- Anthropodie (4:16)
- Baba Yaga Lullaby (featuring David Dastmalchian) (0:25)
Total length: 56 minutes
Marvel Music Inc. (2018)