Doctor Strange: Film Review 

strange

I am usually ridiculously hyped for Marvel movies but I never was for Doctor Strange and I don’t know why. Maybe cos it’s so different to the others. I was hoping the movie itself would surpass my expectations but it didn’t. It was good, I liked it but I didn’t come out thinking ‘this is awesome’ like the others.

Benedict Cumberbatch plays high-flying, glory-seeking neurosurgeon Stephen Strange with Tony Stark ego vibes. Following a near fatal car accident, he loses full use of his hands so cannot work again. Upon a recommendation, he heads to Kathmandu, Nepal and finds the The Ancient One (Tilda Swinton) with the help of Mordo (Chiwetel Ejiofor). He hopes she’ll simply heal this hands but she instead teaches him about the multiverse, how to move between dimensions, conjure portals and weapons with his mind and hands and control his astral self. However, he has a fight on his hands with The Ancient One’s former student Kaecilius (Mads Mikkelsen), who practices the dark arts in return for immortality.

The plot was confusing as hell to me – just trying to write that was difficult. I tried so hard to understand the world and how they move through it. During fight sequences, it looked amazing and very different to usual superhero battles but I couldn’t really tell you what was happening and what it meant. I sort of let it wash over me after a while.

The CGI was insanely good and it looked very cool in an Inception-style way that reminded me of a kaleidoscope. I loved when time is reversed in Hong Kong – the CGI there is freaking amazing. Cumberbatch looked like Strange from the comics and was good enough (although his US accent was OTT) and I liked Swinton and Rachel McAdams as the love interest Christine Palmer. The cape which has a mind of its own was probably my favourite thing in the entire film – Strange’s cape stopping him from running one way was the best thing.

Usually Marvel owns when it comes to quips and pop culture references, but the success rate here wasn’t as high. I laughed out loud a lot but there were also a few jokes that fell flat and left me feeling a bit awkward. I was also disappointed by the resolution or what should have been the big bad final battle in regular Marvel movies. I know this is different but end battles are supposed to be better than ones earlier in the film and this wasn’t really a battle at all. It makes you think, ‘oh is that it?’, there’s no payoff or real sense of satisfaction at the end.

This is funny, looks amazing and is well cast but I had trouble following the story, the action, and some laughs failed to land. It serves as a good introduction to the world and the character. Remember to stick around for the credits.

In cinemas now 

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