Well that was ambitious!
Marvel’s latest superhero adventure is completely different than anything the comicbook empire has produced thus far. And surprise surprise, it works!
The story of a neurosurgeon turned mystical superhero, Doctor Strange is a quirky success thanks to the casting of Benedict Cumberbatch in the title role. Although his hero undergoes a fantastical journey, Cumberbatch keeps things grounded with a likable performance (not an easy feat when you’re playing an arrogant doctor). Even more impressive is Mads Mikkelson as the film’s duplicitous baddie – he’s menacing in all the right places, and his appearance is suitably terrifying thanks to some top-notch prosthetics. Sadly, the lovely and enormously talented Rachel McAdams is wasted in a thankless supporting girlfriend role. Whereas Tilda Swinton gets a pretty integral (and action-heavy) role, McAdams receives what amounts to three seconds of screen-time. Missed opportunity if you ask me!
From a technical perspective, the film is a weird and colorful journey filled with mind-bending imagery and captivating camerawork. Thanks to the source material, Doctor Strange is heavily reliant on CGI (computer generated imagery), even more so than your average Marvel movie. That’s all fine and well if you’re a fan of that sort of thing, but an onslaught of visual effects can be very draining. I often found myself wishing for a few scenes that didn’t require the use of green screens and superimposed backgrounds.
Nevertheless, Strange is a refreshing kind of superhero movie with an offbeat tone and an unexpected resolution (it’s not your typical blockbuster climax). Now let’s see how Marvel plans on integrating its newest hero with the rest of its Avengers in the upcoming Infinity War extravaganza. Fingers crossed!
A trippy and highly entertaining entry into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It’s not perfect, but it’s certainly worth watching!