One of the most anticipated superhero films is finally upon us! Doctor Strange!
From the time Marvel made the official announcement that they would be making a Doctor Strange movie and that Benedict Cumberbatch would be cast as the Sorcerer Supreme, I eagerly waited for this day to come. During the long wait, month after month I made do with whatever behind-the-scene photos and teasers I would chance upon and find on the internet.
I had the awesome opportunity to attend the advanced screening of Doctor Strange just a couple of days ago at the IMAX Theatre at SM Mall of Asia. My joy and excitement couldn’t be contained as I counted down the days.
I’ve always been a comic geek. I grew up collecting comic books, reading them over and over again and escaping into my own fantasy. This is probably the reason why I’m part of the demographic that’s sincerely hoping for a close-to-faithful retelling of Doctor Strange’s origin story. Thankfully, Marvel did not disappoint.
For those who aren’t too keen on Dr. Stephen Strange’s story, allow me to give you a brief understanding and appreciation of this incredible character who is sure to become a vital part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe — especially with Thanos, the Avengers and the impending Infinity Wars just around the corner.
Who is Doctor Strange?
Dr. Stephen Strange is widely regarded as the world’s top neurosurgeon whose life suddenly changes after a devastating and career-ending car accident robs him of the use of his hands. With all hope from traditional medicine seemingly lost, he sets out on a journey and ultimately turns to a mysterious enclave for healing. Here he encounters the Ancient One who eventually becomes Strange’s mentor in the mystic arts.
Doctor Strange is unlike any Marvel movie you’ve seen before
Without giving away too much of the movie, here are my thoughts on Doctor Strange and why I think this film is a great (and much needed addition) to the MCU.
Doctor Strange is a very timely movie in the sense that it finally expands the Marvel Cinematic Universe and touches on a vital aspect of this intertwined storyline that has not been established up until now — the mind-expanding tenets of Eastern mysticism.
I particularly love the film’s pacing. The story’s flow establishes just enough of Dr. Stephen Strange’s old life for us to get a good grasp of who he is and what makes him tick. It doesn’t dwell too long on it and dives straight into his mystical journey and transformation. And boy, what a trippy journey it is — not just for the character but for viewers as well.
But as much as the film takes you on a mind-trip, mixed with tons of dizzying visual effects and exhilarating action sequences, Doctor Strange is, in itself, an awesome origin story. Dr. Stephen Strange’s arrogant, wise-cracking and self-centered personality and his journey towards humility is just one of the things you will enjoy in this movie.
Apart from that, it’s really cool how the film also brings tons of humor, injected onto scenes at just the right moment… yes, even during intense fight scenes and turning points. Cumberbatch’s natural wit and comical timing are perfectly utilized and never overdone.
Benedict Cumberbatch (Doctor Strange) and Tilda Swinton (the Ancient One) both stand out with top-notch acting, making it truly stand out among other blockbuster movies.
Doctor Strange is a must-see movie even for non-Marvel fans
Moviegoers who have not been immersed in the Marvel Cinematic Universe up until now will still enjoy watching Doctor Strange. It is, in my opinion, the perfect entry point for those wanting to get in on all the Marvel fun.
While the film does make a very slight reference to Captain America: Civil War early on in the film (which you won’t notice if you don’t pay really close attention) and a couple of Avengers talk within the story, the movie most definitely stands on its own.
So, whether you’re a superhero fan or not, Doctor Strange is most definitely a film to watch. It has all the elements that make for a great movie — spectacular visuals, an amazing musical score, a great origin story and, of course, incredible acting. And boy, is it such a joy to watch on the BIG screen!
Marvel fans don’t need any convincing, really. But for those who have been on the fence, thinking if Doctor Strange is worth your time and money, wonder no more. The answer to that is a resounding YES.
In my opinion, Doctor Strange is unlike any Marvel movie that has come before it in terms of the kind of visual candy it offers, and offers in great abundance.
But while the movie may be fictional, Doctor Strange, in its very core, is a story of redemption that is very much real and relatable. There is a whole lot of truth in how the movie inspires people to seek hope and persevere even when everything seems to be caving in on us.
Just like how the multi-dimensional world is revealed to a lost and awestruck Stephen Strange, the film similarly unravels and speaks to the moviegoer on so many levels.
That in itself, even without the visual spectacle that is sure to leave you in total amazement, is already worth your time and hard-earned money.
Marvel’s newest offering is one mind-blowing trip that you’re not ever gonna want to miss.
For all things Doctor Strange here in the Philippines, search and follow the hashtags: #OpenYourMind #DoctorStrangePH
Oh! By the way… make sure to stay for the mid-credits AND post-credits scenes!
Doctor Strange stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Tilda Swinton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mads Mikkelsen, Benedict Wong, Rachel McAdams, and is now currently out in theaters.