Doctor Strange

"Excellent"

Doctor Strange Review


As Guardians of the Galaxy did two years ago, this action romp comes at the Marvel universe from a witty angle that makes it a lot more fun than the overcrowded Avengers movies. This film has a strong central character, a boisterous sense of humour and a relatively simple plot that never gets bogged down in explaining its mythology. Most of all, it's hugely entertaining, with a great cast and head-spinning kaleidoscopic effects.

Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) is a top New York neurosurgeon. Arrogant and dismissive, he maintains a friendship with his ex, fellow surgeon Christine (Rachel McAdams). But a car crash puts an end to his rock-n-roll lifestyle when his hands are seriously injured. After medicine fails to heal him, he turns to eastern mysticism, travelling to Kathmandu to study under the tutelage of the Ancient One (Tilda Swinton). She opens his mind to the magical power around him, and as he develops his powers with the serious, more experienced Mordo (Chiwetel Ejiofor), Stephen is pulled into an epic clash with the rebel sorcerer Kaecilius (Mads Mikkelsen), who wants to heal humanity by sending it into a dark, timeless parallel universe.

Despite the gloomy plot, Scott Derrickson directs the film with a very light touch, bringing out cheeky humour in every scene as these whip-smart characters interact with each other. Cumberbatch has probably never had a role that so fully draws on his real-life charisma and wit, and he shines as the swaggering, cocky doctor who has to rebuild his life in unexpected directions. For much of the film he's way out of his depth, which means that the supporting cast get a chance to steal scenes from him.

Swinton adds surprising depth to a role that's deliberately enigmatic, offering snappy reactions and subtle thoughtfulness to make the Ancient One thoroughly engaging. Ejiofor brings some earnestness as the order's true believer, while McAdams offers an edgy counterbalance as a sparky, intelligent outsider. And Mikkelsen adds surprising emotion to what could have been a simplistic villain.

So even if the plot seems a little thin, the actors fill every scene with deeper implications. And it moves at a fierce pace, as Derrickson's outrageously whizzy visuals tantalise the audience with trippy effects that seem to swallow the audience in layers of colourful 3D. This camp, deranged energy never allows the characters to take themselves too seriously, and it also makes sure that the big finale isn't too heavily destructive, a balance most Avengers movies struggle to maintain. Yes, Doctor Strange will change the tone of Marvel movies going forward, and that's a very good thing.

Rich Cline

Watch the trailer and various clips for Doctor Strange:



Doctor Strange

Facts and Figures

Genre: Sci fi/Fantasy

Run time: 76 mins

In Theaters: Monday 24th October 2016

Budget: $165M

Distributed by: LionsGate Entertainment

Production compaines: Marvel Studios

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

IMDB: 6.8 / 10

Cast & Crew

Producer:

Starring: as Stephen Strange / Doctor Strange, as Baron Karl Mordo, as The Ancient One, as Christine Palmer, as Kaecilius, as Wong, as Jonathan Pangborn, as Dr. Nicodemus West, Umit Ulgen as Sol Rama, as Lucian / Strong Zealot, Zara Phythian as Brunette Zealot, Alaa Safi as Tall Zealot, Katrina Durden as Blonde Zealot, Linda Louise Duan as Tina Minoru, Mark Anthony Brighton as Daniel Drumm, as Dr. Bruner, as Thor

Also starring:

Contactmusic

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