The Marvel Cinematic Universe just got a very strange change
Move over Scarlet Witch; there’s a new wizard in town, and his name is Doctor Steven Strange. He brings with him new destinations, never before seen universes and some visually stunning CGI work. While Doctor Strange continues with old grounds, there is an enrichment of the MCU. The final product is, however, still a Marvel movie filled with costly Marvel mistakes, but the changes prove to be a nice step forward.
A neurosurgeon both charming and arrogant, named Dr. Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), lives life to the fullest. His arrogance leads him to a car crash which severely damages the nerves in his hands causing him to develop shaky hands. After the numerous attempts to recover, Strange decides to embark on a journey to Nepal.
There he meets The Ancient One (Tilda Swinton), a powerful and magical being, who shows him the way of magic. As Strange uncovers the power of the magic, Kaecilius (Mads Mikkelson) tries to destroy his plans using the forbidden dark magic. As worlds clash, Strange will soon find out about his true potential.
There isn’t any question that Doctor Strange’s dazzling visual effects are this movie’s strength. The buildings of New York bending and twisting is phenomenal work that aids the film with its flaws. The magic is also a great addition to the MCU. This mystical element added to the amazing fight sequences as well to the overall Marvel universe.
Benedict Cumberbatch and Tilda Swinton continue to be great actors. Their performances were both powerful and emotional. Cumberbatch is the star of this movie, and he drives it home. His character arc changes as he learns different information about chakras and energy. Swinton’s performance is excellent as well. While questions may have arisen about the whitewashing of Asian talent, Swinton delivers yet again an incredible performance to here diverse roles. She was fantastic, but that role could have gone to an Asian actor without any fuss.
Though, Doctor Strange isn’t without its Marvel tropes. The villain is completely forgettable, and the movie greatly underutilizes him. His fight sequences are nothing special, and he is only there to provide the film with a villain. Though not the first time Marvel has made this mistake, and it is time to call them out on it. Kaecillius falls yet again into the forgettable Marvel villains that you probably won’t remember in a week.
The strangest flaw is something that Marvel has had problems with sometimes. The comic relief in Doctor Strange comes in such awkward places. Sometimes, it hit, but other times it completely affected the tone of the movie. The poorly timed humor robbed some of the most powerful scenes in the film and what could have been pivotal scenes were sometimes crushed by a single misplaced joke.
Doctor Strange does take a jab at the MCU formula that people grew tired of yet prove that there is still much more to do. However, it is a change of pace and a glimpse of what’s to come. The future Marvel films will surely adopt this mythology. Of all the gates they opened, who knows what’s next?