Dr. Strange (PG-13)

The highly anticipated newest addition to the Marvel universe, Dr. Strange (starring Benjamin Cumberbatch), has arrived!  I must say, I like this movie.  This may come as a surprise to those of you who are regulars.  You know this is so very NOT my favorite genre of film, by any measure.  I am unfamiliar with these characters, but I feel as though this works in my favor because I was able to go in with absolutely no expectations.

This movie was perfectly cast. Cumberbatch hit every note relaying Dr. Strange’s intelligence, egotism and sense of humor.  You will root for Strange to learn the power of humility following his fall from grace, because despite being extremely arrogant Strange manages to remain quite likable.  Chiwetel Ejiofor as Mordo and Tilda Swinton as The Ancient One did great jobs in their roles.  It is always a pleasure to see each of them.  These three actors together make a powerful team and their skill and efforts were not at all lost in all of the costumes, makeup and effects.  Rachel McAdams did a lovely job as Strange’s love interest and colleague, Catherine, although I may be biased because she will always be Allie from the Notebook to me.

The writing was quite good, overall. I never felt like I was being told a story, as the majority of what needed to be relayed was acted out, instead of narrated.  The dialogue was witty, humorous and informative.  The story line was well focused, never becoming confusing or muddled.  Most impressively, there wasn’t an obvious sequel set up (a practice which I always find obnoxiously condescending).  One feels as though the next chapter could go in many different directions.  There is no obvious next episode.

You can almost feel the fun director Scott Derrickson had making this movie, along with the cast and crew.  Nothing about it feels forced.  Despite how technical it is, it is effortless in its delivery.

The special effects, of course, were fantastic. You will feel like you are locked into some crazy dream once you begin to watch super beings bending matter, time and space around the world.  It is very cool.  This is the first time that I did not watch a movie in 3D that I truly wish I had.  I’m sure it is incredible and I highly recommend it.  I’d imagine it would be worth the extra cost as the visual entertainment in this film is superior.

Now let’s talk about the ending, shall we? No spoilers here, but I thought it was kind of silly; but I’ll allow it since the rest of the movie was so entertaining.  And even the silliness here is lighthearted, fun, and it made sense (kind of), so it is somewhat forgivable.

Dr. Strange earned 8 bloops out of 10. It is a good movie that was made to be seen in a theater at least once for the spectacular visual effects work alone.  The acting, which is usually difficult or nearly impossible to gage in this genre of movie, is more than solid.  I would even watch it again under the right circumstances.  It is a fun, visual feast that shouldn’t be missed.

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