Time for another Marvel movie review, true believers, and this time we've got Doctor Strange on deck starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the titular Sorcerer Supreme.
Marvel Studios being willing to take a chance on its lesser-known heroes paid off in spades with both Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant-Man doing well enough to get high-profile sequels, and I think Doc is no different here. We'll definitely see more of him.
The story starts off with world renowned NYC neurosurgeon Dr. Stephen Strange showing off that his skills can indeed pay the bills, even impressing his former lover Dr. Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams) with a casual display of medical brilliance, on top the world and about to receive yet another prestigious award when a rainy night car accident changes everything in an instant.
Strange comes to with the lifeblood of his trade, his hands, irreparable, knowing full well that the only scalpel slinger gifted enough to have saved him was himself. Becoming increasingly desperate, he turns to a former spinal injury victim who was saved by Nepalese mystics, and thus begins one amazing adventure as he meets The Ancient One (a bald Tilda Swinton) and her students Mordo (Chiwetel Eijofor) and Wong (Benedict Wong) and learns that science can't explain everything.
The bad guy is the scene-chewing Kaecilius (the marvelous Mads Mikkelsen) and when I say the scenery chews in this film I mean it quite literally, apparently mystical arts fights involve a mirror dimension that makes the visual tricks in Inception look like a low budget student film as space folds in on itself in a kaleidoscope of gears and moving parts.
Visually this is Marvel's most striking film to date, even putting the effects in Guardians to shame. It's worth the price of admission just for the fight scenes alone but everything about this film and ILM's outstanding effects work stands out. See this film on the biggest screen you can.
I really enjoyed this one, as with most Marvel films the plot is bit threadbare but the acting and writing come through, Cumberbatch is as good of a Stephen Strange (both before and after his accident) as Robert Downey Jr. is Tony Stark or more recently, Chadwick Boseman is as T'Challa in the Marvel cinematic universe.
As always, stick around for the end credit scenes and enjoy the continuity to previous MCU films, as I'm looking forward to Guardians 2 in May, Spidey in July, and Thor: Ragnarok this time next year. It's a good flick to take your mind off the You Know What on Tuesday.
Hopefully we'll make some magic in a few days.