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Wick's Review

Created Nov 13, 2016 05:43PM PST • Edited Nov 13, 2016 05:43PM PST

  1. Quality
  2. Really Great 4.5

    Marvel has yet another big hit and series-starter in Doctor Strange, an often funny, visually dazzling and even profound superhero epic. While not a surprise, the studio’s run remains nothing less than marvelous.

    The movie proves rewarding in several ways. First of all it’s funny, with a steady patter of bon mots that pretty much all work. It’s also visually inventive, albeit seems somewhat derivative of Christopher Nolan’s Inception, with urban canyons becoming plastic constructs that turn like watch gears. Next, its popcorn philosophy highlights Eastern conceptions of reality and purpose, including how people can find a worthwhile calling in the face of tragedy. Finally, it lays the predicate for a terrific new movie franchise.

    Such value would be strange from most blockbusters, but we’ve come to expect nothing less from Marvel, making Doctor Strange not very strange at all. Now on to the two sequels teased over the closing credits…

  3. Great 4.0

    Benedict Cumberbatch ably inhabits Dr. Stephen Strange, onetime brain surgeon newly christened as a sorcerer for good. Cumberbatch is ideal in a superhero role that’s more erudite than athletic. It’s going to be a treat watching him in the soon-to-be appearing sequels, along with several of his strong supporting cast.

    • Mads Mikkelsen gives the movie what every thriller needs, a terrific villain. Is there a more compelling actor working today?
    • Tilda Swinton imbues a mystical Eastern teacher called The Ancient One with grace and subtle strength. Swinton is one of the greatest actresses working today.
    • Chiwetel Ejiofor is almost too suave as a fellow sorcerer called Mordo. Let’s see what he does in future episodes.
    • Rachel McAdams underwhelms as Dr. Strange’s colleague / crush, but then she pretty much always underwhelms.
    • Benedict Wong subtly plays an understated fellow sorcerer, though I may be judging him too harshly due to cultural bias.
    • Michael Stuhlbarg disappoints in a small role as a fellow doctor.
    • Benjamin Bratt is interesting as a medical miracle.
    • Stan Lee’s cameo is as a man on a bus.
  4. Male Stars Really Great 4.5
  5. Female Stars Really Great 4.5
  6. Female Costars Very Good 3.5
  7. Male Costars Great 4.0
  8. Really Great 4.5

    Doctor Strange proves yet again that Marvel’s deep catalog of storyboards is nearly bottomless. As is their wont, they hired a relatively unknown director, horror specialist Scott Derrickson, and gifted him a fabulous story and set of characters created by Steve Ditko and Stan Lee. It’s like falling off a log for these guys.

    As for the series, the next time we’re going to see Doctor Strange appears to be in 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok.

  9. Direction Really Great 4.5
  10. Play Really Great 4.5

    Jon Spaihts, Scott Derrickson & C. Robert Cargill worked from the Marvel comics by Steve Ditko & the great Stan Lee.

  11. Music Really Great 4.5
  12. Visuals Really Great 4.5
  13. Content
  14. Risqué 2.0
  15. Sex Titillating 1.6
  16. Violence Fierce 2.4
  17. Rudeness Salty 2.0
  18. Supernatural 4.0
  19. Circumstantial Surreal 3.0
  20. Biological Supernatural 4.0
  21. Physical Fantasy 5.0


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Mar 26, 2017 11:04PM

Regarding BrianSez’s Review
“The sorcerer Strange has the potential to be a crazy-science version of Tony Stark.” Exactly!