Doctor Strange Review


Jake Standerfer, Editor in Chief

Marvel movies typically remain defined by the same sequence of events. First, some sort of far from super character is involved in some sort of scientific experiment or accident that results in them gaining special powers. Then, this character learns to use his or her powers, with the ultimate goal of good. However, Doctor Strange entirely strays from this formulaic plot construction.

Rather than ride on the coattails of other Marvel formulas and successes, the newest Marvel release follows a man on a quest for power. His journey is not from accident, but from self determination, similar to the character arch of Batman within D.C. Comic’s universe. And the powers gained from this journey hold mysterious, psychedelic, dark and supernatural implications, divergent from Marvel’s typical pseudo-scientific route typical of films such as Iron Man and Captain America.

Complementing the mysterious, “strange” nature of the film is quirky yet stoic Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch). Following an accident that disables him, Strange seeks mystic powers to heal him and improve himself, going to the Ancient One (Tilda Swinton). This duo pairs well together, although Swinton feels slightly out of place in her role. Following this, Strange is granted the mystic powers of wizardry, and must use these dark forces to defend against greater evil forces.

All things considered, the plot and characters of the film create an average Marvel film. However, the sometimes less than enticing plot and characters are dismissed by the overwhelming visual accomplishments of the movie. Utilizing a combination of the psychedelic imagery of the original Strange comics and an astounding visual scope similar to films such as Inception, director Scott Derrickson creates an astounding visual presentation standing out above and beyond all other Marvel films.

While other aspects may not entertain, viewers will undeniably be entertained by the raw visual stimulation in front of their eyes. Doctor Strange may not be the best Marvel movie. However, it is perhaps the best looking one.