Doctor Strange is the first Doctor Strange movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (actually, as of this writing, it’s the only one but I’m assuming they’ll do more). It follows Dr. Stephen Strange as he looses the use of his hands and goes to Nepal to try to get the use of them back and instead finds a sect of mystic sorcerers.
Let’s start with the good. The special effects in this movie are fantastic, in both senses of the word. They did a great job with the special effects, of which almost the whole movie uses. The effects themselves are also fantastical, with folded cities, portals through space and time, and a living cloak with a sense of humor.
2—Doctor Strange Himself
It took me more than half the movie to warm up to Dr. Stephen Strange, not exactly something you want in your main character. While the movie starts with a show of Dr. Strange’s competence as a neurosurgeon, a good move, it goes right into showing his arrogance, something he doesn’t loose until way past the halfway point of the movie. Besides being arrogant, he also dismisses and devastates the only person who seems to actually care about him once he’s lost the use of his hands. So no, I didn’t like Dr. Strange.
I did like that he wasn’t automatically the best at fighting, and that he won using his brain rather than fighting skills.
Besides Dr. Strange trying to get the use of his hands back, the plot centers on a rogue sorcerer who wants to drag the earth into the Dark Dimension of Dormammu, thinking it will bring immortality. Which it will, sort of. I thought both plots were handled well, and the climax worked.
I’d be remiss not to mention the white-washing of the character The Ancient One, who in the comics is Tibetan. I won’t get into the controversy here, you can read about it on the Wikipedia page or elsewhere.
I did ultimately enjoy the movie, despite the first half.