As soon as I heard Doctor Strange was being directed by Scott Derrickson I knew it was going to be a treat. The only films I have seen by Derrickson are Sinister and Deliver us from Evil. Sinister bring visually creepy, dark and eerie and my favorite horror movie of all time I couldn’t wait for Doctor Strange.
The visuals for this film were talked about for a long time. Kevin Feige, President of Marvel Studios, discussed the film before its release saying it would be like an “acid-trip” and “mind bringing”. The visuals in Doctor Strange are definitely the most unique and inspired I have ever seen on the big screen. The use of fractals (search up fractal gifs if you haven’t heard of them before) was fun and unique but also an excellent way to represent the quantum realm and the multiverse in the MCU. Fractals were also used to show the quantum realm in Ant-man. A lot of the the visuals were also reminiscent of kaleidoscopes and the colors used were vibrant. The quantum realm reminded me of glow in the dark mini putt. Vibrant neon colors on a black canvas. Very different from what we have seen so far in the MCU (besides the sample of the quantum realm in Ant-man). Some of the reality bending that happens in this film is also reminiscent of what we saw in Inception back in 2010. This is like
The acting and casting in Doctor Strange was pretty much perfect. Everyone played their parts excellently and I couldn’t really think of anyone else in their roles. Yeah Tilda Swintons character, The Ancient One, was originally a Tibetan man but it is a re-imagining of a character, which I really enjoyed. The character was never written to be Asian in the film anyways. If you have problems with casting like this then I give you advice from The Ancient one herself, “Open your eyes”. Chiwetel Ejiofor plays Baron Mordo who was originally a white man from Transylvania. Casting can be changed and altered for talent which is one of Marvels departure from the source material. Cumberbatch was a great Doctor Strange. He was able to portray the egotistical Stephen Strange but also become a hero we would eventually root for.
The music in the film was amazing as we would expect from Michael Giacchino who has composed many recent block busters such as Inside Out, Jurassic World, Zootopia, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Star Trek Trilogy and is currently working on Star Wars: Rogue One and will compose for Spider-Man: Homecoming. His music has an old movie feel to it but it accompanies the insane new movie film style of Doctor Strange very well. I always look forward to hearing more from Giacchino and luckily he is getting a lot of work in Hollywood.
Overall the film does a good job at giving one of the first solo origin stories we have gotten in a while. It does follow that same formal of a individual having everything going right for them then everything goes wrong, they are driven through turmoil to make themselves better and through that rises our hero. Doctor Strange does that in a vibrant and new way that stands its own but also accompanies very well, the ever growing Marvel Cinematic Universe.