Friday, November 18, 2016

Doctor Strange

Imagine if you will a role played by Benedict Cumberbatch. He plays a man who doesn't shy away from bragging about his intellect (and earning a few adversaries in the process), displaying an insatiable hunger to learn more. Now which role was being described: his star-making turn on Sherlock or the titular character of Scott Derrickson's Doctor Strange?

Admittedly there's a strong possibility that Cumberbatch was cast in Doctor Strange because of Sherlock. (There is the occasional allusion to the show throughout the film.) Yes, he is good at playing the arrogant genius, no doubt about that. (He got an Oscar nomination for such a role after all.) But does it warrant the whitewashing?

Oh, it's worth mentioning that said whitewashing isn't just with Cumberbatch's role but also with Tilda Swinton's. Yes, they are both good in their respective roles but does that excuse the refusal of casting actors of color in favor of two white British actors? Of course not. (And let's not begin with Marvel's bad track record with female characters.)

But enough of those discrepancies; let's focus on the positive from Doctor Strange. The humor throughout is touch different than previous Marvel entries, being more slapstick in some scenes. And those visual effects, holy smokes. This is one of those rare comic book movies where 3-D is a must. (Eat your heart out, Inception.)

Doctor Strange has some glaring mistakes here and there (mostly with some of the casting) but overall it's thoroughly entertaining. (Sounds hypocritical but it's the truth.) Coming from someone who doesn't think much of the superhero craze from recent years, this is a title you should see.

My Rating: ****1/2

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