Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness Review
Here’s my Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness Review which opens May 4 in cinemas. The film is directed by Sam Raimi and stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Wong, Chiewetel Ejiofor and Xochitl Gomez.
Benedict Cumberbatch once again shows up as Avenger Numero Uno aka Doctor Strange as he ventures into the Multiverse of Madness. In this new adventure, he has to foil the plans of Avenger gone rogue Scarlet Witch who is hellbent on getting her lost kids back to this universe even if she has to kill to get what she wants. Caught in all this is a mysterious young girl named America Chavez who Strange has vowed to protect at all cost and fromt deadly threats who want her powers.
Sam Raimi was a good replacement from the first film’s Scott Derickson. The Spider-Man director was able to deftly mix horror elements with the superhero genre with this new film. He captures the terror and suspense and I’m really surprised that he’s able to pull off scary situations in what could have been frame as a generic superhero scene.
You’ll have a grand time with jump scares here.
There’s a lot suspenseful moments throughout the film which really proves that Raimi’s in his element here. He even brought in his frequent collaborator, friend the star star of the cult-classic Evil Dead franchise, Bruce Campbell. But I won’t spoil where you’ll spot him but its a nice fun cameo. Speaking of Evil Dead, there are some references and homages that pop up in the movie which has the markings of Sam Raimi.
Benedict Cumberbatch continues to evolve and expand the character. He’s grown so much since the first movie and yet with every appearance in a Marvel movie, we learn more about him or in this case grow with him. In this film, we explore Stephen’s happiness and how he feels about being left behind. Of course there’s also a little introspection as to what makes a hero and whether he falls under that category.
The film also continues to show how reckless Stephen Strange is as a hero and a sorcerer but he gets away with whatever the hell he does with a slap on the wrist and a stern warning.
The Scarlet Witch aka Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) continues her warpath in this movie after where we left her
And as promised, she’s the clear cut villain in this movie. No Mephistos or Agatha Harkness. Just her and her ongoing quest to find her twins Billy and Tommy, who were lost to her at the end of the Disney+ series Wandavision. And if there’s anything What If thought us a few months ago, is that Wanda Maximoff is a character that you are not supposed to triffle with.
Newcomer Xochitl Gomez shows a lot of potential as a future Avenger, a potential Young Avenger and a Hollywood star. She brings a sense of innocence and loss for her role as the young multiversal being America Chavez. If there’s anything that hampers her here in “Multiverse of Madness” it would have to be weak writing.
They were able to flesh out the whos, whats and wheres of the her but for me I feel like this could have been more. They could have added more to her backstory or even a few minutes of flashbacks to help us relate or cheer for her. Still, its nice to see her make an appearance, a fresh new character joining the MCU.
Benedict Wong’s Wong gets a big push here although the current status quo ain’t my cup of tea, it still provides new character development and fundamentally changes the relationship between Stephen and Wong.
There were also some characters that shown the spotlight but was barely in it. Could have been good but with only two or three lines, that hardly mattered in the overall scheme of things.
In terms of narrative and structure, I’d say that it was pretty standard. Hero meets new character, they team up, get separated and the new character saves the day. The big difference here is that its done on such a grand scale. The weakest part for me here is how the threat level fluctuates between Wanda as a dangerous character left unchecked to she could be a big threat to the multiverse. But its never fully fleshed out. Wish they really took time to build on that.
I love the musical score they used throughout the film. There is one spectacular use of music and musical scores here that I wasn’t expecting and when they did that, it was really nice to see onscreen.
The cinematography is so fine and I loved how they played with the angles. Speaking of angles and cinematography, you’ll be surprised at how they tried to top off that trippy moment from the first “Doctor Strange” movie. It’s a little crazy but its still a visual spectacle; best seen on a large screen like an IMAX screen.
The movie is also chockful of easter eggs that it definitely warrants a second watch. I’m already gearing up to watch the film again because I feel like I missed a ton of easter eggs and references for the film.
Lastly, for a movie that’s got so much going on, the Multiverse of Madness post-credit scenes are a bit lacking.
That’s it for my Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness review. I can’t really dive into it without spoiling the film for you.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness review
Special thanks to Marvel and Disney PH for the invite! Follow me on Twitter at @thefanboyseo for more movie news and updates!