DOCTOR STRANGE

★★★★

PURE MAGIC

THEATRICAL REVIEW
By Brent Davidson
25th October 2016

Time to talk about my childhood again, guys! When I was a kid, I was obsessed with magic (let's be honest, still am). I would make potions in the bathtub, write my own books of spells, and gesture at things - like automatic doors - convincing myself that it was my mystical ability that had opened it. If only little Brent had known about Doctor Strange, it is likely he would have had yet another magical idol.

Dr Stephen Strange is a prodigious brain surgeon who, after a tragic accident, is left unable to perform even the most simple of surgical tasks. Expending all options in his search for healing, he turns to a mystical path high in the mountains of Nepal. From there, he learns mysterious magics in order to protect the world from the forces of evil.

SWITCH: 'DOCTOR STRANGE' TRAILER

So I guess this is a relatively standard storyline for a Marvel film. It's basically everything we have come to expect from the franchise - but if you think I am disappointed, think again! I walked out of 'Doctor Strange' feeling satisfied in being delivered what I had expected… and then some! For the most part, these films are just so. Damn. Reliable.

And I love it.

The performances are wonderful, even if Benedict Cumberbatch's American accent is slightly jarring. His voice and British accent are so easily recognisable it's takes a moment to let yourself adjust. Tilda Swinton, in my opinion, can literally play anything and I'd be interested.

Even a lamp.

I walked out of 'Doctor Strange' feeling satisfied in being delivered what I had expected... and then some.

I would watch that movie again and again.

I keep finding myself thinking about the Marvel Universe as a child that is growing up. In the beginning, it was just making solid representations of the comic books (its "mirror stage”, if you'll forgive my Lacan). As it ages, much like us, it is becoming increasingly more self-aware. This self-awareness is, to me, one of the most charming features of what is becoming a genre in itself. This defining feature allows the movies to not take themselves too seriously and they understand how much they are asking us to believe - agreeing how ridiculous it is themselves.

Magic. A movie doesn't need much more than that to drag me in. But after seeing 'Doctor Strange' and with the help of some good friends who have recently introduced me to the world of physical comics (which wasn't a hard sell), I think I have found my new favourite character. Not to mention as someone who is learning Auslan (Australian Sign Language), magic made up of a series of hand gestures is right up my alley. With so many things going for it, it was hard not to be put under the spell of 'Doctor Strange’.

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