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Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is a 2022 American superhero horror film based on the Marvel Comics character Doctor Strange. Produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, it is intended to be the sequel to Doctor Strange (2016) and the 28th film of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film was directed by Sam Raimi from a script written by Jade Bartlett and Michael Waldron, and stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange, alongside Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Wong, and Chiwetel Ejiofor.

Plot[]

Following the events of mh:besttvshows:WandaVision, Spider-Man: No Way Home and the first season of Loki, Doctor Stephen Strange casts a forbidden spell that opens the door to the multiverse, including an alternate version of Strange, whose threat to humanity is too great for the combined forces of Strange, Wong, and Wanda Maximoff.

Why It Dives into the Multiverse[]

  1. Sam Raimi shows off his excellent directing skills, akin to those he put in practice in his Spider-Man film trilogy. Not to mention, this was a step up from his previous films non Marvel related, since his films before 2022, including Paranormal Activity, can come across as either boring or just simply unbearable to watch
  2. The film not only pick up what happened after mh:besttvshows:WandaVision and season one of Loki, but it also picks up what happened for a few months as well after Spider-Man: No Way Home, although it still work for people who hasn't watched the show.
  3. Benedict Cumberbatch played multiple roles for alternate versions of Doctor Strange in one film (Doctor Strange, Sinister Strange, Defender Strange, Zombie Defender Strange and Supreme Strange), providing that he has incredible range.
  4. Unique and amazing visuals effects, like the scene where Strange and Chavez enters the portal and passes through the multiverse for the first time.
  5. Phenomenal fight and action scenes. It perfectly make clever usage of all the individual characters' unique abilities.
  6. It explores the character of Chiwetel Ejiofor (Karl Mordo) as he turns to villainy and betrayal found from the comics in Doctor Strange that were set up, although he appears for couple of scenes.
  7. Reed Richards (or Mr. Fantastic) is officially introduced in the movie for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, who is played by John Krasinski, thus fulfilling the fan service that heavily predicted Krasinski's first appearance in the MCU as Mr. Fantastic.
  8. There's a wider variety of magic in terms of spells, color, and style in the film, leading to more unique magic combat such as 616-Strange and Sinister Strange's musical sheet fight, no doubt to alleviate some of the criticisms of the common orange sparkly style of magic previously seen in the MCU.
  9. Danny Elfman did a excellent job with the score.
  10. It introduced the horror elements in Marvel Cinematic Universe for the first time, with the 1980s-style. It makes more sense for critics and audiences when you realise Sam Raimi, famous for his horror films, directed this movie.
  11. Wanda is a fantastic villain, and can even be pretty scary at times.
  12. A darker tone than the first movie, yet it does not forget to have humor and positivity that barely feel forced to do right unlike many previous superhero movies that tried too hard to be dark & gritty, especially the films from DC.
  13. America Chavez is a great new character with an unique power, who use the powers to sent them in the multiverse.
    • Despite the fact that America Chavez is a lesbian in the comics, the film did not pander to the LGBT community as it only focus on the main plot and backgrounds of a long journey that Chavez and Dr. Strange had to go through to put an end to the schemes of the Scarlet Witch.
    • The concept that made America Chavez living with lesbian parents rather than making her a lesbian herself like the comics was very well executed as the childhood tragedy that happened to her parents pushed Chavez to a extension that made a amazing character development which mainly involves full control of her powers necessary to defeat the Scarlet Witch. Plus, this change was accurate to the comics, as America has two moms, Amalia and Elena Chavez who gave their lives to protect America as well as other children in a testing facility.
    • Thankfully, Disney didn't make a big deal about the LGBT part, unlike Eternals.
    • Unlike Captain Marvel, America Chavez was not written as a overpowered superheroine and a egoistical feminist that would be used as a plot device within Doctor Strange's very own movie.
  14. Not only does Zombie Defender Strange look nightmarish, but he casts a spell similar to the Images of Ikkon (like in Infinity War against Thanos), giving him multiple arms and making him look like a monster straight out of a movie like Insidious or Sinister (the latter of which, coincidentally, executive producer Scott Derrickson, who also directed the first film, was the director for).
  15. Patrick Stewart returns as Charles Xavier / Professor X, who portrayed him in 20th Century Fox's X-Men film series, as the leader of the Illuminati. Not only that, but Anson Mount returns as Blackagar Boltagon / Black Bolt, who portrayed him in ABC's Marvel's Inhumans. Considering the critical reception
  16. A very exciting mid-credit scene where Strange develops a third eye and is approached by a sorcerer, Clea, who invites him to avert an incursion in the dark dimension.
  17. Bruce Campbell's cameo as Pizza Poppa, a vendor from an alternate universe is hilarious, as he gets a gag about Doctor Strange casting a spell to make him punch himself in the face for three weeks. In the post-credits scene, it finally stops, prompting him to manically laugh, look at the camera and shout "IT'S OVER!"

Bad Qualities[]

  1. The pacing, although well-done, can be off sometimes.
  2. The movie isn't for squeamish viewers, since the deaths in the film can get shockingly gruesome and gory, especially Black Bolt's. One could even raise the question of how it was even rated PG-13 and not R.
  3. The film is somewhat confusing for casual viewers, because everything happening here can sometimes happen way too fast and it even requires viewers to watch Disney+ shows WandaVision, Loki, and What If..? to get to know concepts about the multiverse and its countless variants of superheroes and villains.
  4. False advertising:
    • The teaser and trailers show that Sinister Strange would be the main antagonist of the film as he ominously quoted to the main Doctor Strange, "things just got out of hand" while the Scarlet Witch confront inner struggles as she helps Doctor Strange with the multiverse issues. However, Sinister Strange only appeared near the climax and had less than twenty minutes of screen time as he got killed off by Doctor Strange after a short violent feud over the copy of the Darkhold.
    • Somewhat misleading title: Though the title indicates that this is a movie about Doctor Strange and his multiversal adventures, the film focuses more on subplots regarding the schemes of the Scarlet Witch, Wanda's children, and America Chavez's journey as Doctor Strange had succeeded in fixing issues within them.
    • Despite being a decently well written plot, the film could cause confusion to the audience whether it is about Doctor Strange, the Scarlet Witch, America Chavez, or their adventures within the multiverse.
    • Karl Mordo was featured to be one of the main characters as a primary enemy of Doctor Strange, however it turns out that he was not the same Karl Mordo Doctor Strange had trained and fought with in the previous film, but Karl Mordo in this film was simply a random multiversial variant who is the member of the Illuminati that captured Doctor Strange and America Chavez. Additionally, similar to Sinister Strange, he only had less than fifteen minutes of screen time, thus wasting the opportunity to have a conflict between Doctor Strange and the main Karl Mordo.
  5. For some reason, possibly due to making sure the film was a success in foreign countries, America Chavez was rewritten from being a lesbian to someone having lesbian parents, although America having two moms was a thing in the comics.

Reception[]

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness received generally positive reviews from critics, who praised Raimi's direction, the cinematography, visual effects, musical score, action sequences, emotional weight, and performances of the cast (especially Cumberbatch and Olsen), while criticism was aimed at its pacing. On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 78% of 103 critics' reviews are positive, with an average rating of 6.6/10. The website's consensus reads, "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness labors under the weight of the sprawling MCU, but Sam Raimi's distinctive direction casts an entertaining spell.". Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 63 out of 100 based on 36 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".

The film had the most ticket presales through Fandango since Spider-Man: No Way Home. In April 2022, Boxoffice Pro projected the film could earn between $190–210 million in the United States and Canada on its opening weekend, with a total domestic gross of $450–560 million.

Videos[]

Trivia[]

  • Michael Giacchino was set to return for the sequel by October 2019, when Derrickson was set as director. After Raimi took over, Danny Elfman was hired as composer.
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