Fa­mil­iar story but amaz­ing ef­fects

Central Otago Mirror - - CLASSIFIEDS -

By now, su­per­hero ori­gin sto­ries are fa­mil­iar beasts.

While not ex­actly a su­per­hero per se, Marvel’s mys­ti­cal mage Doc­tor Strange is still the re­cip­i­ent of a fairly stock stan­dard in­tro­duc­tion here – Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch in­tro­duced as a bit of an ar­ro­gant dick, is con­fronted with a chal­lenge that changes his world­view, gets abil­i­ties and et cetera.

For­tu­nately, his hero’s jour­ney is brought to life with suf­fi­cient psy­che­delic spec­ta­cle to pa­per over the plot’s fa­mil­iar­ity, along­side Marvel’s ex­pected knack for in­ject­ing or­ganic hu­mour into pro­ceed­ings and cast­ing strong sup­port­ing ac­tors.

Cum­ber­batch is a cred­i­ble med­i­cal mas­ter turned sor­cery stu­dent, and as ex­pected, Tilda Swin­ton brings both dra­matic weight and light relief as his ini­tia­tor into the mys­ti­cal arts.

Round­ing out the cast, in Strange’s cor­ner Chi­we­tel Ejio­for, Bene­dict Wong, and Rachel McA­dams do as much as they can with fairly generic ma­te­rial, while prin­ci­pal vil­lain Mads Mikkelsen doesn’t nearly have enough to sink his teeth into.

Luck­ily, Mikkelsen’s screen pres­ence is po­tent enough to get away with his char­ac­ter’s min­i­mal mo­ti­va­tion and de­vel­op­ment, and for­tu­nately we’re spared the sort of un­likely his­tor­i­cal bond with the hero that is seen else­where far too of­ten. The other true stars of the film lie in the spe­cial-ef­fects de­part­ment, though. Doc­tor Strange boasts the most mind-bend­ing vis­ual ef­fects I’ve ever seen, over­load­ing one’s mind, while still re­main­ing co­her­ent.

Cum­ber­batch’s ini­ti­a­tion into

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