Between their attitude, arrogance, charm, ease with the ladies, and an unrivalled ingenuity that makes them standout as exceptions against their peers, it’s easy to see why many would think of both Iron Man and Doctor Strange as being essentially the same characters juxtaposed against each other as a metaphor for magic versus technology.
Also, they both have killer facial hair.
Unfortunately, the crew know this and they do all they can to keep it going, From fast cars to faster quips, Doctor Strange plays almost as if it were an Iron Man reboot with a twist of Harry Potter. And while I’m all for watching another movie of Iron Man’s calibre, the problem is I’m not keen on watching another Iron Man movie unless it’s, well, Iron Man.
Ironically, as the movie progresses, Doctor Strange seems all-too-aware of its similarities to its founding father and does what it can to avoid the beaten path… and marches itself right into Iron Man 2 territory.
Burdened with the responsibility of explaining magic in this universe, it almost feels like Doctor Strange had to compensate for the two Thor movies that came before… and did nothing other than to say that magic is really but science. This kinda leaves Doctor Strange in a weird place having to find a way to make a contradictory statement coexist.
Fortunately, the supporting cast of characters are pretty strong and stand apart from Iron Man… other than the fact that the protagonist has an African-American sidekick and a pretty, level-headed girlfriend as well… Dammit, Doctor Strange, gimme something to work with here!
Well, the action definitely deserves to be highlighted. Imagine Inception but actually interesting. Doctor Strange exercises all of that mind-bending physics and, with a dash of classic superhero action, makes for some of the best sequences seen in the MCU.
Unfortunately, the script kinda drops the ball with humour with some moments being a little too Marvel-ish… even for a Marvel movie. For some reason, the writers of Doctor Strange seem to not want any kind of emotion to resonate with the audience for long, often resorting to a humour beat to break the tension.
Now, this isn’t to say that Doctor Strange isn’t a bad movie—it’s, in fact, still a good one, and a very fun one. The character does have his own arc that puts him on a very different path from the Armoured Avenger. It’s just that this individuality never really shines through. And that will be a huge problem come Avengers 3 when a whole bunch of very strong on-screen personalities are fighting for air time.
Doctor Strange hits the screens on the 27th of October