This is a fun comic book movie with an interesting and unique super-hero! I’d rate this film on a par with “Iron Man I.” It’s sort of a hybrid between “Inception” (Christopher Nolan – 2010) and “Star Wars.” The film has amazing CGI/special effects, which reminded me of “Inception,” but the basic theme of the movie is very much like “Star Wars.”
Dr. Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) is the world’s greatest neurosurgeon, and he knows it. He is rich, arrogant, and does things with a scalpel that nobody else can – such as removing a bullet from an inoperable area of the brain without even breaking a sweat! (Of course, when I was on my neurosurgery rotation in medical school in 1972, I also removed a bullet from an inoperable part of the brain, but I broke out into a sweat!) Strange is cold, distant, and keeps his on-again-off-again girlfriend, Dr. Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams), at arm’s length.
Dr. Strange soon gets into a horrible car accident, wrecking his hands. Despite multiple and very expensive hand surgeries, he can barely hold a fork! He can’t work, so he is going broke and his whole identity has been shattered. Leaving western medicine behind, he travels to Nepal with hopes of being healed. Although skeptical, he has some mind-blowing experiences via the Sorceress Supreme of an occult mystic sect, “The Ancient One” (a “Yoda”-like teacher played by Tilda Swinton). He learns that there is much more to reality than the world with which he is familiar. He is taught, via arduous training, to manipulate universal energy (much like “The Force”), to travel to other universes, and develops some other amazing powers (like a “Jedi”). His hands get healed in the process, but, by this time, he has left his prior surgeon’s life behind.
Unfortunately, Kaecilus (Mads Mikkelsen) – a master magician previously taught by “The Ancient One” – has gone over to the dark side (as if a “Sith”) and now wants to eliminate “The Ancient One” and her allies. Strange is needed to help defeat Kaecilius, and they have several incredible battles.
I really enjoyed this movie, and I eagerly look forward to the 11 sequels. I wish, however, that Rachel had a much bigger and better part.