You should know by now that I don’t do a movie review without putting in a whole bunch of spoilers and ranting about them, so you are now warned. Don’t read any further. F’real. Don’t come bitchin’ to me about me ruining the movie for you before you get a chance to watch it.
Let me just say right off, this movie was good. It had that Marvel Cinematic Universe formula going for it. A down-on-his-luck pompous-ass White guy finds himself in a bad situation, but through the help of an older wise person, and his Black sidekick/friend, they take down both the bad guy and the bad guy behind the bad guy. I think I just saw Iron Man with magic.
And that’s not a bad thing. This movie had a lot going for it. And all of it was done pretty well.
All that bitchin’ and complaining that The Ancient One was a middle-aged White woman instead of an older Asian man lead to about little to nothing. They even made fun of that with Doc (as he will be affectionately known from here on out) mistaking the older Asian man as The Ancient One, and not the White lady pouring his tea. Haha, jokes on us! I really didn’t care either way. I mean, they made Mordo Black and I didn’t hear shit about that.
Mini-montage, and Doc knows magic. And he wants to know more so he sneaks and gets the Eye of Agamotto and practices the spells out of the book. And he learns to bend time with it…wait, where have I heard that before….let me think…Tesseract – Space, Loki’s Scepter/Vision’s head jewel – Mind, Aether – Reality, Guardian’s of the Galaxy Orb – Power…we’re missing two…Time and Soul. Wait! Time! Could this be?! Short answer, yes, the Eye of Agamotto is no other than the fifth Infinity Stone in the MCU, the Time gem.
Let’s talk about Mordo. I thought he was going to be all against Doc from learning magic, but he was the one who seemingly convinced the Ancient One to let him in. Okay, I was wrong about that. And they fought the bad guy, Kaecilius, together. But will Mordo be revealed to be the real bad guy behind all of it like he is in the comic books? No, not really…well, we’ll get to that later. By the way, Mordo barely used his magic Staff of the Living Tribunal (which like I said in the figure review, DID have a name to it).
The real bad guy behind Kaecilius is none other than the Dread Dormammu, a principal arch-enemy of Doctor Strange. In the comic books, he now looks like the Build-A-Figure I just completed (thanks to the leg in the Karl Mordo figure). But in the movie, he kind of favors his original incarnation, and what I always remembered him looking like since I’ve been reading comics in the 80’s (seen here on the right).
And let’s just let it be known Doctor Strange pulls some shit that will make Dormammu his arch-nemesis in the movies too. Not only that, he got Kaecilius and his disciples turned into another dark dimension favorite: Mindless Ones! (take that Fox and the stupid movie rights to the Fantastic Four, who have also fought the Mindless Ones many times in the comic books)
Everything wrapped up neatly? Not really…Mordo does not like that both The Ancient One and Doctor Strange both have violated the laws of physics through magical means and he no longer wants to be associated with them. Leaving just Doctor Strange and Wong to defend the Earth! And sure, some random red shirt sorcerers may help too, I guess. They didn’t seem very effective, but were pretty good at being cannon fodder.
Leading to end cut scene one: Doctor Strange is having a conversation with…wait for it…THOR…about him and Loki looking for Odin somewhere on Earth. A definite lead-in to Thor: Ragnarok and we may even see Doctor Strange make a cameo in that movie.
Leading to end cut scene two: the guy channeling magic to make himself walk (the guy who originally told Doc where to get power from) is attacked by Mordo who declares there are too many sorcerers channeling the power of magic! Sequel here we come! That is of course after Doctor Strange shows up in the Infinity War… I mean, at this point, he kind of has to because he’s in possession of one of the Infinity stones, right?
One last thing…I believe the Darkhold in the Agents of SHIELD television show (along with Ghost Rider) was supposed to be their mystical connection to Doctor Strange? In the long run, it didn’t seem to have anything to do with the movie outside of they are both dealing with magic. This connection was impossibly weaker than the one earlier this year with them mentioning the Sokovia Accords in the show, and then not really feeling the effects from it. Maybe Wong will show up in the show to collect the book from Coulson or something. That would be a good connection.
Other than that, and me nitpickin’ the hell out of it, the movie was really good, and definitely worth seeing at an IMAX theater. The 3D effects during the reality altering battles were really damn good. I have a $10 off IMAX coupon that I still need to use and may use it to go see it again. It’s not the best Marvel movie (that hovers between The Avengers and Captain America: Civil War) but it is absolutely one I will see again several times.