Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
The weekend biggie got slightly delayed due to unavoidable reasons but finally I managed to watch Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness last evening. Marvel is always known to push its boundaries and with it your imagination. So if it was a grand reunion of all 3 protagonists of the Spiderman universes or a grand collaboration by the Avengers to overcome the might of Thanos, this time the action is spread across multiple universes or in other words the multiverse. So then did Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness manage to impress, lets find out.
Story & Screenplay
Although many of you may have already watched it, but for those who haven’t I will not be revealing anything about the plot as it may lead to instant spoilers. But the story is a high concept one and one of those Marvel films which require a good amount of reference to its previous films/series to truly understand its essence. So for those of you who haven’t watched the previous in the list, it may be a good idea to either watch them or atleast read about them to understand the references here. The screenplay is taut and moves at a brisk pace, although it does get slightly convoluted towards the end. This is perhaps one of the darkest films of the MCU with a brief element of horror. Also, you need to stay attentive and pay attention to minor references almost throughout the duration of the film, a slight lapse and you would possibly find yourself struggling to keep pace with the film. One thing which I found refreshing was the human factor of the antagonist. She came from a place of love which is why you do not hate her completely.
One drawback that I had with the film was that although there is “madness” in the title of the film, the madness is missing in the multiverse. I would have preferred an even darker tone to this universe which would have had a prolific impact on me as a viewer. So beyond the high concept story, the storytelling was good but not something which would make me go “Wow”. The template was standard and a tad convoluted towards the end which didn’t quite work for me. Another drawback was the characterization which lacked that byte especially a major character like Chavez. But the ending and the mid-credit scene do make things interesting. So overall, well penned screenplay minus the madness.
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are entertaining with typical MCU humour thrown in the narrative. The BGM is pretty enthralling and definitely heightens the drama. The cinematography and VFX are top notch like always in an MCU film. The film was to be originally helmed by Scott Derrickson but creative differences led him to make way for Sam Raimi. It was rumoured that Scott’s version was all the more darker and I really wished to watch that version. But Sam Raimi has done a splendid job here. The fact that he was able to translate his magnum vision onscreen speaks a lot about his skills as a director.
The performances are excellent. Rachel McAdams aa Dr. Christine Palmer is surprisingly good with a much meatier role this time around. Benedict Wong as Wong is at his usual best. Chiwetel Ejiifor as Mordo has his moments to shine. Xochitl Gomez as Chavez was good but I really did not like the way her character was shaped up, giving her very little scope. Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange is first rate but he plays second fiddle in his own film! And this is because the show belongs to Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda who is absolutely smashing and terrific throughout the film. Be it in the dramatic moments or the combat sequences, she is a star through and through.
Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness is High On Concept But Low On Madness although the performances make it consistently watchable. Do keep your expectations in check for this one! Available in a theatre near you.