Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022)

doctor strange in the multiverse of madness poster 2022 movie
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

Like some of the horror aspects and some of the visuals

The story dragged a bit and while some of visuals were good, others were average

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

Studio:  Marvel Studios

Genre(s):  Comic Book/Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s):  May 2, 2022 (Premiere)/May 6, 2022 (US)

MPAA Rating:  PG-13

doctor strange in the multiverse of madness vs gargantos shuma gorath

Put the bus down, please

Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) is questioning his life due to the marriage of his former love Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams).  When a young woman named America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez) reveals she can jump between the multiverses, Strange finds he must discover the Book of Vishanti to stop the evil spreading between the worlds.  Strange realizes the danger is a former ally in the Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and stopping Wanda Maximoff could mean sacrificing himself and his very soul.

Directed by Sam Raimi, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is a Marvel superhero action-adventure movie.  The film follows Spider-Man:  No Way Home in 2021 and is a sequel to 2016’s Doctor Strange.  The film is the twenty-eight entry in MCU film series and part of the Phase Four films.  It received a strong box off return and positive reviews.

doctor strange and the multiverse of madness scarlet witch wanda maximoff elizabeth olsen

Guess who’s crazy…again

I love Marvel but I have to admit that I have a little MCU fatigue.  In addition to all of the films, there is now a glut of TV material.  I can keep up with the movies, but it is a struggle to always keep up with the shows.  While Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness pulls heavily from WandaVision, shows like Loki get left behind…leaving it hard to “prep” for the movie.  Due to aspects of the plot, a *****spoiler alert***** exists for rest of the review.

Spider-Man:  No Way Home ripped open the Multiverse, but it largely feels like it isn’t as big of factor as other events leading up to Dr. Strange and the Multiverse of Madness.  The movie has Strange and America bouncing from universe to universe, but the movie is a showdown between Strange and Wanda.  When dealing with magic, it often feels a bit arbitrary…“magic” often just ends up being a means to solve a problem without having to solve it (I also don’t like how Doctor Strange has essentially become a Green Lantern with magic doing anything he can imagine).

doctor strange in the multiverse of madness illuminati black bolt captain carter mr fantastic captain marvel

Introducing the Illuminati…for a minute

A lot of attention was given to Raimi directing (following his run on the original Spider-Man films) and the movie being a Marvel horror movie.  The movie does have some horror movie aspects, but it doesn’t feel as horrific as it could.  There are some great moments, but I wish they had pushed it a bit farther.  Scenes like the Illuminati were great (and effectively shocking).  It doesn’t entirely feel like a Raimi movie, but it also doesn’t feel like a Marvel movie at points.

Cumberbatch has his character nailed down and this just continues it.  The movie isn’t kind to the character of Wanda Maximoff but it is good for Elizabeth Olsen.  She goes in full for the “evil” Scarlet Witch, and it works out well for her (but it also feels like that negates some of her growth in WandaVision).  Xochitl Gomez is charming as America, but I wish she had more non-action scenes where since the ones she did have gave her more depth.  Chiwetel Ejiofor and Benedict Wong are underused, and Rachel McAdams is used effectively to tie up her line.  The highlight of the movie are of course the Illuminati which taps into other Marvel ventures.  John Krasinski is a good Reed Richards, Lashana Lynch jumps from Captain Marvel’s ally to Captain Marvel, Hayley Atwell takes on the What If? Captain Carter version, failed Inhumans series star Anson Mount returns as Black Bolt, and the big return of Patrick Stewart as Professor X.  Raimi regular Bruce Campbell makes an appearance, but the post-credit introduces important Dr. Strange character Clea played by Charlize Theron.

doctor strange in the multiverse of madness zombie benedict cumberbatch

Fear the Walking Dead

The special effects range from great to so-so.  The big picture effects (like the worlds created by Raimi) and the visionary look of Doctor Strange is good.  In portions of the movie it gets the trippy-hippie feel of early issues of Dr. Strange.  It is the smaller effects that just don’t hold up as well.  It doesn’t look cheap, but it doesn’t have that real world feel that sometimes is what is needed to give a MCU movie that extra boost to take it over the top.

I wanted to love Sam Raimi’s return to Marvel properties, but I just liked Sam Raimi’s return.  It doesn’t feel quite distinctive enough to really win me over nor does it feel like a great MCU movie to really elevate it to the top of a continuously growing pile of MCU films.  There are definitely worse films than Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, but there are also better films.  Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is followed by Thor:  Love and Thunder in 2022.

Related Links:

Doctor Strange (2016)

Spider-Man:  No Way Home (2021)

WandaVision—Review and Complete Episode Guide

What If?—Season 1 Review and Complete Episode Guide

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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