Categories
Uncategorized

Why Dr Strange is Important for Marvel – Review (Minor Spoilers)

Dr Strange and the Multiverse of Madness is finally here. Going into this film, I had a lot of expectations and ideas about what would happen and how it would feel. I could not have been more wrong. It is undoubtedly the weirdest Marvel movie I have ever seen, and that’s exactly why it is so important. Let me explain:

Sam Raimi

Dr Strange is a Sam Raimi film (director of Evil Dead, Spidermans). It is not an MCU or Kevin Fiege production, it is a Raimi film at its heart. That all comes down to the film’s horror. There is some incredible sequences in this film that are actually scary (a very big challenge for a PG-13 movie). How he uses the sound design is mmmmwah, a chef’s kiss. It will go so quiet in the cinema you can hear people shuffling uncomfortably, building up for that perfect jump scare. He even manages to sneak in demons and ghouls that feel eerily similar to the Evil Dead.

This is the weirdest Sam Raimi film. There are sequences in this film that I cannot believe Kevin Fiege allowed to happen. In my head this is what happened:

Sam:

I want to have them fighting a giant intergalactic octopus to start the film.

Kevin:

No fuckhead, this is the MCU not Evil Dead.

Sam:

Mmmm fine…

10 Months Later…

Sam:

I want reshoots or I will do an Edgar and dip.

Kevin:

Fuck it, do whatever you want

I have so much respect for the MCU and Mr Fiege for letting Sam’s vision come to life. This film completely contrasts all other MCU projects. The concepts and fight sequences in Dr Strange are unlike any movie I have ever seen. Even the colour grading is bright and colourful compared to the grey bullshit of other Marvel Movies. I pray that this what his vision from the beginning and was not fucked over by producers.

Benedict Cumberbatch as Dr. Stephen Strange in Marvel Studios’ DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. ©Marvel Studios 2022. All Rights Reserved.

The Acting

Elizabeth Olsen steals the show. While I admit, she is given the most to work with, every scene she is in Wanda takes over. She may also be Marvel’s best villain. In all of the MCU, Wanda is the first one to finally be scary. The way Elizabeth moves her eyes and changes her voice and breathing shows her anger so clearly. How Sam makes her enter rooms shows Wanda not as a person but almost this possessed demon. Through this, her character reminds me so much of Regan in the exorcist and Carrie – two iconic villains. One slight problem with her performance (that has bugged me for years) is the accent. As with all her other films, it kind of dips in and out. But maybe that’s on purpose because she is switching between personalities.

Benedict Cumberbatch is solid. Whenever he goes evil it shows how good of an actor he truly is. Apart from that, I don’t think the script gives him much to work with. Even in dramatic scenes, his performance feels cut down and rushed. Benedict Wong is amazing as ever. He has so much charisma on screen. Wong is just funny in such a natural way that never feels forced unlike some other actors.

Xochtil Gomez performance is interesting. For the majority of this film, she is simply screaming and running around scared. When she isn’t, she is able to shine in dramatic moments. But there is very little of this. The script does her no favours. For some reason, everyone in the MCU has to be funny. This actress is not funny at all and yet they are trying to make her witty like Spiderman. I do think she is a good actress, just not good for this role.        

The Writing

This brings me onto my next point. The writing of this film is its biggest let down. Firstly, the plot is simple yet feels so unnecessarily convoluted. There are so many new rules and elements introduced that are clearly created just so the writers could get from point A to B. Also, the one liners in this film are fucking horrible. Now here is where I believe Sam Raimi may have had some influence. He clearly loves corny comic book tropes. Thereby, I think he told them to say this on the day and then in the edit snuck them in.  They are just so cringey and forced, even the audience was laughing at them.

Dr Strange 2 is an exposition dump fest. Every line in this film feels like it’s just telling the audience exactly what is happening. The writers do not respect the audience in anyway whatsoever. There is one scene where someone is very clearly being killed and the writers have them say ‘You’re killing me.” So many lines in this film are just unnecessary. Let the audience figure it out themselves and not treat them like idiots.

Two things the writers did well in this film is the pacing and the lack of cameos. This film has a breakneck speed. It is constantly moving and never slows down. While some may hate this, I think it serves the idea of madness and chaotic energy better. Also, the film does not go over the top with cameos. It has a few surprising ones, but they don’t take away from the main characters.

So why is Dr Strange 2 so important? Well, I think this is what Marvel has to become to survive. Less bland shit like Eternals, Shang Chi and Black Widow, and more weirder films where directors have complete control over their vision. And Kevin Fiege knows this. The next few Marvel films look like the director has complete power. Moon Knight and Dr Strange is the direction Marvel needs to move. Audiences will definitely get sick of the same old origin stories and a big laser battle at the end.

Should you see it in cinemas?

Yes absolutely.

Categories
Film Reviews

Uncharted Movie Review

WARNING – THE FOLLOWING IS OPINION AN NOTHING MORE. IF YOU DON’T AGREE THAT IS COMPLETELY ACCEPTABLE.

I honestly was not going to go to the cinema and watch this film. While I was very hyped when I first heard about the pitch, the trailers removed all my hope – another garbage Hollywood project. Therefore, I feel since there is very little love and passion behind this, I am legally obligated to shit on it. Sorry not sorry.

The Characters

One of the biggest problems with the modern blockbuster is the writing of the characters versus the plot. (This is something that boils my blood so stay with my rant for just once second). Basically, in films like this and most Marvel movies the writers prioritise plot over character. In Uncharted it was screaming at me. I have a theory that the writers knew they wanted these big action set pieces and did anything to make it happen. Honestly its just opinion, but to me a movie is far more attractive when the characters drive the story. I know this is hard in an action film but just let it happen a bit more naturally. Let the characters force the plot.

I am not finished yet.

I just didn’t care about any of these knobs on the screen and I can’t imagine anyone else either. Even Nathan Drake. For me this is truly a madness. The writers literally stole the core concepts of this amazing and deep character and still couldn’t get it right. They took his character arc from the fourth game and completely botched it.  An incredible game and story ultimately wasted on this shit.

The Actors

Everyone in this was extremely average. Sorry Tom Holland stans, please don’t hurt me. But realistically when an actor comes out before the release of a movie trashing his performance and the film, you know it’s a not a good sign. Nevertheless, Tom Holland is like Chris Paul – a pure fundamentalist. He is very very good at doing the basics. His surprised / shocked face (clearly the reason he got the role of Peter Parker) is solid. And whenever he has an emotional scene he absolutely smashes it. But ultimately, I just feel he is kind of doing the same thing he always does.

Mark Whalberg’s performance was odd. I’m not sure if it was him or the writing, but every joke he told just did not land at all. He wasn’t funny and truthfully was anything like the Sully we see in the games.

Sophia Taylor as Chloe Frazer was interesting. I wasn’t sure if she was going for an Australian accent. If she was I am not going to shit on it. That’s because I honestly think it is one of the hardest accents to get down. I haven’t really ever seen a non-Australian actor do it right. I think its cause its barely an accent, more just a slur and drawl of mumbled words. So Goodluck future actors.

What it got Right

Don’t get me wrong, I liked a lot of this movie. The adventure and puzzles were all very good. While it wasn’t spot on, the Indian Jones vibe was definitely there. In particular, I love how films like this merge in the history fairly effortlessly. In addition, the action was visually engaging. Apart from some dodgy effects, it was entertaining to watch on screen.

The music

This shit truly rattled me. When there is a perfect, iconic and nostalgic theme waiting to be used WHY NOT FUCKING USE IT. I was honestly waiting for it to be appear the entire film and guess what, it doesn’t. Like the rest of this film it just doesn’t seem to give a shit about the games. Yeah they have the occasional reference to the climbing or the voice actor but its just not the same.

Nothing in this film feels like the Uncharted Games. It just feels like another movie Hollywood slaps a famous name over for a quick cash grab. If you told me this was a National Treasure prequel or Indian Jones prequel, I would fully accept it. Its ultimately just bland and tries to be nothing more then that. Its very frustrating when the games are so incredible and have so amazing stories and characters. Maybe it just doesn’t translate to film, who knows.

Should you go to the movies to see it?

Nah, wait for the streaming release.