Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is the much-awaited movie sequel to Doctor Strange (2016) and the 28th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film was directed by Sam Raimi, written by Michael Waldron, and stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange, alongside Elizabeth Olsen, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Benedict Wong, Xochitl Gomez, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Rachel McAdams. In the film, Strange protects America Chavez (Gomez), a teenager capable of traveling the multiverse, from Wanda Maximoff (Olsen).
My son Asher is a huge Doctor Strange fan and has been eagerly anticipating the release of this second movie after seeing the first one. It did not disappoint and he enjoyed the movie thoroughly, even though the pacing and storyline got a little confusing at some point for me. The latter was because of the spawning MCU characters and storylines across the various movies and Disney+ TV shows. I hear part of the audience chuckle to insider jokes or special appearances here and there which I did not catch. Nonetheless, other than feeling a little left out, you can still enjoy the full movie without having watched the first Doctor Strange movie or any of the other MCU features.
With Sam Raimi at the helm in the director’s seat, he injected more of the weirdness and supernatural elements into the movie, bringing the world of Doctor Strange on the big screen closer to the comic book version. Longtime comic book fans of Doctor Strange will love this. In fact, at some point, the movie felt more like a supernatural thriller than the usual superhero movie we are used to seeing for any MCU features.
Cumberbatch delivered a superb performance as Doctor Strange in the lead role and Olsen brings soul and depth into the troubled character that oscillates between a sympathetic Wanda Maximoff and the obnoxious Scarlet Witch.
There is the introduction of a fresh new face, Xochitl Chavez as America Chavez, a young girl who can open “star portals” that allow her to travel across Marvel’s Multiverse, making her a very powerful character in the MCU. However, her role in this movie is narrowed as a bridging device to bring the other characters and universes together. Maybe she will get her own movie next time, or have her character developed with more depth in other MCU features.
All in all, it was a very fun movie to watch. Go catch it in the cinemas!
For those who are wondering if you should stay for post-credit scenes, there are two – one after the animated ending and one more after the end of the full credits.
This second Doctor Strange movie is particularly jam-packed, hence expect lots of surprise cameos. The most talked-about and obvious one being the appearance of Patrick Stewart as Professor X, signifying that the X-men is finally making their MCU debut in this movie.
Chiwetel Ejiofor also shows up as a variant of Karl Mordo in an alternate universe.
Hayley Atwell shows up in the film as Peggy Carter. Kitted out in a Union Jack costume, she looks like a British version of Captain America. This version of the character is Captain Carter – who was first seen in the animated series What If…?, released in 2021. This is her live-action debut.
Another character who shows up Black Bolt, here played by Anson Mount. Mount previously played this character in Inhumans, which was cancelled after just eight episodes in May 2018.
Lashana Lynch also appears in the film and, in this universe, is Captain Marvel instead of Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers.
Finally, John Krasinski show up as Mr Fantastic himself, Reed Richards, as the sole representative of the Fantastic Four family.