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Author Topic: Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness  (Read 5665 times)
Trippy
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Reply #70 on: May 09, 2022, 02:50:50 PM

It's good!

It's extremely Sam Raimi.
Fuckin hated it.

It's extremely Sam Raimi.
Currently at 75% on Rotten Tomatoes: https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/doctor_strange_in_the_multiverse_of_madness

That puts it near the bottom of MCU movies (above Iron Man 2, just below Age of Ultron): https://editorial.rottentomatoes.com/guide/all-marvel-cinematic-universe-movies-ranked/

Not hurting at the box office, though: https://editorial.rottentomatoes.com/article/weekend-box-office-results-doctor-strange-conjures-up-a-monster-debut/

Quote
Marvel & Sam Raimiís Doctor Strange In The Multiverse of Madness began with $36 million on Thursday, the eighth-highest pre-Friday release total ever. That led to an opening weekend of $185 million, representing the second-highest start during the pandemic behind only Spider-Man: No Way Home. Thatís $100 million higher than the first Doctor Strange film for the best opening of 2022 over The Batmanís $134 million start, the ninth-highest Disney opening ever, and the seventh-best Marvel opening ever. Not too shabby, but also not all that unexpected. Its worldwide total is already at $450 million. Only 4 days in, though, the conversation now shifts to how far will it go.
Khaldun
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Reply #71 on: May 09, 2022, 03:55:53 PM

Reading on social media, it feels like there's one big slice of MCU fans who wanted other cameos/more cameos and who aren't liking the way that the Phase IV films seem disconnected from one another. I think this is the kind of fan who really went nuts for stuff like the Hydra/Shield storyline up to Winter Soldier, then the big Civil War cross-over, and then Infinity War/Endgame. They want a sense of movement towards something, more Easter Eggs that point to the next big crossover, etc. I'd think that kind of viewer would like this movie, but judging from lots of threads, apparently not. I think Eternals may turn to have been a significant momentum-killing mistake in that it not only wasn't a good movie, it didn't seem to have any point, and it's maybe eating into the trust of one segment of the MCU audience.

I did feel that this film had surprisingly little reference to Spider-Man--the trailers implied that Wong was really pissed with Strange about what happened in that film but I don't really recall anything coming up in this film about it. Strange doesn't seem to have learned anything about the multiverse from it, nor did his mistake in NWH have any causal relationship to the events in this film, at least none that's acknowledged. Though as I think on it, the explanation for that has to partly be that Strange's NWH spell affected even him; e.g., he can't remember Peter Parker and thus can't remember that he cast a spell for Peter Parker and thus can't remember the multiversal chaos that caused, and neither can Wong. Which prevents them even from doing any exposition about it. I guess. But it still feels odd--two films so directly proximate to each other and so similar thematically (if not in terms of directorial approach) involving some of the same characters in which the second film doesn't reference the first directly at all.
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Reply #72 on: May 09, 2022, 03:59:35 PM


RT's Audience Score has it at 87%, which is well above average for an MCU movie.  It's fascinating reading the negative reviews -- some of them complain that it was too much of an MCU movie, some of them complain that it wasn't enough of an MCU movie, some of them complain that the prominent LGBT character is wokeness gone amok, some complain the LGBT character wasn't centered and that's very problematic...

"I have not actually recommended many games, and I'll go on the record here saying my track record is probably best in the industry." - schild
Velorath
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Reply #73 on: May 09, 2022, 06:43:06 PM

Yeah, I've seen more than one complaint that was along the lines of "even though I watched WandaVision, I think it's bad that this movie assumes people have watched WandaVision".
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Reply #74 on: May 10, 2022, 02:27:22 PM

I'm giving this movie a solid C+. This is probably the goofiest of the marvel movies and I mostly blame it on Sam Raimi's taste for camp but I found myself wanting to laugh at the last 30 minutes of this movie which isn't a bad thing per say but after seeing so much death and destruction I can't help but feel "meh". Like at this point I'm beyond expecting the average MCU movie to be a B- at worse, there's clearly a A,B,C teams when it comes to these films and the drop in quality between say widow and strange 2 versus shang-chi and eternals is jarring.
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Reply #75 on: May 10, 2022, 04:10:44 PM

widow and strange 2 felt like the same tier of trash

shang-chi was great

eternals was a dc movie with the wrong branding
Khaldun
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Reply #76 on: May 10, 2022, 05:04:43 PM

It is kind of a problem with the entire idea of "incursions" that they are so abstract. Every single one of them is worse than what Thanos did (well, on round #2, it's what he was proposing doing, more or less) but when everybody in a universe dies, it means nobody who cared about them is left around to mourn. It's so total that nobody is sad. Maybe it was a shit universe in the first place, or it was a universe where Elon Musk was Iron Man, and then you're almost grateful. It should be awful--not trillions but so many more sapient beings died. (Say your average planet of sapients is 10 billion in an MCU universe; there's 100 billion planets in the Milky Way and even if only 1 percent of them have sapient life that's a billion planets of 10 billion sapients, and then there's 100 billion galaxies in the universe--that's a LOT of sapients dying when a universe dies). But there's not much you can do with that so it's just ash and swirly shit in the sky.

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Reply #77 on: May 10, 2022, 06:06:53 PM

.


The music battle might have been the single worst thing in the MCU but Raimi haters were done by the not-beholder battle.

Bruce Campbell nailed the coffin shut long before the music battle.
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Reply #78 on: May 10, 2022, 06:32:43 PM

Shang-chi just needed one catchy music number to be a Disney princess movie. It was bad. I never got the "Eternals" isn't a marvel movie mantra. Its definitely a marvel movie, one that has more in common Iron Man 2 or Thor 2 than any of the good ones.

Also try not to think too hard about Doc Strange 2, the movie will not reward you for your efforts.
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Reply #79 on: May 10, 2022, 07:03:18 PM

Not a Raimi hater or lover but they should have taken the L on the eyeball monster and let Suicide Squad have it, at least they earned the campy goofyness of it. Shang chi was great fuckers.

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Khaldun
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Reply #80 on: May 10, 2022, 09:49:11 PM

I hate to say it but the eyeball monster is a direct visual quote straight out of the comics. Though in the comics, he's not a goon demon working for someone else, he's a god-level demon in its own right. He's also kind of a Lovecraft-derivation/Robert E.Howard derivation--very pulp.

https://marvel.fandom.com/wiki/Shuma-Gorath_(Multiverse)

« Last Edit: May 10, 2022, 09:55:06 PM by Khaldun »
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Reply #81 on: May 11, 2022, 12:09:41 AM

That's doesn't make it better in a world where Raimi has final say on the visuals.
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Reply #82 on: May 11, 2022, 06:24:25 AM

Yes, obviously it was a thing from the comics but there are a million other dumb things from the comics they could have used instead.

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Khaldun
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Reply #83 on: May 11, 2022, 11:45:15 AM

I'm not sure you guys would have liked the other dumb things any better.
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Reply #84 on: May 11, 2022, 11:59:17 AM

not with raimi in charge, no, he would've figured out how to get the eye out of anything
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Reply #85 on: May 11, 2022, 11:59:43 AM

I'm not sure you guys would have liked the other dumb things any better.


Not unless it was the precise dumb thing that proved the pet MCU nerd theory they developed over the course of months based on three pixels from the teaser trailer, anyway.   why so serious?

"I have not actually recommended many games, and I'll go on the record here saying my track record is probably best in the industry." - schild
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Reply #86 on: May 11, 2022, 12:06:07 PM

Only reason I thought it was dumb was because it looked just like the Suicide Squad bad guy.

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Khaldun
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Reply #87 on: May 11, 2022, 07:26:50 PM

The giant starfish? Not from where I sit but ok.

Probably you could do a more genuinely horrific monster but that's part of the point of the movie--the demons and monsters are kind of secondary, the bad shit is really inside of people.
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Reply #88 on: May 11, 2022, 07:36:21 PM

The giant starfish? Not from where I sit but ok.

Probably you could do a more genuinely horrific monster but that's part of the point of the movie--the demons and monsters are kind of secondary, the bad shit is really inside of people.


The movie is literally about external forces changing the nature of man. Specifically, the darkhold. It's not about the call coming from inside the house. Yes desperation is pliable, but something must push for it to pull.

Also it's a raimi movie, the demons and bullshit are Never secondary for him. The dude is the opposite of layered.
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Reply #89 on: May 11, 2022, 08:10:11 PM

All the magic book stuff was just an excuse to not go to therapy.

I've been trying to think of an MCU movie where the main character has as much personal growth as Strange did in this one.  The examples I can think of where the hero has an "arc" it's really just them getting a cool superpower/gadget at the end that they can use to punch/zap the bad guy, rather than any change in their own personality.  This one was about Strange deciding to be the version of himself that could trust someone else with the knife.

"I have not actually recommended many games, and I'll go on the record here saying my track record is probably best in the industry." - schild
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Reply #90 on: May 11, 2022, 11:55:09 PM

Quote
I've been trying to think of an MCU movie where the main character has as much personal growth as Strange did in this one.

Iron Man 1
Iron Man 2
Iron Man 3
Winter Soldier
Black Panther (though it wasn't the main character)
Guardians 1 and 2 (literally every GOTG is about personal growth for the entire crew and a bunch of secondary characters)

you know what, you're struggling because it's almost all of them
eldaec
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Reply #91 on: May 12, 2022, 02:50:03 AM

Also Thor and Spiderman stand out.

The iron man films, rewatching them one of my issues was that he had the same growth in all of them, then just reset for the next movie.

The actual iron man sequels were the Avengers films.

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Reply #92 on: May 12, 2022, 08:34:43 AM

All the magic book stuff was just an excuse to not go to therapy.

I've been trying to think of an MCU movie where the main character has as much personal growth as Strange did in this one.  The examples I can think of where the hero has an "arc" it's really just them getting a cool superpower/gadget at the end that they can use to punch/zap the bad guy, rather than any change in their own personality.  This one was about Strange deciding to be the version of himself that could trust someone else with the knife.

Doc Strange 2 is like the worst examples of a character arc in the entire MCU, the last two MCU movies and probably Captain Marvel beating it out.

The problem with the central emotional crux of the movie is deconstructing a character trait that hasn't shown up since the very beginning Doc Strange 1.... In fact Steven Strange learned the lesson that this movie trying to teach him in act II of that movie.. Which means that Doc 2 is playing with a version of the character that hasn't existed beyond the opening act of a movie made 6 years ago. We have literally watched him let other people hold the knife for half a decade...

God this movie gets worse the more I think about it.
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Reply #93 on: May 12, 2022, 09:48:07 AM

The iron man films, rewatching them one of my issues was that he had the same growth in all of them, then just reset for the next movie.

I can't think of how he grows in any of them.  He goes through a story arc of overcoming adversity, but that's not the same thing as character growth.  He just keeps doing the same thing he always does (building and/or fixing his iron man suits) until it eventually works.

(edit) Thor: Ragnarok was one of the ones I thought might be an example, but on reflection, the big conclusion of his arc in that movie was "you don't need the magic feather, the power is within you".  Which is the same as Starlord in GotG 2, and Captain Marvel, and I don't know how many others.  That's the thing I was referring to when I talked about the "Now I Have the Power to Punch the Bad Guy" ending.  It's become a pattern.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2022, 09:53:29 AM by Samwise »

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Typhon
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Reply #94 on: May 12, 2022, 10:48:19 AM

(I haven't seen Doc Strange yet)

Thor, Loki and Wanda are probably the only characters I think have any sort of arc.  I guess Ant Man.  Hulk?  Yeah, I guess Hulk also.  I hope we're not done with Hulk.

Thor: smug, naÔve, violence solves everything --> a bunch of stuff --> realizing that he barely has ANYTHING figured out and should probably get to work on that
Loki: I mean, c'mon, do I need to type anything here?  Narcissitic sociopath --> hero who sacrifices himself to try to save his people/brother
Wanda:  Probably the most interesting arc, but maybe I say that because I haven't seen Doc Strange 2 yet (and her arc isn't done).

Peter is just growing up, I don't really see that as an arc (yet).

Civil War as an example of growth seems odd.  The entire tension there is Steve sticking to his Captain America ideals in spite of the world (as far as he knows) becoming a much more morally gray place to be.  It's interesting to watch Steve because it's the world that changes, not Steve.

Iron Man fails to change regardless of apparently learning his lesson in every movie.  Even when he develops PTSD.  He always seems the same to me; I'm smart, I'm right, I'm going to try to use how clever I am to phone it in, but in the end I'll do the right thing because, underneath my smug smartness, I'll sacrifice myself to do the right thing. All along the way I'll be borderline villain because so often the amazing things I create either directly or indirectly endanger people.
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Reply #95 on: May 12, 2022, 10:57:05 AM

I think Thor has growth between Ragnarok, Infinity War and Endgame, it's just that it's negative--it's Now I Have Power to Punch the Bad Guy, then Now I Have Power to Kill the Bad Guy, I Fucked Up and Missed, I'm Just Going to Go to Waste Here, Oh Ok I Guess I'll Help Whatever I'm Useless.

Winter Soldier I think Captain America has real growth, in that he decides that doing his thing requires making his own judgments about right and wrong and not working for anyone. Which leads straight into Civil War where he finds out that's a bit messier.

Stark has an arc, it's just really spread out over the entire MCU up to Endgame, it's not really contained in any single movie. He's a different person by the time he gets back to Earth in Engame.

GOTG has some arcs and they're substantial. They're not always consistent or thought fully through--Drax in 1 and 2 doesn't really add up, for example.

But I do think Dr. Strange 2 actually has a really nice character arc worked out through the two themes: are you happy? and you're the one who has to hold the knife. I'm not sure they can stick to it--that was the same problem with the Iron Man films where Stark learns the same thing three times and resets. Strange has already had to learn humility once and though this particular lesson is a bit different, the temptation is going to be to reset him to arrogance the next time he's meeting up with other superheroes, it's sort of his niche.
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Reply #96 on: May 12, 2022, 10:59:07 AM

the temptation is going to be to reset him to arrogance the next time he's meeting up with other superheroes, it's sort of his niche.

I expect this as well, and will be really pleasantly surprised if they don't do that.

"I have not actually recommended many games, and I'll go on the record here saying my track record is probably best in the industry." - schild
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Reply #97 on: May 12, 2022, 11:06:11 AM

Right. Sure, he can let someone else hold the knife IF they're one of the few someones he recognizes as a peer in his area of specialization--so Wong, yeah. Maybe Clea now. Heck, maybe Blade too whenever that arrives.

But deferring to New Captain America or Captain Marvel? Doubt it.
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Reply #98 on: May 12, 2022, 11:12:37 AM

I'd personally love it if he just took a left turn into Dude/Buddha-esque detachment and started transitioning into more of the wise mentor character (with some stumbles along the way) rather than being the one who has to be in control of everything.  After another movie it'll be time to start thinking about retiring the character anyway, and that'd be a more fun way to do it than having him die heroically or disappear into an alternate timeline.

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Reply #99 on: May 12, 2022, 11:31:40 AM

i expect them to keep raimi and for 3 to be a piece of shit
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Reply #100 on: May 12, 2022, 01:16:26 PM

Are we forgetting that Doc Strange left the fate the universe to Iron Man? I don't know what moment Strange didn't trust someone else to make the right call, even when he disagreed with Peter he ultimately left the fate of the multiverse in the hands of a moody teenager...
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Reply #101 on: May 12, 2022, 01:38:49 PM

Are we forgetting that Doc Strange left the fate the universe to Iron Man? I don't know what moment Strange didn't trust someone else to make the right call, even when he disagreed with Peter he ultimately left the fate of the multiverse in the hands of a moody teenager...

I thought about that too, but in that situation, Thanos was the knife.  Strange gave up the time stone because he was confident that everyone else's actions after he was out of the picture would follow along the exact trajectories that he'd foreseen.  (And to be fair, he was right, but that's not what we're talking about here.)  He wasn't really putting his faith in the other Avengers, he was putting it in his own omniscience.  That's why they brought it up at the start of this most recent movie; it was just another example of Strange being sure that he could control every outcome.

The contrast between that and what he did in this movie was that he didn't have that type of control.  He'd had a few chances to absorb the lesson that the "if I just take this little bit more power I will be able to fix everything no matter the cost" approach is a trap and so instead when he was faced with the same choice that another version of him had been presented with, he took a leap of faith, which, as very firmly established in his first movie, is absolutely Not His Thing.

"I have not actually recommended many games, and I'll go on the record here saying my track record is probably best in the industry." - schild
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Reply #102 on: May 12, 2022, 02:22:10 PM

Are we forgetting that Doc Strange left the fate the universe to Iron Man? I don't know what moment Strange didn't trust someone else to make the right call, even when he disagreed with Peter he ultimately left the fate of the multiverse in the hands of a moody teenager...

I thought about that too, but in that situation, Thanos was the knife.  Strange gave up the time stone because he was confident that everyone else's actions after he was out of the picture would follow along the exact trajectories that he'd foreseen.  (And to be fair, he was right, but that's not what we're talking about here.)  He wasn't really putting his faith in the other Avengers, he was putting it in his own omniscience.  That's why they brought it up at the start of this most recent movie; it was just another example of Strange being sure that he could control every outcome.

The contrast between that and what he did in this movie was that he didn't have that type of control.  He'd had a few chances to absorb the lesson that the "if I just take this little bit more power I will be able to fix everything no matter the cost" approach is a trap and so instead when he was faced with the same choice that another version of him had been presented with, he took a leap of faith, which, as very firmly established in his first movie, is absolutely Not His Thing.

That doesn't sound like the control freak this movie is implying that he is. Especially since most of those timelines had the avengers losing. Now we can say "Well steven strange is so arrogant he simply assumed that everything will go according to plan even without him being there!" but I didn't get that from the movie. That requires me to splice in his comic book personality and juxtapose it over the cool uncle figure we've gotten over the last 6 years of movies.
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Reply #103 on: May 12, 2022, 04:23:24 PM

I also don't see "literally seeing the future" as "thinking he could control every outcome". That's not being a control freak, it was just following a predetermined set of actions that would lead to the only victory possible.

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Reply #104 on: May 12, 2022, 04:55:48 PM

His comic book persona is actually pretty varied. In his own comic, he's been served up the lesson of humility about six or seven times over the years in various ways--that he's too unapproachable and too controlled, that he takes too much responsibility, that he's arrogant or doesn't consult with anyone else leading to bad outcomes. But he's also been upbraided occasionally for chickening out when it's time for him to take charge because he's too attached to the idea of being someone's apprentice--he defers to the Ancient One, he defers to Kaluu, he defers most notably to Doom when it's Doom, Strange and the Molecule Man up against goobers who are going to destroy the entire Multiverse and then agrees to stooge for God Doom for a long time.

Depending on who is writing him, he's either Mr. Sexy Times who puts the movies on all the ladies or he's Mr. Way Too Reserved and Controlled who can't really love anyone.

He's either a control freak reacting to his bad childhood (including one version where Mordo travelled through time with monsters to torment him at night) or he's just a natural talent who got used to the adulation of others and let it go to his head.

I think the one consistent thing is that he's a hell of a fast learner whose upward boundary of potential in any system that combines deep knowledge and practical skill is effectively unlimited.

Maybe also that he's not a good friend and not a very good teacher, though the absolutely 100% best Strange story ever since his early days ("The Oath") makes him out to be very loyal to Wong, though that's the old Oriental manservant Wong. (That story also introduced him to his absolutely best romantic partner which later writers dropped, more's the pity, which is Night Nurse; the version who ran an urgent-care clinic for superheroes on the QT.)

It took Marvel many decades to notice a resemblance between Stark and Strange, which is interesting--they didn't really see it fully until RDJ cemented his take on Stark after the first Iron Man movie. It also took them a surprisingly long time to recognize that Strange and Doom had some interesting connections and alignments.
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