Stephen Strange is a well-respected neurosurgeon, very gifted at his trade and quite well-paid. While speeding along a mountain road, his car is rammed and extensive nerve damage costs him the use of his hands. Since no medical procedure in existence could fix them, he seeks relief from the Ancient One, an powerful mage in Kathmandu. Here, he learns of powers that draw from the fabric of spacetime itself and allow him to warp and twist his landscape as much as he pleases — and he needs to, for a dark god and his heralds seek to overtake the Earth!
The movie itself is quite fun to sit through. We begin with an awesome fight scene that showcases the reality-warping powers beautifully. Next, we have the main hero, Dr. Stephen Strange, funning around while doing surgery; the beginning does a good job establishing his personality, his skills, and his intelligence. The action is not only easy to follow, but the reality-warping effects are done skillfully –they’re not used for everything, and when they are used, it makes the action more exciting to watch instead of confusing you.
The plot itself is a simplistic tale of “beat the evil god,” but that is to its credit since it goes through a lot of trouble to explain the magic. Even better, this explanation is done in an entertaining way, not as a boring infodump; it is even interweaved with a small conflict between Strange and the Ancient One, which I found quite clever. Special mention must go to the way Strange beat the dark god, but all I’ll say about that is that his method is very creative.
Like most Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, its villain doesn’t have a strong personality; he is little more than a mean-mugging thug with magic and a few henchmen. However, the rest of the movie makes up for this through character banter, a well-developed hero, and fun fight scenes — including a fight between two spirits in a hospital operating room.
Ultimately, I recommend you see this movie. It will be an afternoon well spent; as always, Marvel does a good job.